Janelle Monáe arrived at the Oscars on Sunday night wearing a custom Ralph Lauren gown adorned with 168,000 crystals.
The open-backed, long-sleeved silk lamé tulle gown came took Ralph Lauren’s seamstresses over 600 hours to hand-embroider and featured a full A-line skirt and an open back.
Monáe accessorised with a tear drop diamond choker and went for bold, fresh makeup with a strong brow, full lashes and glittery black liner and a bright orangey-red lip.
The Dirty Computer singer later changed out of the gown to kick off the Academy Awards with a song-and-dance production number based on her 2010 song “Come Alive,” lyrically rewritten to reference the Oscars and some of the year’s top films — with spoken asides about the lack of female directors represented among the nominees, and what she personally represented as the show opener.
“We celebrate all the women who directed phenomenal films,” she said, midsong, “and I’m so proud to stand here as a black queer artist, telling stories. Happy Black History Month.”