April is finally coming to an end. And every fashion lover knows that it is officially time to get ready for the most fashionable party of the year – The MET Gala. It is a red carpet phenomenon with all your favourite celebrities dressed to impress just as so it has been dubbed as the fashion Oscars. But there is a lot more than what meets the eye at the MET Gala. So I decided to share with you everything there is to know about the gala and what I personally think of it.
What is the MET Gala?
Every first Monday of May, The Metropolitan Museum of Art hosts the MET Gala or previously known as the Costume Institute Gala. It is an annual black-tie, fundraising extravaganza for the museum’s Costume Institute (i.e. the fashion department). The Costume Institute is one of the only departments of the Metropolitan Museum of Art that needs to fund itself. It also marks the grand opening of the Costume Institute’s annual fashion exhibit. The MET Gala is also the most exclusive social event in New York (It is invitation only) and one of the biggest fundraising nights in the city.
When did it all start?
Publicist Eleanor Lambert started the gala in 1948 as a philanthropic endeavour for the good & great of the New York Society. It has changed over the years, but it was only after Anna Wintour, the editor-in-chief of Vogue America, took over as the chairwoman of the gals in 1999 did it become an international phenomenon.
Who goes to the Gala?
Unlike other social events in New York, the MET Gala is an invitation only event which sees a power cocktail of invitees from fashion, film, politics & business. The invitees are picked out by Ms. Wintour. And money is not the first priority when choosing the invitees. It is more inclined towards the popularity & achievements of the person. Some celebrities invited by brands to come & sit at the brand table. Ms. Wintour also invites up & coming designers who can’t afford the tickets to join the Gala. Both, the event and the exhibition are generally sponsored and all the money raised from the ticket sales goes to the Costume Institute.
Why is there a theme to the MET Gala?
The themed MET Gala actually started in 1971. The theme sets the tone for the annual fashion exhibit at the Costume Institute. They range anywhere from historical periods to genres to individual design innovators to brand tributes.
Do all the attendees have to dress up according to the theme?
No. It is not compulsory to dress according to the theme of the Gala that year. But isn’t dressing up according to a theme more fun. The theme dressing gives the celebrity as well as the designer to showcase their interpretation of the theme or pay homage to their favourite designer/inspiration in a unique way. The 2 looks I love the most would surely be Sarah Jessica Parker in a satin gown with Oscar De La Renta embroidered in red on the train for the Charles James exhibition in 2014 and Claire Danes glow in the dark gown by Zac Posen for Manus X Machina exhibition in 2016.
What happens inside the Gala after the red carpet?
The MET Gala consists of a Cocktail hour & formal dinner. During the cocktail hour, the attendees walk down the red carpet & tour the themed exhibition for the year. This is followed by the formal dinner which includes performances from some of the leading entertainers. Since last year, posting pictures from inside the MET Gala has banned.
What is the theme for 2017?
The theme for this year is “Rei Kawakubo/Comme des Garçons: Art of the In-Between”. The exhibition will showcase 120 of her creations dating back to the brands’ debut collection in 1981. I am personally a huge fan of the avant-grade style of Rei Kawakubo . I can’t wait to see the red carpet this year. The exhibition will be open to public from May 4, 2017.
I hope you guys got to know something more about the MET Gala from this blog post.