10 Things You Need To Know About The MET Gala

The MET Gala. It is a red-carpet phenomenon with all your favorite 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 exactly 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 endeavor 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 all are invited 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. All the invitees are picked out by Ms. Wintour, and they have to buy the tickets to come to the Gala. But 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. The event as well as the exhibition is generally sponsored and thus 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 favorite designer/inspiration in a unique way.

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 2016, posting pictures from inside the MET Gala has banned.

What is the theme for 2019?

The 2019 Met Gala will be a celebration of gregariously over-the-top fashion thanks to its theme, “Camp: Notes on Fashion.” According to Andrew Bolton, Wendy Yu Curator in Charge of the Costume Institute, in an interview with Vogue, the 2019 Met Gala theme was inspired by Susan Sontag’s legendary 1964 essay, “Notes on Camp,” in which she describes camp as the “love of the unnatural: of artifice and exaggeration…style at the expense of content.” Bolton found the essay to be especially relevant as it related to the current political and cultural climate.

You can read more about it here.

I hope you guys got to know something more about the MET Gala from this blog post.