Arguably the biggest night in fashion, The Met Gala is one of the most eagerly anticipated events in the calendar year (at least in my book). The fundraising gala, run for the benefit of the Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Costume Institute in New York City, traditionally falls on the first Monday in May but the impact of COVID-19 means that not only have we not had an official Met Ball since 2019; the 2021 gala was delayed until September.
Formally known as the Costume Institute Gala or the Costume Institute Benefit, the Met Gala boasts the most exclusive guest list in fashion – with Anna Wintour having stood at the helm of it all since 1995.
Tickets to the Met Gala reportedly go for US$35,000 apiece, with tables ranging from US$200,000 to US$300,000. The grand event signals the opening of the Met Costume Institute’s annual fashion exhibit – which each year reflects a new theme. In 2019, you may recall the theme was “Camp: Notes on Fashion” and in 2018 we explored “Heavenly Bodies: Fashion and the Catholic Imagination”.
This year looks a little different than your average Met Ball, but we’ve no doubt it’ll be a spectacle nonetheless. So here’s your guide to everything you need to know about the Met Gala for 2021.
When is the 2021 Met Gala?
As we mentioned, the event has been shifted from its traditional position on the first Monday of May. Instead, the 2021 Met Gala will be held on Monday, September 13 (or Tuesday, September 14 for Aussies) at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York.
The excitement is set to kick off from 5:30 pm EST, which converts to 7:30 am AEST.
What’s the theme for this year’s event?
The theme for the 2021 Met Gala is “In America: A Lexicon of Fashion”. As The Guardian reports, this theme is very much rooted in the message of inclusivity and has been inspired by the Black Lives Matter movement.
The outlet shared that guests of the event will be met by a banner from a 2019 Prabal Gurung fashion show that reads “Who Gets To Be American?”.
Curator Andrew Bolton explained that:
“The approach of this exhibition very much came out of the Black Lives Matter movement.
“American fashion is undergoing a renaissance that is being driven by engagement with political and social issues. Young fashion designers in America, as in Britain, are at the forefront of conversations about inclusivity around race and gender and the body. When you talk to them about their ambitions, it’s not about jobs at the big European houses or being the next Ralph Lauren or Diane Von Furstenberg. They approach fashion in an ethical way which is rooted in values and community.”
The Met Costume Institute’s fashion exhibit will open in two parts following the Gala. “In America: A Lexicon of Fashion” will open on September 18, 2021, in the Anna Wintour Costume Centre and part two, “In America: An Anthology of Fashion”, will open on May 5, 2022.
Here’s hoping travel is a thing by then and Aussies will be able to check out the incredible display.
Who is on the guestlist for the 2021 Met Gala?
While this part of the event is always a little hush hush, there are some names that tend to appear on the Met Gala guest list each year – with 2021 assumedly being no exception.
It’s broadly believed Rihanna, Jennifer Lopez, Kim Kardashian and Beyonce will be in attendance. Marie Claire reports that TikTok creators Emma Chamberlain and Addison Rae have also made the cut this year.
With Covid very much remaining a concern for many, however, the New York Times shares that certain international stars have turned down invitations – while others have decided not to attend due to the optics of throwing a giant party during a global pandemic.
What we do know is the name of the hosts of the 2021 Met Gala. Those would be: musician Billie Eilish, actor Timothée Chalamet, tennis star Naomi Osaka and poet and activist, Amanda Gorman.
What Covid restrictions are in place?
The NYT has reported that there is a long list of requirements in place for those attending the 2021 Met Gala when it comes to Covid-safe practices. Proof of vaccination, a negative Covid-19 test, and masks (save for dining) will all be required.
…Not that we’ll know much about what the inside of the event looks like anyway. The Met Gala famously has a no phones and no social media policy once guests are off the runway and inside the museum.
Where can I watch the 2021 Met Gala red carpet?
You can check out Vogue’s live stream of the 2021 Met Gala red carpet on Twitter here from 7:30 am AEST on September 13, 2021.
In addition to that, expect your social media feeds (Instagram, mostly) to be swamped with content from the second you open your eyes.