After a yearlong delay due to COVID-19, this year’s Met Gala kicked off Monday with a bevy of surprise superstars and a theme celebrating American fashion.
Typically taking place on the first Monday in May, the 73rd annual exhibition was split into two parts for 2021 after its cancellation in 2020 due to the pandemic. Its theme, “In America: A Lexicon of Fashion,” is Part 1 of a larger, two-part “In America” show.
Unlike past shows, this first part will last a full year, coinciding for several months with Part 2, “An Anthology of Fashion,” which will open in early May — when, everyone desperately hopes, a full-sized Met Gala can be held.
In lieu of that full-sized event, Monday night’s festivities kicked off with a marching band and a gymnast — and early carpet walkers in sultry, sparkly looks.
This year, the gala is co-hosted by Timothée Chalamet, Billie Eilish, Amanda Gorman and Naomi Osaka. Honorary chairs are Tom Ford and sponsor Instagram’s Adam Mosseri, alongside Vogue’s Anna Wintour, who has served as chair for every Met Gala since 1995.
Keke Palmer was one of the first stars to arrive, wearing a stunning, earth-tone body gown with a train by Sergio Hudson. The designer’s star rose earlier this year when he dressed both U.S. Vice-President Kamala Harris and former first lady Michelle Obama.
Meanwhile, Dune star Timothée Chalamet turned heads with his all-white ensemble, finished by a pair of Converse high-tops.
Chalamet has become somewhat of a force in the fashion world, lauded by numerous outlets as one of the best dressed men in Hollywood. When announcing his Met Gala hosting-duties, Vogue noted his “unexpected mix of streetwear, lack of a stylist and embrace of avant-garde labels,” as setting his style choices apart.
Singer Billie Eilish, meanwhile, stunned with a flowing gown replete with a flowing train, requiring helpers to carry and smooth it out as she entered the event.
In choosing the Oscar de la Renta-crafted dress, Eilish said she felt like “it was time” to explore a different version of femininity, diverging from her typically streetwear-inspired past outfits.
Rap star Lil Nas X glittered in gold, showing off in a one piece suit that was only revealed under a full body cape and golden suit of armour.
Co-chair Amanda Gorman, meanwhile, was breathtaking in custom Vera Wang, with a diamond laureate in her hair.