- Written by Bernd Debussmann Jr
- BBC News, Washington
The fashion world gathered in New York City once again for the annual Met Gala — this year headlined by the late fashion icon Karl Lagerfeld.
The event, known for its star-studded guest list and extravagant costumes, included pearls, starched collars, and black-and-white tributes to the designer.
The Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Costume Institute fundraiser only hosted 400 guests.
Lagerfeld’s cat was also honored. At least two celebrities have dressed as Choupette.
For this year’s theme – “Karl Lagerfeld: The Beauty Line” – attendees were asked to wear clothes “in honor of Karl”.
For decades, Lagerfeld has headed up some of the biggest fashion houses in the world, including Chanel and Fendi.
The designer, who died in 2019 at the age of 85, often wore dark sunglasses and had his white hair pulled back into a ponytail. He was often photographed alongside Choupette, his famous pet.
Retired tennis superstar Roger Federer, Grammy-winning singer Dua Lipa, actress Penelope Cruz and writer, actress and producer Michaela Cowell have been invited to be this year’s co-chairs, along with Vogue editor-in-chief Anna Wintour.
Brittney Griner, the WNBA basketball star who was jailed in Russia, attended Monday night alongside her wife.
Two stars – Karlie Kloss and Serena Williams – used the night as an opportunity to announce their pregnancy.
Last year, the Great Hall at the Metropolitan Museum was decorated with 275,000 pink roses. But the adornments are nothing compared to the outfits that celebrities flaunt on their way to the event.
Much of the public’s eye is focused on the red carpet and extravagant outfits for those present – which last year included Kim Kardashian donning a $4.8m (£3.84m) rhinestone-encrusted dress worn by Marilyn Monroe.
This year, Kardashian wore a pearl-dripping Schiaparelli design, which was created after a visit last week to Karl Lagerfeld’s Paris office, where she said she was getting “a little inspiration for the Met.”
“I just wanted to feel glamorous,” she told Vogue on the red carpet. “I wanted pearls – what’s more, Carl.”
Her sisters Kylie and Kendall also attended.
Single tickets to the event this year are priced at $50,000, with tables starting at $300,000.
Actresses Priyanka Chopra, Elle Fanning, Brooklyn and Nicola Peltz Beckham, singer Rita Ora and her husband, Taika Waititi, also attended.
Rapper Lil’ Nas X arrived looking like some kind of mythical creature, clad in pearls and plated silver.
The beleaguered actor Jonathan Majors was scheduled to appear as Valentino’s guest, but “mutually agreed” with the fashion house not to attend in the wake of assault charges stemming from the March incident.
Choupette was another notable guest not attending this year — although pop star Doja Cat and actor Jared Leto dressed up as cats.
A post on the cat’s official page on Instagram read: “Many people invited me to walk the red carpet at the Met Gala 2023 in honor of my father, but we preferred to stay warm and at home.” “We pay tribute to my father every day since he passed away and we are very moved to see one more day dedicated to him.”