Tuesday, May 4, 2010

High Fashion: The Costume Institute Gala

Every May one of the highlights of the NYC social season is the Costume Institute Gala held at The Metropolitan Museum of Art. Vogue editor Anna Wintour is the leader of this event, but shares the spotlight with new co-hosts each year. This year these roles were filled by Oprah Winfrey and Patrick Robinson, executive vice president for design at Gap. The picture above is Winfrey with designer Oscar de la Renta, who designed her gown. The gala is held at the museum in conjunction with the opening of the Costume Institute's annual spring/summer exhibition. This year the exhibition is American Woman: Fashioning a National Identity, focusing on the recently acquired collection of women's fashions from 1890-1940 recently donated by the Brooklyn Museum (that institution is also hosting a related exhibition of other parts of the same collection, American High Style: Fashioning a National Collection).

The decor for the gala ball is always spectacular. When I left work yesterday, the boxes of flowers and the giant hot air balloon filling the Great Hall were suggestive of the more streamlined and sporty rising-middle-class American mode of living that perhaps challenged the traditional mode of aristocratic European fashion. Tickets for this event ranged in price but went up to $250,000. For this price, the 700+ guests in attendance had cocktails in the Petrie Court and dinner in the Temple of Dendur, plus live entertainment by Lady GaGa.
Of course photographers go crazy shooting all the celebrities on the red carpet up the Met's main staircase, catching a glimpse of their fashion hits and misses. The New York Times has an article about the event and a slideshow with fashion highlights, as does New York magazine. Emma Watson is all grown up and looked lovely, and Kristen Davis was quite elegant. But I don't know about Carey Mulligan with that petite dress or Tina Fey in that zipper jumper outfit...what were they thinking?? These two pictures are among my favorites. Mariska Hargitay, as always, looked stunning. As for the men, I think Jimmy Fallon was looking rather smart, don't you think? (Image credits: Hiroko Masuike for New York Times and Getty Images for New York magazine)


Sherman Clarke said...

Where's the picture of YOU on the red carpet? You clearly weren't going to wear your zippered thing again, based on the Tina Fey comment.
xo Sherman

bklynbiblio said...

Sherman, would I wear THAT old thing? Never. It's so 1999. I chose yoga over the red carpet this year.