Going Back In Time: Popular Met Gala Themes Till 2024

Going Back In Time: Popular Met Gala Themes Till 2024

Met Gala, the biggest night in fashion, needs no introduction. It was the 6th of May, 2024, when the most reputed names in fashion came under one roof. And the best part about the event? It’s all a hush-hush affair!

Nobody knows which celebs are coming, what they’ll be wearing, and what the theme of the event is. Yes, Met Gala themes also make headlines because of their uniqueness. This year’s theme was Sleeping Beauties: Reawakening Fashion.

These themes not only bring out the dress code for the year but also challenge designers to portray their masterpieces. Let’s dive deeper into the article and have a look at the most popular themes of the Met Gala to date. 

The History Of Met Gala: How Did It All Start?

The History Of Met Gala_ How Did It All Start_

Lambert founded Met Gala in 1948, which was a popular fashion publicist back then. As we understand it, the event isn’t just about fashion; it begins as a means of fundraising for the Costume Institute. 

Along with giving the Met Gala the recognition it deserved, Lambert is also the founder of America’s Fashion Designers Council. Aline Bernstein, along with Irene Lewisohn, established the Costume Institute, which eventually came to be known as the Museum of Costume Art. 

It later joined the Museum of Metropolitan Art in 1946. 

The very first Gala wasn’t much of a hype; it was a plain dinner with tickets worth $50 each. From its inception, the event took place in locations like the Central Park of the Rainbow Room, unlike today. 

Presently, the Met is regarded as one of the largest fundraising events in New York City, raising over $175 million till now. 

Renowned Met Gala Themes That Made Statements All These Years

Renowned Met Gala Themes That Made Statements All These Years

Ever since the Met Gala was introduced, it has remained in the limelight. From controversies to celeb beef, the event is always in the headlines for some or the other reason. But this year, the distinctive theme made statements. Let’s have a look at some popular themes all these years:

Honoring Jacqueline Kennedy in 2001

The 2001 Met Gala coincided 40 years after Jacqueline Kennedy became the First Lady at the White House. The theme was in her honor, as she had an impeccable impact on both the country’s fashion and style. 

Caroline Kennedy, Jacqueline’s daughter, was looking the prettiest as she donned a Carolina Herrera gown in white. 

Goddess In 2003: The Classical Mode

Due to the 9/11 attacks, the event was canceled in 2002. But the following year came much stronger with the theme- “Goddess: The Classical Mode.”

Nicole Kidman looked like the Greek Goddess as she shined in Ton Fod’s Gucci outfit. Not only did it perfectly capture the 2003 theme, but it was also the most iconic in the event’s history. 

2004 Theme On Dangerous Liaisons: 18th Century Fashion and Furniture

When we talk about luxury in the 1700s, we immediately go back to Loius XV and Louis XVI. They were in power from 1723–74 and 1774–92, respectively, and the 2004 Met Gala theme was inspired by their lifestyles. 

The collection also revolved around “furniture” and “fashion,” blending ideals of pleasure and beauty through their embellishments. 

The House Of Chanel In 2005

2005’s Gala was to honor and cherish the House of Chanel, where the biggest stars of that time wore archival Chanel outfits, thus contemplating modernism with tradition. 

AngloMania in 2006: British Fashion Transgression and Tradition

2006’s Met Gala centered around AngloMania and transgression in British Fashion. In all these years, this theme was very distinctive, and one of its kind, influenced by fashion in Europe around the 18th century. 

Poiret: King Of Fashion in 2007

Unlike other Met Gala themes, the 2007 theme celebrated the work as well as the life of master couturier and designer Paul Poiret. 

This designer initially brought a kimono-sleeved coat, the lampshade outfit, and hobble skirts to fame. 

2008- Superheroes: Fashion & Fantasy

2008’s theme focused on superhero-inspired outfits combined with real outfits from superhero movies. Hence, this theme was too diversified. Sadly, it was criticized for various reasons. 

Anna Wintour, Sienna Miller, and Christopher Bailey were the co-chairs of the event. 

The Model as Muse: Embodying Fashion in 2009

2009’s theme was The Model as Muse, which embraced iconic fashion models who reigned in the 20th century. Some of the most renowned names were Jerry Hall, Iman, Naomi Campbell, and even Twiggy. 

2010 and 2011’s Gala Themes

The theme of 2010 was all about honoring American Women who represented fashion as their national identity. Models came dressed as artists who belonged to the era 1890-1940. 

On the other hand, the 2011 theme honored Alexander McQueen, who was a popular designer of the year but passed away tragically. 

Impossible Conversations: Prada and Schiaparelli in 2012 

If there was a theme that juxtaposed some memorable works of Miuccia Prada and Elsa Schiaparelli, it was the 2012 Gala. Most of the celebs showing up at the event made entries in Prada outfits. 

From Chaos to Couture: 2013’s Met Theme Was Punk

We all know how famous Punk was in the early 1970s. Well, it extended its inspiration to 2013’s Met Gala, which influenced almost all cultural aspects, from art to music and even fashion. 

The Gala theme of this particular year looked upon punk, which had turned down the whole meaning of fashion in the 70s. 

Distinctive Themes In 2014 & 2015

Met Gala themes in 2014 and 2015 were unique as well. While the former year-honored American-English designer Charles James, in 2015, looked over China’s dominance in Western culture and fashion.

2016’s Manus x Machina Theme

When fashion blends with the technological era, it generates something epic. And that’s exactly what happened in 2016. 

Stars donned intricately designed couture featuring technology and futurism motifs. 

Rei Kawakubo/Comme des Garçons- 2017

In 2017, the Met Gala took things a step higher by hailing Rei Kawakubo, who was a legendary designer from Japan. Miranda Kerr resembled a pretty doll in a red poppy Oscar de la Renta gown. 

Heavenly Bodies In 2018: Celebrating Fashion With Catholic Imagination

This particular theme has been regarded as the best theme of the Met Gala for various reasons. 2018’s Heavenly Bodies theme witnessed big-time celebs in the most fashionable outfits. 

I mean, who can forget Amal Clooney’s look of hybrid Richard Quinn? She certainly drew all the limelight towards herself. 

2019- Camp: Fashion Notes

2019 was the year of the Met Gala’s Camp theme. For most enthusiasts, this theme has been very inspiring as it featured Susan Sontag’s essay on “Camp.” This essay note revolved around the performance that murmured “bad taste.” 

Julianne Moore certainly drew all the attention that year!

About Time: Duration and Fashion in 2020

Nobody has been uninformed about everything that has been going on in 2020. Although the theme was decided around time, the show eventually got canceled due to the pandemic. 

2020’s theme had collections that traced fashion icons between 1870-2020. 

2021 & 2022’s “In America” Theme

Both 2021 and 2022 had quite similar met gala themes. Here are some details: 2021’s theme celebrated American designers who have been shaping the USA’s fashion identity and scene. 

On the other hand, the 2022 Met Gala was a continuation of the previous theme based on American fashion. Unlike focusing on current designers, 2022’s theme looked at the whole American fashion. 

Karl Langerfield: 2023’s Theme 

Late designer Kart Lagerfield was honored in the Met Gala theme of 2023. Lagerfeld designed some popular outfits for Chloé, Krizia, Valentino and Chanel. You’ll be surprised to hear who the co-chairs of this event were!

Michaela Coel, Anna Wintour, and Dua Lipa were some renowned co-chairs, and Nicole Kidman, along with other stars, rocked the event. 

2024 Theme on Sleeping Beauties: Reawakening Fashion

Met Gala in 2024 was something else altogether. The theme- ‘Sleeping Beauties: Reawakening Fashion,’ brought fairy tale vibes to the event. It also had potential interpretations, from literal analyses to fairy tale-esque couture. 

Reawakening Fashion also focused on the delicacy and significance of archival fashion. This accompanying collection features more than 250 branded outfits spanning four centuries. 

Which Was The Most Controversial Met Gala Theme? 

Out of all the themes that have been mentioned above, the 2018’s Heavenly Bodies theme was the most controversial. The reason behind the controversy was linked to some religious beliefs. 

When celebs entered the event with outfits resembling religions, social media users got furious and started sharing negative comments. 

An X-user wrote, “My religion is not your Met Gala outfit,” thus signifying the impact of the theme on commoners. 

The Bottom Line

So, that’s all about popular and controversial met gala themes of all time. These themes have gained massive attention from all over the world. 

While some were embraced, others were disgusted. However, the impact of the Met Gala on mainstream media channels continues to be dominating as it is the biggest night of celebrating fashion. 

With that, here comes an end to this article. Thank you for reading till the end. Do not forget to comment down your favorite theme!

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