NOTICE: ‘In America: An Anthology of Fashion’ features the 2022 Met Gala

Despite gruesome attempts to cultivate aspects of consumerism, the American Dream and quintessential Westernized fashion at last year’s Met Gala, Anna Wintour chose another America-centric theme.

The 2021 Met Gala was “In America: A Lexicon of Fashion” to accompany the Metropolitan Museum of Art’s exhibition of the same name. The “purpose” of the gala is to raise money for the museum’s costume institute, and it functions as a kind of glamorous fundraiser. The 2022 exhibit continues to follow this Americanized look at fashion, titled “In America: An Anthology of Fashion,” as if that sounds different from last year.

Despite an enigmatic name once again centered on American designers and themes, several outlets unmasked the beast and called this year’s Met Gala “golden glamour”, citing the Gilded Age of New York as being main inspirations.

The Golden Age was the pinnacle of luxury and extravagance. New York was known for its stunning architecture and mansions, with the Metropolitan Opera House and the Vanderbilt House being built during this period. These public displays of wealth were also accompanied by opulence in other forms, such as fashion.

So, with a theme of excessive wealth in mind, what does this mean for fashion at the 2022 Met Gala?

First of all, I think this Met Gala will see a good amount of followers of the theme. Despite past attempts to camp and replicate Rei Kawakubo, this year’s fundraiser may more closely follow the lines of the 2018 Met Gala, Heavenly Bodies: Fashion and the Catholic Imagination, with celebrities donning extravagantly themed looks. .

In the past, Met Galas had only one problem in mind: not letting celebrities be pretty! I don’t expect Karlie Kloss understand the field, or that gold mini dress right, but I expect her to slip on a cute little gold dress and strut the red carpet. “In America: An Anthology of Fashion” will let attendees dress like a late 1800s dream, and they’ll look good while doing it — something that drives most Met Gala fashion.

With that in mind, I also expect to see a bunch of heterosexual celebrities wearing black suits that are slightly on-theme in one way or another. Perhaps they will have a puffy collar or a top hat to affirm that they too fully embody the golden age. Maybe Shawn Mendes will put the gold back in his hair and claim he sums up the absurd displays of wealth of the time. Most likely, there will be several black suits with no personality, and I won’t be surprised to see them there.

On the other side of the fashion spectrum, I think this year’s Met will also bring in a lot of people who think they are on theme. The Netflix series “Bridgerton” had its second season at the end of March and despite its own costume history inaccuracy, the fashion is based on the Regency era in England. The Regency era falls before the Gilded Age and is also based in the central United Kingdom of Great Britain. Fashion is incredibly different in these two periods, with the Regency era sticking to an empire waist silhouette, while the Golden Age has more corseted looks. However, I’m anticipating a few “Bridgerton-inspired” outfits on the carpet this year, even if they’re not really on-theme.

My final, and favorite, prediction concerns the political fashion we’ll see at this Met. I’m very excited for guests who may return, like Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez who wore a “tax the rich” dress to the 2021 Met Gala. Personally, I don’t think politicized fashion at an exclusive top 1% event of the top 1% is particularly nuanced or important. However, I find it a bit silly. This year I’m hoping someone will create a 100% solid gold activist fashion look to highlight wealth inequality in the golden age when dress is also personalized and celebrity is also absolutely so rich.

This year’s Met is sure to bring some interesting looks, and I’m just thrilled to see who gets it wrong. If this sounds like the Met Galas of the past, it will be most attendees who misinterpret the theme — and I’m glad to see them do it.

Curren Gauss (she/her) is a junior with a major in English with a minor in dramaturgy. She hopes to one day have a job.



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