The legacy of Met Gala Fashion beyond the red carpet

The outfits are usually given back to the designer, sometimes celebrities keep them


Beyond the trends it sets, the Met Gala is a fundraiser for The Costume Institute of The Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York. The institute displays around 33,000 fashion objects dating back to the seventeenth century. The Met Gala held every May at The Costume Institute has seen many celebrities' iconic and intricate outfits grace its red carpet. Have you wondered what happens to the garments worn by the celebrities once the event is over? 

The outfits are usually given back to the designer. Some display them, while others archive them and use them as an inspiration for future outfits

Some celebrities keep their outfits, especially if there is a reason or sentimental value attached to them. Celebrities Joaquin Phoenix and Nicole Kidman have kept their outfits and reused them. In 2004, Kidman starred in a Channel 5 commercial in a pink tulle gown adorned with feathers and sequins. She wore the same outfit in the 2023 Met Gala. Joaquin Phoenix who is a believer of sustainable clothing wore the same tuxedo for the entire award season in 2020.

Some outfits are often auctioned to raise money for charity. The proceeds go to humanitarian causes held dear by the designer or celebrity. Canadian musician Grimes famously auctioned her 2021 Met Gala accessories to help Black, Indigenous, and People of Colour (BIPOC) families escape Ukraine during the war.

The outfits can be repurposed or redesigned. Donatella Versace’s 1991 Met Gala outfit was repurposed by Jennifer Lopez, who wore it to the Grammy Awards in 2000.

The outfits also tend to be showcased in exhibitions. Rihanna’s 2015 Met Gala outfit can be viewed at the Auckland Art Gallery. In rare cases, the outfits can be sold privately to collectors.  


Join our WhatsApp Channel to get the latest news, exclusives and videos on WhatsApp