Theme, Guests, Dress Code and More, Explained

Theme, Guests, Dress Code and More, Explained

Karl Lagerfeld was a complicated man, which makes “honoring” his designs all the more challenging for this year’s crop of Met Gala guests. As the celebrities line up for one of the most important fashion events of the year, they’ll have a narrow window in which to steal red carpet attention for the benefit—figuratively and literally—of the Metropolitan Museum of Art’s upcoming Costume Institute exhibit, “Karl Lagerfeld: A Line of Beauty.”

Unlike last year’s famously open-ended “Gilded Glamour” theme, a dress code oriented around Lagerfeld’s works should provide more direction as celebs and their stylists prepare to stun. But homages can just as quickly go terribly wrong. Either way, the world will be watching—and judging. Here’s what we know about this year’s Met Gala so far.

When is the 2023 Met Gala?

The 2023 annual Costume Institute Benefit—better known as the Met Gala, of course—will take place on May 1, 2023, at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City. Live coverage of the red carpet usually starts around 6 p.m. EST, though celebrities are notorious for showing up (fashionably) late.

Who are this year’s co-chairs?

On January 18, the Met announced that the night’s co-chairs will include actress and screenwriter Michaela Coel; actress Penélope Cruz; tennis star Roger Federer; pop sensation Dua Lipa; and—as always—Vogue editor-in-chief and Condé Nast Global CCO Anna Wintour. One notable observation: There are no designers included in this year’s co-chair slate. What that ultimately means for the party remains to be seen.

What is the 2023 Met Gala theme, and what does it mean?

Every year, the Met Gala theme—or, more precisely, the dress code—is tied to the Costume Institute’s spring exhibition. This year’s show is “Karl Lagerfeld: A Line of Beauty,” honoring the late German designer’s devotion to both simple, “serpentine” and “satirical” lines in his collections for Chanel, Fendi, Chlóe, Balmain, Patou, and his eponymous brand from the 1950s to 2019. As such, the Met Gala’s dress code is simply “in honor of Karl,” leaving interpretation wide open to guests.

Given that the Met has also announced both the exhibition and the Gala are supported by Chanel, Fendi, and Karl Lagerfeld itself, you’ll likely see numerous celebrities outfitted in those brands. But let’s hope we see some more creative takes on “honoring” Lagerfeld than simply wearing his old designs.

Who’s invited to the 2023 Met Gala, and who’s going?

In addition to the co-chairs, you can expect the stalwarts, of course: Invites are sure to go out to stars including Jennifer Lopez and Ben Affleck, Zendaya, Selena Gomez, Rihanna, Blake Lively and Ryan Reynolds, the Hadid sisters, the Biebers, Zoë Kravitz, Billie Eilish, and—if we’re lucky—Lady Gaga and Beyoncé, among many, many others. But there’s no official confirmation of their attendance just yet.

The Kardashian-Jenner clan, usually guaranteed guests at the annual party, were initially the subject of conflicting reports when it came to their invite status: Sources told Page Six in March that the hosts were “cracking down on the guest list,” and that therefore the Kardashians and Jenners might not make the VIP list. Another source (one close to the family) denied these rumors. Finally, in April, a source cleared the air with a report that Kim Kardashian is not only invited but confirmed to attend. Whether the rest of her family will strut down the aisle with her is still in question.

Can I go to the Met Gala?

A better question might be, how rich and famous are you? Even if you’ve earned enough notoriety to score one of the elusive invites, you’ll need to cough up several digits to secure a ticket. (Last year, tickets cost $35,000 each, and tables ran between $200,000 and $300,000, per the New York Times.) That said, it’s easy enough to enjoy the Met Gala from afar: The event proceedings are always streamed online, and photos will litter the internet within moments of their upload. Check in on for the latest as the evening goes on; we promise to get you as close to the action as possible.

Culture Writer

Lauren Puckett-Pope is a staff culture writer at ELLE, where she primarily covers film, television and books. She was previously an associate editor at ELLE. 


Rachel Meadows

Rachel Meadows

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