In most situations, canceling an event with six week’s notice is more than enough time to halt preparations before too much effort has been made. The Met Gala, however, isn’t one of those situations. So even though no red carpet was rolled out last night, many A-listers are taking to Instagram to share details about the looks they would’ve sported, if not for COVID-19. Because, of course, they had it planned out already. Wouldn’t you?
Starting in early March, following announcements that major cultural events and destinations, including the Louvre, Coachella, Broadway, and more relevantly, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, were closing up shop in an effort to halt the spread of COVID-19, rumors about whether or not the Costume Institute’s annual benefit would take place on the first Monday in May began to spread. At first, the overwhelming response was that the show must go on. But after much speculation, Vogue gave the final word: The 2020 Met Gala had been canceled.
But preparatory measures for most of the night’s guest list were already well underway. After all, Rihanna’s canary yellow Guo Pei cape — the one with the fur trim and stunning embroidery — from the 2015 Met Gala took two years to construct. "[What] I want is to make them remember," Pei told The Cut of the look. Hint: They have. Rihanna’s dress titled Magnificent Gold was later put on display at that year’s “China Through the Looking Glass” Costume Institute exhibition. In total, it took 50,000 hours to create.
Rihanna is hardly the only A-lister whose Met Gala ensemble involved its fair share of planning.
In a fitting that aired on Keeping Up With The Kardashians, Kim Kardashian West can be seen doing the most to prepare for the 2019 Camp-themed Met Gala, where she wore a figure-hugging dress designed by Thierry Mugler. “I used to dream about this night,” she said, eyes glittering. For the look, she had a corset made by fashion’s more revered corset-maker Mr. Pearl, one that made her waist look almost unnaturally small. But the theme was camp, so that was sort of the point.
The same level of time and money — not to mention blood, sweat, and tears — was being spent on this year’s Met Gala theme, that is, until it was canceled. Katy Perry is proof of that. The singer, who has been known to go the extra mile for the Met Gala, shared details of the dress she’d planned on wearing on the first Monday in May — and it was Madonna-themed.
In an Instagram post captioned, “what would have been... #TheMetBall2020," Perry reveals a Jean Paul Gaultier bustier, featuring a cone-shaped bra not unlike Madonna’s from the 1990 Blond Ambition Tour. Madonna’s original design was also designed by Gaultier.
A number of her fellow invitees also took to Instagram to share details about the looks they would have sported, if the show, did, in fact, go on.