The Met Gala is often called “Fashion’s biggest night.” This year, the biggest night pays homage to one of fashion’s greatest designers, Karl Lagerfeld, who died in 2019. Titled, “Karl Lagerfeld: A Line of Beauty,” the exhibition features around 150 original looks from his storied career, alongside their respective original sketches. Lagerfeld often said that he could draw before he could talk, and his illustrations held the secrets to his creative vision. You can learn more about the 2023 Met Gala here.
But we know what you’re really here for—the red carpet! Tonight’s will likely prove to be one of the most glamorous in recent years, thanks to a dress code that simply states “in honor of Karl.” With over six decades of fashion, across labels as varied and iconic as Chanel, Fendi, Chloé, and his own namesake label, there are more than enough archival KL looks to inspire guests. And we suspect a few will be inspired by the man himself, who famously favored slim suits and stiff collars, all in black and white—and let’s not forget his penchant for rock n’ roll accessories like dark sunglasses, fingerless leather gloves, and Chrome Hearts jewelry.
The night isn’t over yet! Make sure you’re following along with all the best post-Met content on Vogue.com for behind the scenes footage, and a look at the best after parties. To keep going just like the celebs—grab a cup of Starbucks espresso and keep that serotonin going.
Rihanna: Master of the Quick Change
Leave in a vintage Fendi fur…
Arrive in a custom Valentino couture dress made of silk faille cape embellished with over 30 fabric camellias that featured 500 petals each.
Janelle Monáe Brings a Furry Plus One
This is not the main stage of Ru Paul’s Drag Race, but that never stopped some of Hollywood’s brightest stars from offering a reveal on the Met steps—Lady Gaga is perhaps the most memorable example, with her multi-layered Brandon Maxwell outfit-cum-performance at the 2019 Gala.
Tonight, Janelle Monáe and Thom Browne offered their own take. The singer and actor removed her exaggerated trapezoidal black and white tweed tuxedo jacket to reveal a black tulle pannier dress worn over a pearl string bikini and astronaut boots. But the cherry on top? A white pebble leather Choupette bag.
Stella McCartney’s Succession Story
On the red carpet today, Stella McCartney, who succeeded Karl Lagerfeld at Chloé when he left the French maison in 1997, shared a story of the designer's reaction when they named her as his successor. “He said ‘I knew they would need a big name to replace me, I just didn’t know it would be a big name in music',” she recalled.
Kylie’s Courtship with Haider Continues
We first saw Kylie and Haider Ackermann together when she attended his show as guest couture designer for Jean Paul Gaultier earlier this year—which is also where the internet says she met Timothée Chalamet (but I’ll leave you all to speculate about that). Tonight at the Met, Kylie wore a custom bodycon red dress paired with a periwinkle blue cape. She was one of the few attendees on the red carpet daring to step away from black and white.
Camila Morrone Looks Fresh As a Daisy in Rodarte
The Daisy Jones & the Six star looks fresh as a daisy on the Met Gala carpet in look 18 from the fall 2023 ready-to-wear collection.
Jenna Ortega is Tangled in Chanel Chains
Jenna took the Met steps tonight in Thom Browne. The Wednesday actress wore a black chiffon tweed cropped jacket paired with a matching deconstructed coat draped as a skirt. Accentuating her look were 1000 hand-applied crystals, gold bullion embroidery, and pearl chains scattered throughout in reference to Chanel’s iconic handbag chains. “Disrupted precision and deconstructed tailoring” is how the brand described Ortega’s look.
Bad Bunny Se Porta Bonito in Jacquemus
Benito Antonio Martinez Ocasio, aka Bad Bunny, arrived tonight wearing custom Jacquemus: a backless shirt and jacket and a taffeta train embroidered with flowers that was over two feet long. He arrived alongside the designer, who was sporting a matching backless shirt and jacket, but in black.
Jill Kargman References Both Karl and Coco
Jill Kargman channeled both Coco Chanel and Karl Lagerfeld in her look. She knows the house and its designer well as her father was a longtime president of Chanel. Kargman’s headpiece looks like one worn by Coco herself and referenced by Karl Lagerfeld in his spring 1996 couture collection. The half gloves, though, are pure K-A-R-L.
And the Train of the Night Goes to: Jeremy Pope
Ever since Rihanna stunned us all in Guo Pei back in 2015, most Met Galas have featured a star in a dramatic train. Tonight it was all about Jeremy Pope’s Balmain look, its oversized train featuring an image of Karl’s famous profile. Balmain’s creative director, Olivier Rousteing, wore a handbag with the words “Karl Who?” sprayed painted on—a nod to Karl, of course, but also to Jean-Michel Basquiat, who Pope is currently playing on-stage.
Elle Fanning Remembers Her First Encounter with Karl
On the red carpet today, Elle Fanning shared that her Andreas Kronthaler for Vivienne Westwood-designed wood faerie look was inspired by her first-ever fashion show, the 2011 Chanel hate couture show. After the show, he asked to photograph her for his Little Black Jacket look. “I had on a white dress and all he did was put on a daisy crown,” she described. “I thought, this is what Karl wanted me to look like, so this is what I’m doing tonight.” She shared the original photograph on her Instagram.