Met Gala Red Carpet Behind-The-Scenes Dress Facts


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I am currently wearing sweatpants.


Rihanna’s 2015 dress was handmade by Guo Pei and took two years to make. Guo didn’t actually know who Rihanna was when she called to ask to borrow the dress — which had a 16-foot train and weighed almost 50 pounds, meaning that Rihanna couldn’t easily walk in it without help.

Dimitrios Kambouris / Getty Images, Mike Coppola / Getty Images, Jamie Mccarthy / FilmMagic

“I imagined a Queen while I was creating this collection. In my opinion, to be a Queen, one needs more charm and responsibility than physical beauty. So I used the weight of the dress and the height of the shoes to embody the difficulty of being a queen, the difficulty of becoming a strong and confident woman,” Guo later explained.


Cardi B’s 2019 “Camp” Thom Browne dress was another literal heavyweight, which required around 10 people to help guide the look down the red carpet. The 44 carats of rubies that acted as nipple covers were valued at a whopping $250,000.

Dimitrios Kambouris / Getty Images, Dimitrios Kambouris / Getty Images for The Met Museum/Vogue, Dia Dipasupil / Getty Images

“I designed this dress for Cardi specifically because she has the ultimate beauty in a woman’s body, and that is what the dress is about for me: taking advantage of that beauty,” Thom told Vogue.


Thierry Mugler came out of retirement to make Kim Kardashian’s 2019 Met Gala look. It took eight months to make and appears to have been inspired, in part, by Sophia Loren’s dress in Boy on a Dolphin. The dress was so tight that Kim couldn’t sit down or use the bathroom.

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Kim said in an episode of Keeping Up with the Kardashians that she would have her sister wipe her leg in case of a bathroom “emergency,” so there’s that.


There’s lots that can be said about Blake Lively’s 2018 “Heavenly Bodies” Versace gown, such as how it took 600 hours to hand make — but let’s take a moment to consider her custom Judith Leiber clutch. The rhinestone bag features the name “Reynolds” as well as the initials “B, R, J, I” — a reference to her family.

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Blake is wearing over $2 million of Lorraine Schwartz jewelry here, including her custom halo, which features over 100 carats of nude champagne diamonds.


Billie Eilish made history last year as the youngest ever co-chair of the Met, but she also made an impact in another way — she got Oscar de la Renta to stop using fur. Yes, Billie only agreed to work with the designer on the condition that the brand no longer sell fur or use it in their designs.

Dimitrios Kambouris / Getty Images for The Met Museum/Vogue, Kevin Mazur / Getty Images For The Met Museum/Vogue

Fernando Garcia, a creative director for Oscar de la Renta, said of the gown, “It felt like a risk for her — it felt like something that made her nervous in a good way. At the end of the day, she’s a girl, and she wants to look pretty.”


A$AP Rocky’s ERL look at the 2021 Met Gala was actually made out of a quilt that someone’s great-grandmother donated to a thrift store.

Theo Wargo / Getty Images, Taylor Hill / WireImage, Dimitrios Kambouris / Getty Images for The Met Museum/Vogue

“I found it amazing that something that my great grandmother made out of love for my mother, to be used to keep her warm, and was donated so that it might keep somebody else warm or sold to raise funds for a lovely charity, ended up being used for an amazing statement art piece by amazingly talented people who took it to the next level,” Sarah, the woman’s great-granddaughter, later said.


Madonna’s 2016 “Manus x Machina” Givenchy look included therapeutic kinesiology tape up her arms, legs, and nipples. She later described the overall look as a “political statement, as well as a fashion statement.”

Kevin Mazur / WireImage, Larry Busacca / Getty Images

“The fact that people actually believe a woman is not allowed to express her sexuality and be adventurous past a certain age is proof that we still live in an age-ist and sexist society. I have never thought in a limited way, and I’m not going to start,” she wrote on Instagram.


It was Sarah Jessica Parker’s idea for Oscar de la Renta to sign his name across the back of her Charles James-inspired 2014 gown.

Kevin Mazur / WireImage, Dimitrios Kambouris / Getty Images, Jamie Mccarthy / FilmMagic

“I said to Mr. de la Renta, please let me use scarlet embroidery thread, and splash your name across the back. It was my idea. He would never in a million years have done it; he’s far too modest,” SJP explained.


Claire Danes’ magical 2016 Zac Posen gown was made from a mixture of organza and fiber optics — with 30 mini battery packs sewn into the gown’s understructure that allowed the gown to light up. Due to the size and structure of the gown, Claire had to take a bus to the Gala.

Jamie Mccarthy / FilmMagic, Larry Busacca / Getty Images, Dimitrios Kambouris / Getty Images

“I went through a sequence of stages throughout the process of draping this gown, playing with motion and structure to capture the emotional engineering. The gown is hollow underneath with no tulle, [so it’s] holding its own structure,” Zac explained.


Finally, Zendaya’s 2018 “Heavenly Bodies” Versace look was inspired by Joan of Arc. Her stylist, Law Roach, said that the idea for the dress first came to him in a dream where he dreamt of the saint.

Sean Zanni / Patrick McMullan via Getty Images, Angela Weiss / AFP via Getty Images, John Shearer / Getty Images for The Hollywood Reporter

“[Zendaya] loves drama,” Law explained. “When you have someone who thrives off it, who loves it, who’s addicted to fashion, we can go drama.”

What looks are your faves? LMK in the comments!

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