It seems like it was just yesterday that Anne Hathaway turned heads with a tweed Versace gown at the 2023 Met Gala, paying tribute to the late Karl Lagerfeld. And yet, as 2024 draws nearer, it’s already time to start thinking about next year’s iteration of fashion’s biggest night. This morning, Vogue announced that the theme of the 2024 Costume Institute Gala will be “Sleeping Beauties: Reawakening Fashion.”
While the phrase “Sleeping Beauties” may evoke images of Disney princesses, the first Monday in May will not revolve around fairy tales. Instead, it’s a nod to the fragility of the museum’s fashion collection, which requires meticulous preservation akin to placing the pieces in glass “coffins,” according to the Costume Institute curators.
“It’s pretty much an ode to nature,” Andrew Bolton, the head curator of the Costume Institute, told the New York Times. “Nature as a metaphor for fashion and for its fragility and its ephemerality.”
Following the gala on May 6, the “Sleeping Beauties: Reawakening Fashion” exhibit will open its doors on May 10 and run through September 2. Enthusiasts can look forward to an exhibition showcasing approximately 250 items spanning four centuries, including rare garments that have seldom been displayed in public, let alone worn again. The “Sleeping Beauties” are these notable pieces that are historical and beautiful, but will never be able to be reworn, and will include an Elizabethan-era bodice and 21st-century acquisitions by acclaimed designers like Philip Lim, Stella McCartney and Connor Ives. The exhibit will breathe new life into these fragile pieces through technology, according to Bolton.
This year’s co-chairs (aside from permanent co-chair Anna Wintour) haven’t been announced just yet, nor has the actual dress code , but it typically plays off and complements the larger theme. With TikTok and Loewe co-sponsoring the exhibit, it seems safe to say we can expect to see many of Jonathan Anderson’s designs on the red carpet.
As always the official list of invites and attendees won’t be public knowledge until the red carpet arrivals, which Vogue will livestream. Met Gala fans are also likely crossing their fingers for the return of the inimitable Blake Lively, who, along with husband Ryan Reynolds, was notably absent from this year’s festivities.
With an impressive lineup of sponsors and attendees who will undoubtedly bring their sartorial best, coupled with an exciting exhibit, it’s safe to say that “Sleeping Beauties: Reawakening Fashion” will be an event for the fashion history books.