A Fashionable 48 Hours Navigating the Met Gala Party Scene

"As Andrew Warren, semi-retired influencer and self-proclaimed male Blair Waldorf, I was absolutely ready to cancel the pre-Met portion of this story. But my inner Kris Jenner simply wouldn’t allow me to sit this one out."

FKA Twigs at the Boom Met Gala after party. Yvonne Tnt/BFA.com

Another Met Monday has come and gone, and I, for one, do not do not plan on going out on a doubleheader Sunday-Monday again for a long, long while. Mentally, I’m all for 31 being the new 21, but physically, my body today is telling me otherwise. I’m still recuperating, but it’s time to talk all things adjacent to the pre- and post-Met festivities

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The keyword here is adjacent, because no, I was not at the Met Gala—I’m just assuming my invite got lost in the mail…again. Perhaps it’s because my, shall we say, “loud” style would take over and the Met Gala red carpet—or at least, that’s what I’m telling myself. 

Let’s start with the pre-Met festivities. It’s Sunday afternoon, and I’ve finally recovered from the previous day. As Andrew Warren, semi-retired influencer and self-proclaimed male Blair Waldorf, I was absolutely ready to cancel the pre-Met Sunday portion of this story. But as a manager, and as part of my not-yet-announced “merge” with Next Management, my inner Kris Jenner simply wouldn’t allow me to sit this one out—nor would Emira D’Spain, who sent me endless texts informing me it was time to get up. Plus, I wanted to continue with this Observer column, too, of course. 

So I forced myself to get out of bed, tossed on a pink off-the-runway Alexander McQueen suit and white leather Celine cowboy boots (a very low-key ensemble) and called an Uber SUV. The night’s agenda included Monse x Pamela Anderson, the UTA Pre-Met Party and Stella McCartney. (Spoiler alert: I never make it to my last stop.) 

Laura Kim, Pamela Anderson and Fernando Garcia at the Monse Maison Pre-Met Cocktail Celebration at La Mercerie. WWD via Getty Images

I use my ridiculously long Uber ride from my never-retired Gossip Girl uptown living situation to the depths of downtown as time to speak to my newly signed client Nyadollie, who I personally think is the beauty industry’s upcoming queen of Tik Tok. A century later, I arrive at La Mercerie on Howard Street just in time to catch Ava Dash (and blame my tardiness on her) before we head inside. I immediately spot Emira D’Spain looking like an IRL Eve from Life Size in a hot pink dress, chatting with Lauren Sanchez

I arrived in time to catch Monse and Oscar de la Renta co-creative directors Fernando Garcia and Laura Kim’s speech. Afterwards Pamela Anderson stood on an ottoman to thank everyone for coming, the DJ went back on and the party continued.

It was a very pink night. Madison Voelkel/BFA.com

Pamela Anderson’s outfit is everything and more, by the way—a casual white blouse paired with a silver chain-style skirt. She’s sticking with the no makeup trend. Standing with Pamela is Matthew Berritt, who I love and who, fun fact, has been Pamela’s right hand man pertaining to all things PR for over seven years. 

I wasn’t drinking, so I grabbed a Fiji Water and contemplated for the millionth time why they seem to sponsor every single event. My energy battery remained at a solid zero, so I tried to hide in a corner and keep conversation and hellos to a minimum. Alas, a hot pink suit isn’t exactly inconspicuous, so it really consisted of me awkwardly trying to hide behind Emira and Ava as I got in some quality people-watching. Doja Cat seemingly appeared out of thin air in a leather cape, and I spotted two of New York’s most fun fashion guests, Ezra J William and Tina Leung, along with Eva Chen, Jeff Bezos and Brandon Thomas Lee.  

Ava Dash. Madison Voelkel/BFA.com

It’s now almost 8 p.m., and Emira and I have to head to Nubeluz by José Andrés in The Ritz-Carlton New York NoMad because we are late to meet her agent, Pranav Mandavia, at the UTA fête. I walked in and it was an immediate vibe—Callie Reiff was in the DJ booth, and Johnny Walker Blue Label was flowing with literal smoke coming out of drinks as everyone from Gabrielle Union, Lizzo, Dwyane Wade, Jamie Dornan, Karlie Kloss and Jodie Turner-Smith flitted about. After I said hi to Ali Berman, UTA’s head of digital talent, Emira and I posed for photos in our maybe coordinated, maybe not pink outfits. Fashionable man about town Eric Rutherford stopped to compliment my suit; I always love when I wear something that isn’t new and get a ton of compliments. 

At this point, it was only 10 p.m., but these 48 hours are a marathon, not a sprint. I gave this away already, but as much as I would have loved to hit Stella McCartney’s pre-party, I ordered an Uber and called it a night. (No, unfortunately, this isn’t sponsored by Uber.)

That brings us to Met Monday. While the events are all fun, I know the work that everyone puts in around the Met Gala. One of my clients had to cancel her flight last minute, so my plans shifted a bit. I texted my friends (who also happen to be clients!) Emira D’Spain and Ava Dash, and we decided to skip the uptown events—mostly because they didn’t want to come uptown. 

Carlos Nazario, Emily Ratajkowski, Paloma Elsesser and Raul Lopez. Zach Hilty/BFA.com

Around 8:30 p.m., I decide it’s time to order the Uber and head to the 9 p.m. Nobu reservation. I arrive at 9:15, and subsequently discover that I am, in fact, the first to check in. The girls text me to order “light bites and drinks,” which turns into me ordering half the menu—I am, unfortunately, the number one over-orderer. I’m sipping my go-to double Clase Azul margarita with a sugar rim when Emira and Ava finally arrive—a casual 45 minutes late. I tell them to chug their drinks and scarf down some food, because we have 10 minutes until it’s time to go, and timing is everything with these parties. We get into yet another Uber, in which Emira must sprawl across a row of  seats in a $4,000 corset dress, and eventually pull up to our first stop, the AprèsMET2 party at the WSA building. 

Kendall Jenner. Rommel Demano/BFA.com

Emily Ratajkowski, Carlos Nazario, Paloma Elsesser, Raul Lopez, Renell Medrano and Francesco Risso are hosting, and the whole atmosphere was honestly an A+, with drapes everywhere, glowing lights and Zack Bia in the DJ  booth. I was thrilled with the music; If deep house had been playing, I probably would have left immediately. I was also pleasantly surprised to find out Clase Azul was handling the bar, and I happily sipped my go-to drink as guests began to filter in, including Bad Bunny, Charli XCX, Daniel Lee, Kendall Jenner, Marc Jacobs, Law Roach, Odell Beckham Jr. and Olivier Rousteing. Lana Del Rey, who was still very on-theme in a floral fairy princess-esque ensemble, posed in front of a champagne tower. 

Lana Del Rey and Vittoria Ceretti. Rommel Demano/BFA.com

The room was only getting more crowded, but by 11:26 I was heading out the door and on my way to stop number two: The FKA Twigs party at Boom Boom Room.

It was an absolute madhouse outside, but luckily the PR spotted Emira and escorted us around the line before I could panic. We got off the elevator, and of course, photos came first. 

FKA Twigs. Yvonne Tnt/BFA.com

Inside, it was a chic ‘90s-inspired moment, with MikeQ and Eli Escobar both playing sets in the DJ booth. In my opinion, Boom Boom Room is the most iconic Met post-party every year, so needless to say, expectations were high. Luckily, this year’s extravaganza did not disappoint—from the moment I walked in, everyone was dancing and taking shots. Lauren Sanchez, Jeff Bezos, Camila Cabello, Sam Smith, Lil Nas X, Pierpaolo Piccioli, Tessa Thompson, A$AP Ferg, Prabal Gurung and LaQuan Smith were all in the crowd, and host FKA Twigs held court from atop the bar, while Christian Siriano and Coco Rocha (in a voluminous hot pink Christian Siriano gown) posed for photos on a banquette.

Camila Cabello and Lil Nas X. Yvonne Tnt/BFA.com

I started out the night planning to hit at least one more party—more specifically, Richie Akiva’s infamous “The After” bash. As I headed into my umpteenth Uber of the evening at 1:30 am, however, I promptly decided it was far past my bedtime and headed home. Until next year!

A Fashionable 48 Hours Navigating the Met Gala Party Scene