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Katy PerryPhotography Andrew Tess

The 2021 Met Ball’s theme has been revealed

Yeehaw! This year’s comeback event will be a two-pronged, American-themed extravaganza

Rumours first started bubbling last week that the Met Gala may be making an autumnal return, having taken a year’s sojourn from fashion flippery due to the coronavirus. Today, its organisers Anna Wintour and Andrew Bolton (of the Costume Institute of the Metropolitan Museum of Art), have announced an official comeback with two separate exhibitions – meaning there will be two separate Met Galas and more importantly: two whole sets of lewks

As UK pubs wrench open their patio doors, it would seem it’s not just the pint-pining Brits in need of a night out out. Exhibition number one – titled In America: A Lexicon of Fashion – will open on September 18, and will explore the “modern vocabulary of American fashion”. Think Kerby Jean-Raymond, Eckhaus Latta, and Collina Strada. The second iteration, In America: An Anthology of Fashion, will mark a return to the Met’s usual scheduling on May 2, 2022, and will look back to America’s sartorial past. See Oscar de la Renta, Diane von Furstenberg, and Carolina Herrera. 

While the dress codes of both Galas have yet to be formally announced, it’s safe to say that it will likely be an all-American affair. Cut to Jason Derulo falling down the stairs in a Ralph Lauren polo, Katy Perry edging her way towards a hot dog stand wearing a polystyrene Statue of Liberty cut-out, and Lady Gaga unveiling herself from a stack of Telfar shoppers like a Russian nesting doll. As America enters a new era under Biden, are we about to witness the renewal of Americana: all stars and stripes, solo cups, varsity jackets, and trucker hats? 

Conceptualising aside, the theme makes sense given the pandemic’s limitations on travel and loans. 80 percent of the clothes on exhibition will come from the Met’s own vaults, with only one garment originating from outside the US. “We very consciously wanted this to be a celebration of the American fashion community, which suffered so much during the pandemic,” Bolton told The New York Times.“I think American fashion is undergoing a renaissance, with young American designers at the vanguard of discussions around diversity, inclusion, sustainability and conscious creativity. I find it incredibly exciting.”