One of the the biggest fashion events in the world is the annual Met Ball. Every year the gala at The Metropolitan Museum of Art has a different theme, related to the Costume Institute exhibit at the museum. Attendees scramble for months leading up to the event to make sure they wear something that uniquely, and glamorously, embraces the theme. The theme for the 2016 Met Ball was just announced and we couldn’t be more excited: Manus x Machina: Fashion in an Age of Technology. And in an interesting twist, Apple’s Chief Design Officer, Jony Ive, will chair the event along with Taylor Swift, Idris Elba, Anna Wintour, Nicolas Ghesquière, Karl Lagerfeld, and Miuccia Prada.
The Costume Institute and Met Ball embracing the concept of fashion and technology suggests we are approaching a tipping point of the two’s relationship; we are moving closer to a world where fashion and tech are deeply intertwined. While much of the exhibit will look at modern manufacturing techniques and how they are influencing fashions at all price points, the inclusion of Jony Ive also indicates a focus on wearable technology. Given the daringness of most outfits worn to the gala, we cannot wait to see how guests push the idea of fashion tech. While we have seen a few stunning outfits incorporating everything from reactive fabrics to LEDs, these have been one-offs or something shown at tiny fashion events. The Met Ball has the potential to be the real coming out party for fashion tech.
If your invite to the Met Ball on May 2nd, gets lost in the mail (ours usually does), you will be able to check out the Costume Institute’s exhibit at The Metropolitan Museum of Art. It will consist of over 100 looks which, according to Vogue, “will focus on the dichotomy between handmade haute couture and machine-made fashion.” Andrew Bolton, curator of the Costume Institute, elaborates, “Traditionally, the distinction between the haute couture and prêt-à-porter was based on the handmade and the machine-made. But recently this distinction has become increasingly blurred as both disciplines have embraced the practices and techniques of the other.” Traditional techniques such as embroidery, pleating, and lacework will be shown along side laser cutting, thermo shaping, and circular knitting. There will also be several “in-process” workshops showcasing cutting edge technologies such as 3D printing.