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New York’s Costume Institute Gala 2011

Everybody who is anybody was in attendance on Monday night for New York’s Costume Institute Gala, honoring the late British designer Alexander McQueen. A day before the big event, Sarah Burton, fresh from her incredible triumph as Kate’s wedding dress designer, spoke at the Metropolitan Museum of Art about the upcoming event.

Divine Gala Opening

The event Monday night marked the gala opening of “Savage Beauty” a retrospective and exhibition devoted to Alexander McQueen. “He truly was a genius” she recalled.

Now, 100 of his gorgeous designs and 70 of his accessories are on display for what Thomas P. Campbell, the director of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, says is “the most spectacular museum costume exhibition ever mounted anywhere.”

The exhibition is displayed in a series of galleries, exploring McQueen’s interest in death, sex, nature, history, love, religion and romance through his 19 year career.

Bring Out the Stars

And so, Monday night, A-list models, stars and rockers came out to toast McQueen and to honor his legacy.   Many call it the “East Coast Oscars” and the list of attendees certainly made it seem so.   Everyone from Sarah Jessica Parker to Renee Zellweger and Singer Rihanna were there in gorgeous, mouth-watering dresses.

Dinner was served in Dendur, which was decorated with boxwood hedging and which had tables balanced on tree-stumps to show McQueen’s fixation with raw nature.   Florence Welch was the musical entertainment, accompanied by the Machine, a harpist and a choir.

It was certainly a night to remember, and one that will make future fashion designers take note.


James Allenby is the editor of Gowanus Lounge, bringing to his position a vast background on New York, and especially Brooklyn history, culture and lifestyle. Born and bred in the heart of "the County of Kings" James Allenby knows what it means to be a Brooklynite, and imparts this meaning at all times to his readers. Contact James at info(at)gowanuslounge.com.