American Independence? What does that mean?
Your guess is as good as mine! Odds are very high, however, that it means American designers — and not just the big brands we are used to seeing on the red carpet, like Tom Ford, Michael Kors, Ralph Lauren, Tory Burch and company. Look out for newer, more avant-garde names (Collina Strada, Area, Christopher John Rogers, Pyer Moss) and some poetic license with the semiology of the country. Given the literal expressions of past themes, though, you may also expect a lot of red, white and blue, some star-spangled stripiness and a Lady Liberty or two.
We asked Ms. Gorman if she would give us a hint about what she was wearing, but she declined, saying even her mother didn’t know. Ms. Wintour did let slip, however, that many of the guests Vogue is advising are requesting vintage. Also, she will be wearing “a homage” to her “dear friend, Oscar de la Renta.”
Vintage! I like what that says about sustainability. OK, what if I want to go?
Good luck. Unlike other cultural fund-raisers, like the Metropolitan Opera gala or the Frick Collection Young Fellows ball, the Met gala is invitation only.
Qualifications for inclusion have to do with buzz and achievement (and beauty) — a.k.a., the gospel according to Anna — more than money. Ms. Wintour has final say over every invitation and attendee, which means that even if a company buys a table, it cannot choose everyone who sits at its table. It must clear the guest with her and Vogue and pray for approval.
Who does get to go?
This year, about 400 Chosen Ones, on a guest list guarded with the obsessive secrecy of the Illuminati members roll. But keep an eye out for Tracee Ellis Ross, ASAP Rocky, Lourdes Leon, Taraji P. Henson and Simone Biles.