Innovation

Manus x Machina: Catching a Case of Met Gala Monday

There are Mondays. Then there is the Monday — specifically, the first Monday in May, as a recent documentary dubbed the ever-exclusive and always elegant Met Gala.

Each year, to launch the Spring Exhibition at the Metropolitan Museum of Art's Costume Institute, the museum hosts the Met Gala, one of the year's most high-profile (and stylish) fundraisers. This year's theme — Manus x Machina: Fashion in an age of technology — promises to capture looks inspired by this cultural intersection, in an age where smart watches are fashion statements and no wardrobe decision is made minus a selfie or a snap to your followers.

The theme of this year's gala is timely, given recent attention on tech in the fashion industry. The narrative was originally inspired by the tension between hand-sewn looks on machine-built garments. Andrew Bolton, the curator in charge of the Costume Institute, explains in a recent Vogue profile that he was inspired by Yves Saint Laurent, who created a Mondrian dress, built by "machina."

"The only presence of the hand was the hem and part of the lining, and the zipper," Bolton tells Vogue. "I began thinking that, in actual fact, the gap between high-end ready-to-wear and couture is getting smaller."

This theme popped up again when designer Karl Lagerfeld sent a wedding dress down the runway that was created on a machine but embroidered over some 450 hours. That dress inspired a key piece in this May's exhibit: a 20-foot wedding train that was laser cut, printed, hand painted, repainted and embroidered.

As far as what everyone will wear? We'll just have to wait and see, on a day when all of fashion social media holds its breath to ogle the looks. Until then, we only have hints — such as co-chair Taylor Swift suggesting that she'll dress as a "robot with a sword." Chic.