Mugler, Ensemble, Autumn/Winter 1984-1985

One of the best parts on being located on the Upper East Side is that we are mere steps from the infamous Metropolitan Museum of Art. A few weeks ago, the Met unveiled its newest costume exhibition, "Heavenly Bodies: Fashion and the Catholic Imagination" at their annual star-studded red carpet event (Check out our post on our favorite Met Gala red carpet looks here). This past holiday weekend we had the chance to experience this ornate exhibition in person.

Rodarte, Kate Mulleavy, Laura Mulleavy, Ensembles 2011

Walking into the Medieval and Byzantine Art area of the Met feels as if you are walking into an old monumental church. Crowds solemnly look up at the raised platforms of glittering Dolce & Gabbana and Versace garments like saints coming down from heaven. The overall exhibition is incredibly dramatic, featuring many show-stopping looks from designers like Jean-Paul Gaultier and Christian Lacroix. The entire vibe is almost eerie, with the brooding architecture of the museum itself looming over you paired with the sounds of solemn church organ music that plays as you walk through the presentation.


Christian Lacroix, wedding ensemble, Autumn/Winter 2009-2010 Haute Couture

Garments inspired by the religious clergymen and women, like nuns and cardinals, line the walls of the main Medieval area. The garments fit so well with the surrounding art it is as if they have always been a part of the museum. The link between the art and the fashion flows seamlessly, with garments and the artwork complimenting each other perfectly.

House of Dior, John Galliano, evening ensemble, Autumn/Winter 2000-2001 Haute Couture

The icing on the cake though is the treasure trove of papal garments sent directly from the Vatican showcased cleanly in the Anna Wintour Costume Center. These special garments worn by leaders of the Catholic church date back to the early 1800’s! From delicately embroidered vestments to even Pope John Paul II’s red shoes, this part of this exhibition is a gold mine, and presented in such a tasteful and respectful way.

House of Dior, John Galliano, “Madonna” wedding ensemble, Autumn/Winter 2005-2006 

So the next time you’re in our New York City neighborhood, stop by Michael's for some designer consignment and then spend the rest of the day in the cool halls of the Metropolitan Museum of Art.

Read more about the exhibition here:

The Metropolitan Museum of Art
May 30, 2018 — Tracie Pfrogner


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