From Sketch To Dress, This Is How Ariana DeBose’s Met Gala Gown Came To Life


“What does gilded glamour mean to me?” Jeremy Scott asks, musing on the creative origins of his designs for this year’s Met Gala red carpet. “Well, gilded glamour to me means gold!” We’d expect nothing less from fashion’s greatest showman, who remembers hearing the announcement of the theme and feeling like it was kisme: His fall 2022 collection for Moschino was inspired by gilded furniture. (Backstage, Scott was even wearing a sweater that read “gilt without guilt.”) “I was already working on all these gold trims and these different embroideries,” he says. “So I was already in this mood—it seemed very fitting.”

When it came to making a dress for this year’s breakout Hollywood star, Ariana DeBose—who recently picked up an Oscar for her role as Anita in Steven Spielberg’s West Side Story—Scott’s plan was to balance the baroque opulence of his fall runway with a nod to DeBose’s love for a glamorous Old Hollywood gown. “I don’t really think about dresses until I think about a person, because it really is about the person for me,” Scott says. “I want to bring their beauty to life and their personality alive.” Having worked with DeBose a number of times during her awards season run last year, he explains, collaborating with her again for the Met was a no-brainer. “I just fell in love with her,” says Scott. “Her outspoken nature about the LGBTQ+ community, and her role within the community as a queer person—that really resonated for me.”

When it came to the dress itself, Scott notes that DeBose was keen to push the boat out—and when you’re looking to push the boat out with your fashion, there are few better partners than Scott. “She said, ‘I want to go really bold and do something wilder and something more daring,’” Scott remembers. “So she and I took that idea and came up with this gown that was embellished to the high heavens with sequins, gold bullion embroidery, and the cut-out on the chest, with a little tulle train as a nod to the bustles of the Gilded Age silhouette.”

The process of designing the dress, Scott says, took him back to the origins of his love for fashion; back to when he was a young boy growing up in the rural Midwest. “I still have that very earnest, childlike love and passion and enthusiasm for fashion,” says Scott. “I want to give that same thing that I love back to everyone else who sees my work. I want them to feel that same excitement and enthusiasm.” Thankfully, DeBose was very much feeling it, especially when she tried on the dress in her hotel room for the first time. “This is just everything I love, the silhouette, the gold—I’m so excited,” says DeBose. “Let’s do the Met Gala 2022!”

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