The most waited and beloved Monday in New York City has taken a hiatus and rested in peace for the year. In light of the current pandemic and the COVID-19 restrictions, the Met Gala didn’t happen and not even one majestic piece made its debut in front of our eyes. However, the Internet has taken off with the #metgalachallenge, a trending social media challenge full of colors, styles, and creative ideas that emulate the most iconic pieces ever presented at the Met Gala.
The challenge was a Vogue Magazine initiative. Whoever wanted to participate had to choose a look and replicate it with all the tools and materials available in their households.
One of the most remarkable participant has been Sanja Nestovoric, a Serbian bartender and fashionista based in New York City. She has taken her passion in dressing up and curating looks on another level, by recreating iconic Met Gala pieces. Sanja was noticed by Vogue and other digital publications, like Today Style and CNN Style.
“I have always had passion for clothes, and dressing up. Once Covid started, and we were globally asked to stay in, I took it as a wake up call in finding myself in a way”, says Sanja. She had already started this hobby even before the challenge was revealed. “ I started this before I found out about the challenge, for both fun and staying sane,” she reveals to Volatile. “I looked around my apartment, and browsed a couple of Met gala and Oscar fashion moments, trying to see what can work best with what else”. Sanja has replicated her pieces with aluminium foils, newspapers, recycling bags, and much more. Her replica- challenge wardrobe goes from Emily Ratajkowski’s Cher-inspired dress to the unforgettable Rihanna’s Pope piece designed by John Galliano. During the quarentine, Sanja has learned to feel gratitude and appreciation. “I have inspired so many friends and brought joy to myself and many others. I plan to continue. This is just the beginning”.
Her intentions are clear and have boosted an interest in her friends too. “This challenge definitely gave me a lot of inspiration during this pandemic. It was super exciting to support my dear friend as she created a new Met Gala design every day and received features in a number of publications, including on Vogue’s social media. Very grateful this short moment gave us a bit of an escape from our current reality”, says Sanja’s friend Abike.
Samantha, who goes by @DECOUTURIZE on Twitter, is member of the HF Met Gala, an annual online Twitter-based companion event to the official MET Gala. She explained what does the Met Gala mean to her. “For me, the Met Gala itself is about art - creation, meaning and expression. Our HF Met Gala companion event, whilst with the same focus, also has other crucial goal - the democratisation of the fashion industry, through increasing accessibility to fashion’s most exclusive night of the year”.
With this challenge,Vogue was able to give a broader access to fashion and its highest ranks in its hierarchy, by recognizing and appreciating creative minds and spirits around the world. We don’t know what the next theme or Gala will occurr, but the abscence of this year’s event has turned out to be a fresh start for the public and the organizers.