Top YouTube Fashion Exec reveals Met Gala plans and designer invites
- This year marks the third time that YouTube has invited creators to attend the Met Gala.
- Marques Brownlee, Mark Rober, Léna Mahfouf and Alexa Chung will likely be decked out in Golden Age-inspired clothing.
- The elite event has welcomed creators for the past few years and attracted a significant online audience.
YouTube tech critic Marques Brownlee and NASA engineer-turned-scientific designer Mark Rober aren’t the first names that come to mind when you think of the cutting-edge world of high fashion. But the two designers will be decked out in “Gilded Age”-themed outfits on Monday night as two of YouTube’s guests at this year’s Met Gala.
On behalf of the video giant, French lifestyle vlogger Léna Mahfouf, who has 2.2 million subscribers, and British model and designer Alexa Chung are also present. On the executive front is YouTube’s head of fashion and beauty, Derek Blasberg.
The annual fundraising soiree, benefiting the Metropolitan Museum and organized by Vogue, has been welcoming more and more digital influencers into its airtight fold in recent years – much to the chagrin of some critics.
At the same time, Vogue has increasingly sought to give at-home viewers a deeper look at the traditionally veiled festivities on social media — mostly in the form of red carpet coverage and with me prep videos, because telephones are still prohibited. inside the event.
The Met Gala’s shift to social media has been supercharged by the pandemic, Blasberg told Insider.
“The events of 2020 marked a huge change in the fashion world, perhaps the biggest change since World War II, which was the last time Fashion Weeks as we knew them were disrupted,” said he declared. “When it was unsafe to travel overseas and meet in large groups due to Covid-19, the industry refined its digital storytelling efforts…As a result, we’ve seen an increase significance of traditional fashion industry players collaborating with endemic YouTube creators.”
YouTube is filled with fashion content, but first doubled down on forging industry partnerships in 2018 with the hiring of Blasberg. The following year, the company launched a organized repository for all fashion and beauty content, which will host this year’s Met Gala videos. Senior leaders also continue to list shopping as a key focus area.
Cultural cache and huge increase in viewership
YouTube isn’t the only platform that wants a bite of Met Gala culture
– as well as the audience it generates online.
Last year, Vogue first streamed red carpet arrivals on its Twitter account, garnering 15 million views, by variety. In total, the fashion magazine said Met Gala content accounted for 200 million views across all social channels.
Instagram also sponsored last year’s gala and CEO Adam Mosseri is expected to attend as honorary president for the second consecutive year. In addition to Twitter, Vogue’s red carpet arrival broadcast – hosted this year by editor Hamish Bowles and actresses Vanessa Hudgens and Lala Anthony – will be streamed live on Instagram and Facebook.
YouTube, for its part, said videos from the Met Gala racked up 650 million views in 2021, and that 35 videos – including red carpet interviews hosted by Emma Chamberlain and preparation videos with me from Billie Eilish and Blackpink’s Rosé – appeared on Trending tabs in 70 countries. Blasberg said post-event coverage, including fashion reviews from designers like HauteLeMode and Mina Le, also contributed to the tally.
“Each year we see a significant increase in style-related traffic and content around the first Monday in May, which is why we feel responsible for representing the event well,” he said.
Recognize a pop culture shift
This year’s theme will see attendees decked out in accordance with the “Gilded Glamour, white tie” dress code shown on the invitations. The event will raise funds for a corresponding exhibition at the Met titled “In America: An Anthology of Fashion.” This means that the appearance pay homage to New York’s Golden Agefrom about 1870 to 1890.
YouTube’s ties to the Met Gala date back to 2018, when Blasberg was hired, he said. It was the year Liza Koshy first hosted red carpet interviews for Vogue’s YouTube channel. In 2021, these functions were assumed by Chamberlain. A YouTube spokesperson declined to comment on this year’s red carpet plans.
In 2019, the company first invited creators to attend on its behalf, including James Charles and Lilly Singh. The event was canceled in 2020. In 2021, YouTube hosted NikkieTutorials, Jackie Aina, and Eugene Lee Yang. He also invited Addison Rae, who rose to fame on TikTok but also operates a little-used YouTube channel.
The New York Times reported last year, individual tickets to the Met Gala were priced at $35,000 each, with tables ranging from $200,000 to $300,000.
“As you may or may not know, Anna personally approves every guest who attends the Met Gala each year,” Blasberg said of YouTube’s invitation process. “So our choices are made in tandem with Vogue.”
Accordingly, Blasberg credits the Met Gala creators’ embrace to Wintour herself.
“Anna has been editor-in-chief of Vogue for over three decades, and during that time she’s recognized many changes in pop culture,” he said, “whether it’s putting more celebrities than models on the covers or kissing the Kardashians. I think she understands that as the creative world continues to evolve, so do the voices that contribute to it.”