The year was 2012 and the theme, “Schiaparelli and Prada: Impossible Conversations”. Comparatively less extravagant than previous years, the annual Costume Institute explored and compared the work of two different Italian designers, born in different eras. Looking to Elsa Schiaparelli and Miuccia Prada, the inspiration for the exhibition was drawn from Miguel Covarrubia’s “Impossible Interviews” for Vanity Fair in the 1930s.

The two women embodied similar themes, but their approach bore striking differences. Perhaps that was Marc Jacob’s thought process when the celebrated designer arrived at the 2012 Met Gala, wearing a sheer lace dress courtesy of Comme des Garçons. The daring look was paired with pilgrim shoes from his own fashion house, crew socks and white boxers.

NEW YORK, NY – MAY 07: Fashion designer Marc Jacobs leaves an after party at the Ukrainian Institute of America on May 7, 2012 in New York City. (Photo by Ray Tamarra/Getty Images)

“It’s just a lace dress” Jacobs said on the event’s livestream during his red carpet arrival. “I just didn’t wanna wear a tuxedo and be boring.”

“I think Miuccia Prada is such a celebration of the unconventional and so it felt like, appropriate, somehow. They are two women [Schiaparelli and Prada] who I have always loved the work of; I mean Schiaparelli is one of my all-time heroes and Miuccia Prada continues to be a hero of mine. I am looking forward to seeing the exhibition.”

Though his chosen look at the time was seemingly bizarre, the full weight of his influence was apparent when the dress quickly sold out.

The 2019 Met Gala red carpet will air in Australia on Foxtel’s E! Channel on Tuesday May 7 AEST. It will also be streamed via E! News and on US Vogue’s Facebook page. Stay tuned for ongoing coverage come the big day.