Gotham/Getty Images; Kevin Winter/MTV VMAs 2020/Getty Images Lizzo and Lady Gaga's dresses that will be on show
The fashion of pop royalty is being celebrated by real-life royals!
Dresses worn by Lizzo and Lady Gaga are set to appear at an upcoming exhibit at the former home of Princess Diana. Kensington Palace, which is also the London base for Prince William and Kate Middleton, will host the story of how rock and red carpet fashion has been influenced by the royals of the Georgian era of the 18th century.
Called Crown to Couture, it promises to reveal "fascinating parallels between the world of the red carpet and the world of the Royal Court."
Around 200 pieces will be on display across the palace's State Apartments and exhibition spaces, taking "visitors on a journey, from the preparation and styling required for an attendance at one of the hottest tickets in town and the 'fashion rules' that must be followed, to the grand arrivals at both the court and the red carpet," Historic Royal Palaces said on Wednesday.
Capturing the excitement of the modern red carpets and shows, the curators have called upon the talents of Joseph Bennett — designer of catwalk shows for Alexander McQueen, Kate's wedding gown designer — to help plan the exhibit. They even promise a flavor of notorious after-parties!
Central to the exhibition are the dresses worn by the pop icons. One is the plain black corset gown and billowing jacket with intricate gold detailing Thom Browne dress worn by Lizzo to the 2022 Met Gala.
Kevin Winter/MTV VMAs 2020/Getty Images
It will be joined by, among many others, the luminous green, futuristic dress by Christopher John Rogers that singer and actress Lady Gaga wore to the 2020 MTV Awards. The curators chose the piece because it is not dissimilar to the size and scale of dresses that would have been worn in the palace centuries earlier. Like many of the outfits that are planned, it was designed to be noticed, they say.
Although famous for its more recent residences like Princess Diana, Prince William Prince Harry and Princess Margaret, Kensington Palace was renowned in the 18th century for "near-daily lavish events in the Georgian era."
Curator at Historic Royal Palaces Claudia Acott Williams said in a statement that they are "thrilled to be collaborating with a wide variety of well-known fashion houses and emerging designers to showcase some of the most iconic red carpet looks of recent years and celebrate the wonderful diversity and creativity we see there today."
Historic Royal Palaces,Ian Serfontein The Rockingham mantua that will be on show
"By bringing these familiar looks into the Palace and placing them in conversation with spectacular 18th-century court dress, we hope to provide a new perspective on these historic spaces and the seemingly distant customs of the Georgian Court, and allow visitors to experience the Palace as it was meant to be experienced: filled to the brim with the most fashionable and influential names of the day," she added.
Also on show will be examples of some of Historic Royal Palace's own collection — the Royal Ceremonial Dress Collection — which is cared for by a team of experts at Hampton Court Palace. A highlight is the Rockingham Mantua, brocaded in silver thread and silver lace trim and believed to have been worn by the wife of British Prime Minister, the 2nd Marquess of Rockingham, in the 1760s.
Fashion Museum Bath
Other historic items set to be unveiled include the world-famous Silver Tissue Gown, on loan from the Fashion Museum Bath, which will form the opening to the exhibition.
A rare example of fashion worn during the opulent era of Charles II is a handmade fine silk gown perfectly that is believed to have been worn to the royal court by a young Lady Theophila Harris, who went on to become the wife of MP Sir Arthur Harris of Hayne.
✨ Kensington Palace's largest ever exhibition ✨ From Lizzo to Lady Gaga, Georgian gowns to garter robes. Join us next Spring for Crown to Couture at Kensington Palace. 👑
Find out more ➡️ https://t.co/fskh8ozX59
📍 Kensington Palace pic.twitter.com/08zHEgOwmV
— Historic Royal Palaces (@HRP_palaces) November 23, 2022
The Crown to Couture exhibition — which comes as part of palace admission — opens to the public on April 5, 2023.