The Met Gala red carpet might have been rolled away for another year, but the pictures are still being circulated and memes spawned on social media. One model in particular is feeling reflective, because she climbed the stairs of the museum as the representative of a designer, rather than just a date. Showcasing the work of Burberry creative director Riccardo Tisci, Irina Shayk channeled her heritage into what she told Vogue was a special strand of “Russian camp”.
“I have known Riccardo for years,” Shayk shared in a post-ball debrief. “He is a dear friend and such a special part of my life. To be one of the first people to wear his designs to the Met is such an honour.” The midnight-blue velvet gown with a deep V-neck, exaggerated shoulders and sleeves extending into gloves was a collaborative process that Shayk calls simply “a dream”.
“Riccardo and I discussed the glamour as much as the dress – it’s really about the complete look,” said Shayk. “The dress has such dramatic elements, so we really wanted to balance that with minimal, chic make-up and hair.”
Even the most minimal red-carpet beauty requires a glam squad, however, and Shayk always works with the same team – hair stylists Jacob Rozenberg and Harry Josh (who also do Gisele BŁndchen’s hair) and make-up artist Tatyana Makarova, who naturally used Burberry beauty products. “Things are always streamlined but fun when we work together,” she says. “Good food and good music is a must.”
Shayk’s choice of gala fuel? A plate of pasta – specifically, a double-whammy of tomato-based fusilli and tagliatelle served in a white sauce. Photographer Rowan Papier was on hand to capture the model tucking into her dinner for a set of candid photographs shared exclusively with Vogue. Dessert came courtesy of a Snickers bar, with a limited-edition “Shady” wrapper for added pictorial impact.
The model and designer might have teamed up numerous times – Shayk is a regular in Tisci’s campaign line-ups – but creating a costume together was a different kind of process. “Camp is everything,“ she smiled, referring to the theme and dress code. “Our look is elegant but has an edge.”