Stars including Dame Anna Wintour, Keke Palmer and Timothee Chalamet were among the early arrivals at the Met Gala.

A-listers descended on New York for the return of fashion’s biggest night after last year’s event was cancelled due to the pandemic.

The Met Gala has been shifted from its usual date of the first Monday in May, with an unfamiliar September slot.

The exhibition is called In America: A Lexicon of Fashion and will explore US fashion.

Palmer, the 28-year-old star of Hustlers, hosted a livestream from the carpet for Vogue magazine and was among the early arrivals.

She wore a black, floor-length Sergio Hudson gown complete with a glittering finish.

2021 MET Museum Costume Institute Benefit Gala
Keke Palmer was among the early arrivals at the Met Gala (Evan Agostini/Invision/AP)

Comedian Ilana Glazer wore a feathered gown on the carpet while Hollywood star Chalamet, one of the evening’s hosts, looked striking in a white two-piece.

Palmer interviewed Vogue chief Dame Anna, who oversees the event.

Dame Anna wore a floral Oscar de la Renta dress and said it was a tribute to the late designer.

She told Palmer this year’s exhibition represents a new US, and “a whole patchwork of America, so it’s very diverse, it’s very inclusive, very sustainable and I think it symbolises that America is made up of so many different cultures”.

2021 MET Museum Costume Institute Benefit Gala
Anna Wintour oversees the Met Gala and wore an Oscar de la Renta gown (Evan Agostini/Invision/AP)

Dame Anna was also full of praise for many of the young designers at this year’s Gala.

She said: “They’re so creative, they’re so fearless and they’re so much of their community.

“They’re all friends, they know each other, they spend time together and I think it’s a very hopeful sign for the future of American fashion.”

And of the decision to bring the Met Gala to September, Dame Anna said she wanted to send the message that “New York is back” following the pandemic.

The Met Gala, which raises money for the Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Costume Institute, has been split into two this time around.

Part two – intended as a larger event after the more stripped-back September running – is scheduled for May 2 2022.