Stars of Hollywood, fashion converge at Met gala 

Stars of Hollywood and the fashion world were converging on the Metropolitan Museum of Art Monday evening for the annual Costume Institute gala, the biggest night on the New York fashion calendar.

This year, the glamour quotient was raised a notch: Men were asked to dress in white tie — full evening dress, in other words — a fancier proposition than black tie.

The request was in keeping with the theme of this year's Costume Institute exhibit, which opens to the public on Thursday: "Charles James: Beyond Fashion." James, who died in 1978, was a mid-20th century designer who specialized in spectacular, sculptured gowns made with intricate draping techniques. It's the inaugural exhibit of the new, $40 million Anna Wintour Costume Center, named for the Vogue editor.

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