Getting Ready

Model Fei Fei Sun Is a Met Gala Veteran

But that doesn’t make the biggest night in fashion any less exciting.

By: Tara Gonzalez
Photography: Alec Kugler

This Met Gala is model Fei Fei Sun’s fourth. If you think that means she isn’t just as excited as she was for her first, you’d be wrong. Sitting on a pale pink couch in a room decked with velvet curtains at the Gramercy Park Hotel, Fei Fei excitedly tells us about her love of The Met Museum and her admiration for Rei Kawakubo. At 4 PM she still hasn’t decided between two Alberta Ferretti dresses for no other reason than that they are both perfect. Ultimately, she goes with the long black gown with sleeves that swirl off the shoulder, faultlessly in tune with the Comme des Garçons theme that favors the bold sartorial risk over the conventional and expected.

Half an hour later, we talk over while waiting for a delivery from David Yurman to arrive. Fei Fei begins to reminisce over Rihanna’s performance two years ago and her favorite room in the museum until we realize it’s already 5:30 PM. She quickly straps on her Dries Van Noten heels, grabs her silver Swarovski clutch, and rushes into the elevator and her car before flashing us another red-lipped smile. We guess it’s true what they say: style never goes out of fashion—and enthusiasm for the Met Gala never fades.


“This is my fourth time attending the Met Gala. I’m so honored to be part of this night specifically because the Met Museum is one of my favorite places in New York. Whether it’s a really hot day, its a great place to go cool off, or in the wintertime it’s a great way to spend an afternoon and meet friends for drinks on the roof!”

“I always build my outfits from the ground up. I always start with the shoes, especially for an evening event where I’m going to be standing. I start with the shoes and work my way up. Tonight I’m wearing suede ankle-strap shoes that are mine by Dries van Noten!”

“My dress tonight is by Alberta Ferretti. I admire her for being such a strong woman like Rei Kawakubo!”

“Being here in The Gramercy Hotel...and being in these rooms, you really feel the history and the grandeur of New York. It has such a nice ambience with the velvet curtains! It has such a nice serenity to it.”

“This is my third Met ball working with Maki. Maki is the best. Not only does she do my makeup, and her makeup is flawless, but she pampers me! We did an Estée Lauder mask, and afterwards she gave me a facial massage. It goes beyond just applying makeup. She really treats me and pampers me, which helps me relax before such a big event.”

“Living in New York City now for seven years, I have really enjoyed as much time in as many parks as I can, Central Park being a favorite. Running the west side highway is always fun. Gramercy Park is so mysterious because you need a key! So it’s so great to get ready with a view of the park and be a tourist in my own city.”

“Every year the Met Gala gets better and better. You never know what to expect, but I am always overwhelmed by how grand it is. I always leave learning something.”

“I love how the Met encompasses all of the entire world. They have the Africa wing and the Asia Wing. They have modern art and classic art and everything from Vincent Van Gogh to the Temple of Dendur.”

“I was thinking it would be fun to do a bang tonight.”

“Two years ago the performer at the Met was Rihanna, and she is just so amazing. I’m fascinated to see who is going to perform. Because it is such a small crowd, the performance feels so intimate.”

“For me, Rei Kawakubo is someone I’ve always looked up to in fashion history. I think it’s amazing how she took the color black and made it more than something being worn for mourning. She made it a style, which is indescribably amazing.”

“Rei’s clothes have such a unique relationship with the body. Whether it’s 2-D and standing away from the body or something that is following the curve of the body or just something that creates entirely new shapes.”

“I love Dries Van Noten, so happy that he had his anniversary show recently in Paris. Dries van Noten is like Rei Kawakubo, he also marches to the beat of his own drum, and he is independent.”

“Just as I always expect a lot out of the Met Gala and I am always impressed...I feel the same about Rei Kawakubo and her collections. You never know what to expect, but you always leave seeing the world in a whole new way.”

“It is such an amazing event, just like the Temple of Dendur in the Met that is so historic. It feels really modern and really ancient all at the same time.”

Makeup: Maki RyokeHair: Dana Boyer