Legendary costume designer Bob Mackie has shared his feelings about Kim Kardashian wearing the late Marilyn Monroe's iconic "Happy Birthday, Mr. President" dress to the 2022 Met Gala. "I thought it was a big mistake," 82-year-old Mackie told Entertainment Weekly during an interview for a new Turner Classic Movies series called Follow the Thread. "[Marilyn] was a goddess. A crazy goddess, but a goddess. She was just fabulous. Nobody photographs like that. And it was done for her. It was designed for her," he explained. "Nobody else should be seen in that dress."
According to People, Mackie drew the design of the iconic dress in 1962 for Jean Louis, who then fashioned the dress Marilyn wore to serenade President John F. Kennedy for his 45th birthday. Furthermore, TCM host Alicia Malone said the re-wear of the dress could compromise the preservation of the historical garment.
"There are all the issues with the actual preservation of the dress and things like oxygen can affect a dress," she said. "Usually, these outfits are kept very much in controlled environments and we see that with the Met. The Costume Institute is so careful about how they are handling these historic items. So, it was quite alarming that she was able to wear it. I personally wish she wore a replica instead of the real thing." However, Kim actually only wore the dress for a few minutes to walk through the red carpet before slipping into a replica for the rest of the night.
Her appearance in the dress at the Met Gala caused some more controversy when she revealed that she lost 16 pounds in three weeks to be able to fit into the dress, which she borrowed from the Ripley's Believe It or Not Museum in Orlando, Florida. The team there also gifted the Kardashian a lock of Marilyn's hair.