By Ase Anderson in London
Arguably the most glamorous event on the New York social calendar, the Met Ball is when the stars pull out all the stops, and this year was no exception.
Formally known as the Costume Institute Gala, The Met Ball is an annual fundraising gala in aid of the Metropolitan Museum of Art's Costume Institute. Organised and hosted by US Vogue editor Anna Wintour, the exclusive event is now in its 44th year and was held for the first time in the new Anna Wintour Costume Centre.
This year's theme, 'White tie and decorations', was a tribute to Charles James, a British-born fashion designer who became known as 'America's First Couturier'. Fashion-wise it was a slightly more toned-down affair than last year's punk extravaganza, although there were still plenty of front-page worthy outfits on display. And the stunning designer gowns, ranging from daring to demure, were offset by some of the most spectacular jewellery around as the A-list attendees shimmied down the red carpet.
Harry Winston, often dubbed 'the King of Diamonds', dressed several of the night's glitterati, including Katie Holmes, who dazzled in more than $2 million worth of yellow diamonds. Pop princess Kylie Minogue looked resplendent in Daytime Diamond Drop earrings paired with a Princess-cut diamond bracelet, while model of the moment Karolina Kurkova opted for a 55-carat Guipure diamond necklace and Queen Diamond ring, together worth more than $1 million.
Van Cleef & Arpels was also well represented on the red carpet. Standing out in a sea of pastel and nude-coloured dresses, Emmy Rossum teamed an eye-catching floral Carolina Herrera gown with the jeweller's "Oiseaux Flamboyant" earrings from the Birds of Paradise collection featuring red spinels, pink sapphires and diamonds.
Karen Elson may have worn one of the aforementioned nude dresses - by Zac Posen - but her flaming red hair and no less than five Van Cleef & Arpels jewels, including an Estate diamond necklace and Zip Antique earrings, ensured that she did not blend into the crowd.
Dita Von Teese channelled a vintage vibe in a nude fishtail Zac Posen dress accessorised with a Van Cleef & Arpels "Estate" necklace, dating back to 1946 and decorated with diamonds, topaz and enamel. Alongside her vintage necklace she wore "Three Leaves" Estate diamond earrings and an "Oiseaux de Paradis" Between the Finger ring with diamonds and sapphires.
Kirsten Dunst stood out in a Star Wars-inspired Rodarte dress complete with a Death Star print and Van Cleef & Arpels jewels. She offset the unusual gown with diamond and sapphire earrings, a diamond hair ornament, a sapphire and diamond ring and a Noeud diamond bracelet from the French jeweller's Couture collection.
Oscar winner Marion Cotillard channelled the trend for just one earring - a platinum and diamond cluster from Chopard's platinum collection. As the face of Dior, Marion chose an embroidered dark blue dress from the designer's haute couture collection, which she also teamed with a 40-carat platinum and diamond line bracelet by Chopard.
Model Kendall Jenner, whose half-sister Kim Kardashian made her red carpet entrance beside soon-to-be-husband Kanye West in huge Lorraine Schwartz diamond earrings, eschewed an outrageously expensive couture frock in favour of a pretty pink satin dress by TopShop. She bust the budget with her choice of jewels, however, accessorising her high-street dress with a high-jewellery necklace by Chopard sparkling with 82 carats of diamonds.
Flying the ethical flag was Livia Firth's husband, the British actor Colin Firth, who debuted Chopard's new L.U.C. Tourbillon GQ Fairmined watch - the world's first watch made of Fairmined gold - on the red carpet. The latest addition to Chopard's Green Carpet Collection, launched in 2013 in partnership with Eco-Age, for which Livia Firth is creative director, the watch is part of the Swiss jeweller's ongoing commitment to sustainable and ethical luxury.
Cartier was the choice of a handful of high-profile guests, including Lupita Nyong'o, Stella McCartney and Cara Delevigne. While all three are known for their sense of style, Lupita stole the show in a Prada dress that made the headlines but divided the critics. There was no such posturing over her jewels, however. Her vintage diamond Cartier headpiece was the perfect accompaniment to her flamboyant flapper look.
Actress Amy Adams was a vision of glamour in David Webb jewellery and a silver Oscar de la Renta dress. She chose diamond and crystal earrings and a ring, while model Fei Fei Sun, also accessorised in David Webb, wore a striking diamond and moonstone ring over her white satin gloves as well as a pair of diamond and pearl earrings.
And while the majority of celebrity wrists were adorned with bracelets, actress Diane Kruger kept her eye on the time in a vintage Jaeger-LeCoultre 'Secret' jewellery watch, with a diamond flower pendant that opens to reveal a delicate watch dial.
Rihanna turns white into a not-so-innocent colour in a midriff-baring Stella McCartney two-piece teamed with Dionea Orcini and Cartier rings and a Jacob & Co. diamond collar.
A closer look at the vintage Cartier diamond headpiece dating from 1906 worn by Lupita Nyong'o to the Met Ball 2014, which she customised with a green ribbon.
Lupita Nyong'o wore the most flamboyant outfit of the night courtesy of Prada and didn't hold back on her jewels either. She chose a vintage 1906 diamond headpiece, two vintage diamond bracelets, a parrot ring, diamond earrings and an emerald and diamond bracelet, all by Cartier.
Elizabeth Olsen looked flawless in classic Cartier diamond cluster earrings.
American actress Kate Mara looked glamorous in green and gold, paired with a Cartier Tradition ring in yellow gold and diamond Cartier earrings.
Karen Elson wore an understated nude dress by Zac Posen but her flaming red hair and no less than five Van Cleef & Arpels jewels, including an Estate diamond necklace and Zip Antique earrings, ensured she stood out. Image by: Dimitrios Kambouris of Getty Images.
Flying the ethical flag was Livia Firth's husband, the British actor Colin Firth, who debuted Chopard's new L.U.C. Tourbillon GQ Fairmined watch - the world's first watch made of Fairmined gold - on the red carpet.
Kendall Jenner opted for a glamorous Chopard collar necklace featuring 82 carats of diamonds to go with her high-street TopShop dress.
Worn by Colin Firth to the 2014 Met Ball, Chopard's L.U.C Tourbillon QF Fairmined is the only watch in the world that can guarantee the gold used in its making was mined in a sustainable manner.
Oscar winner Marion Cotillard channelled the trend for just one earring - a platinum and diamond cluster from Chopard's platinum collection.
While the majority of celebrity wrists were adorned with bracelets, actress Diane Kruger kept her eye on the time at the Met Ball 2014 in a vintage Jaeger-LeCoultre 'Secret' jewellery watch, with a diamond flower pendant that opens to reveal a delicate watch dial.
The vintage Jaeger-LeCoultre 'Secret' jewellery watch, with a diamond flower pendant that opens to reveal a delicate watch dial, worn by Diane Kruger to the Met Ball 2014.