There’s no better way to celebrate the Met’s 150th year than with one of their newly released collectibles.
An art enthusiast’s dream, the host to the most talked-about gala, and the backdrop to many-a Gossip Girl revelation, the Metropolitan Museum of Art is an integral part of New York City and its culture. When a museum is able to consistently attract locals and tourists alike, you know something has been done right, and the Met has been doing that something right for 150 years.
While the art museum likely never anticipated celebrating its 150th anniversary with only 25% capacity, its recent reopening is a win for both the museum itself—which was closed for six months—and the New York City residents who missed it.
However, for those unable to visit the museum, there are other ways to not only celebrate the museum’s historic anniversary but to show support (financially, of course). Teaming up with popular designers and brands, the Met unveiled their 150th Anniversary Edit, celebrating not just the museum and the art within, but the visionaries and voices it inspired. The store’s newest additions contain everything from totes to tops to tennis shoes, and will surely sell through items quickly (and for good reason). To help you get ahead of the crowd, we’ve rounded up the collection’s best products.
Estée Lauder Collectible Powder Compact
This popular New York-based makeup company teamed with the Met to release a new collection of their beloved products. A line to replace your current routine—with eye shadow, lipstick, and powder—these collectors’ items will do more than just sit at the bottom of your purse (with a design like that you’ll want to display them). While each unique product serves a different purpose (why not get them all?), it’s the Collectible Powder Compact that drew us in.
Inspired by Fernand Léger’s The Village, this compact, powder, and applicator are all stunning and practical. Small enough to stick in your purse and with a design so pretty you’ll hold onto it for life, this collectible compact is both timeless and practical.
Making the Met, 1870-2020
This book does a deep dive into the Met and how it came to be the phenomenon and cultural landmark it is today. The book is informative, giving insight into the inner workings of the museum as well as the art it holds. It’s, quite frankly, the perfect coffee table book.
Making the Met Tote
Swap out your weathered New Yorker tote for this new canvas bag. The front of the special edition Met tote showcases some of the Met’s most iconic pieces, while the back commemorates the museum’s 150th anniversary. And while we always love a good tote, perhaps the best part is that this collectible is only $35. We’re all about supporting our favorite institute on a budget!.
Kidrobot: Van Gogh Irises Dunny
Kidrobot is a designer that creates toys that appear more like art pieces—a perfect fit for a Met collaboration. These limited edition Kidrobots draw inspiration from the museum’s most notable paintings. While their Van Gogh Irises Dunny version might be on the pricier side due to its size—$149 (versus some of the smaller ones, like this Monrian-inspired figure, come in at only $23)—we can’t look away from the reimagining of the famous painting. Stunning and moderately-priced, this collector’s item is perfect for your desk or your kid (it is a toy after all) who has a keen interest in the finer things.
Medieval Knights Kid’s Tee
The Met is a museum that’s difficult for even its youngest guests to call a bore. With pieces dating back 5,000 years and exhibits ranging from an Egyptian temple to the Costume Institute, there is something for everyone here regardless of age or interest. Catering to its younger crowd, the Met teamed up with J.Crew to create a shirt perfect for your little art historian. The shirt reimagines modern New York with some of the medieval pieces present in the museum, making for a really cute tee. Hop on it, though—some sizes are already sold out and, this is one you (and your kid) won’t want to miss.
Catbird: Portraiture Pearl Single Earring
A popular New York City designer of fine jewelry, Catbird teamed up with the Met to create a line of jewelry inspired by some of the museum’s finest works, all by women. This pearl earring—made with a keshi pearl, recycled white diamond, and 14K gold— pays homage to Kirtlington Park, Oxfordshire: View of the Dining Room. The piece is simple but elegant and has quality jewels you’ll want to pass down to your children and/or grandchildren. Celebrate the work of Susan Alice Dashwood and be your own Girl with a Pearl Earring.
The Met 150 Paint Tube Pen
If you’re looking to grab a collector’s item while not overdrawing your account, this item is for you. At just $6, this small piece is perfect for the Met’s regulars who might not be able to afford more than their entry fee. A pen that looks like a paint tube which honor’s the 150th anniversary, this item is simple and small, but still incredibly unique and about as practical as you can get.
Baggu Bag Set
Baggu bags have taken the world—particularly NYC, which has a ban on plastic bags—by storm. These compact but sturdy reusable bags, which come in a variety of sizes and designs, have now expanded to include some Met favorites. Inspired by pieces from China, France, and Iran, this set of three bags perfectly encompasses the worldliness of the Met’s collection.
"My Very Old Friends" Scarf
While we fawn over just about any article of clothing that could be easily likened to art, this piece has a unique backstory that has us quickly adding to cart. The design seen on the scarf was done by our new favorite artist, six-year-old Theodora Maleta. Inspired by the Greek and Roman galleries, she created a design both beautiful and imaginative in the character she is able to give to these stone pieces. Whether you wear it as a scarf or add it to your wall as a tapestry, this is a piece of art you can’t find anywhere else.
Bulova The Met 150 Watch
The Bulova brand has its roots in New York City, so it’s only appropriate that they team up with New York’s most famous institution to celebrate their historic year. Inspired by the Met logo, Bulova created a watch that is sleek, with a black face and band, while unique with the red touches and Met logo just above six. It’s a watch for the businessmen who consider the Met their escape, the watch collectors always thinking of the resale value, or just the art historian who can never seem to remember the time.