NEW YORK-First Lady Michelle Obama paid glowing tribute Monday to Vogue fashion legend Anna Wintour, as she cut the ribbon on New York’s $40 million renovated costume center named in her honor. Wearing a stunning, green floral dress by the Indian-born Naeem Khan, Obama inaugurated the Anna Wintour Costume Center at a celebrity-studded ceremony at the Metropolitan Museum of Art.

‘The truth is I’m here today because of Anna. I’m here because I have such respect and admiration for this woman, who I am proud to call my friend,’ she said. The first lady, beloved by the American fashion world for her elegance, said the center would be a source of learning and inspiration for young people interested in the fashion industry. Hollywood actress Sarah Jessica Parker joined designers Diane von Furstenberg, Marc Jacobs, Calvin Klein, Ralph Lauren, Stella McCartney and Oscar de la Renta at the ribbon-cutting ceremony. Monday night marks the glittering Met ball, or Costume Institute Gala Benefit, hosted by Wintour. It is one of the biggest events in the society calendar for the international jet set.