WASHINGTON — The Smithsonian's "First Ladies Collection" at the National Museum of American History will soon be growing with the presentation of first lady Jill Biden's 2021 inaugural outfits.
The museum announced Monday that both of Dr. Biden's outfits worn on Jan. 20 during her husband's presidential inauguration would be added to their collection. The first lady and the designers of both dresses/matching coats will attend a ceremony at the museum Wednesday.
The "First Ladies Collection," which opened in 1914 in the Smithsonian’s Arts and Industries Building, includes more than 1,000 objects documenting the lives of every first lady in U.S. history, ranging from wardrobe items to china collections. The evening gowns have become a staple of the collection, with every first lady since Helen Taft being asked to donate a dress to represent her in the collection. Currently, 27 gowns are on display, from first ladies including Frances Cleveland, Jackie Kennedy, Michelle Obama and Melania Trump.
Here's what will be added to the collection from Dr. Biden:
Presidential swearing-in ceremony outfit
- Ocean blue wool tapered tweed dress, hand embellished with pearls and crystals in a delicate floral pattern
- Matching overcoat accented by a dark blue velvet collar and cuffs
- Both designed by Alexandra O’Neill (founder/ designer of Markarian)
Evening Attire (no inaugural ball due to COVID)
- Ivory silk wool cady dress
- Matching ivory double-breasted cashmere coat bot
- Both designed by Gabriela Hearst (founder/creative director of Gabriela Hearst)
Dr. Biden’s matching face mask for each dress will also be on display, documenting the historic nature of pandemic precautions.
The museum will be closed Wednesday for the event, but will reopen to the public for its normal hours Thursday, from 10 a.m. to 5;30 p.m.
Dr. Jill Biden's 2021 inaugural ensembles
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