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1-min read

Jacqueline Kennedy to Melania Trump: What First Ladies Wore For Inaugural Events

Fashion is the legacy every First Lady leaves behind.


Updated:January 23, 2017, 3:38 PM IST
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Jacqueline Kennedy to Melania Trump: What First Ladies Wore For Inaugural Events
Image Courtesy: Reuters

Clothing can give a sense of a person’s physical presence. It helps make even the most distant historical figure feel closer. Clothing and accessories illustrate the personal style of a first lady or the official style of a presidential administration. And they can represent the events to which they were worn—from inaugural balls, state dinners, and public appearances to everyday life in the White House. The ladies of the First Family never lacked in the fashion department. So, here's an ode to the 50 years of inaugural fashion.


John F. Kennedy and Jacqueline Kennedy arrive at the National Guard Armory for the inaugural ball in, January 1961. Ethel Frankau of Bergdorf Custom Salon designed the first lady's sleeveless gown and matching cape.

Lady Bird Johnson in her inaugural gown designed by John Moore

Lady Bird Johnson in her inaugural gown designed by John Moore, January 1965. She ordered the dress through Neiman Marcus.

Jimmy and Rosalynn Carter dancing at the inaugural ball

Jimmy and Rosalynn Carter dance at the inaugural ball, January 1977. Rosalynn Carter's gold-trimmed dress was the same she wore to her husband's gubernatorial inauguration six years earlier, designed by Mary Matisse.

Nancy Reagan

Ronald and Nancy Reagan pose in the White House red room before attending their inaugural balls in 1981 (L) and 1985. Nancy Reagan wore John Galanos-designed gowns for both occasions.

Laura Bush

First lady Laura Bush waves as she arrives on stage with President George W. Bush at theTexas Ball, January 2001. Laura chose a gown by Texas designer Michael Faircloth, and adorned the outfit with a pearl necklace

Hillary Clinton

President Clinton takes the oath of office as daughter Chelsea Clinton and first lady Hillary Rodham Clinton look on, January 1997.

Michelle Obama

President Barack Obama walks with his wife Michelle after he was sworn in as the 44th President, January 2009. Michelle is wearing a custom-made ensemble by Cuban-born American designer Isabel Toledo.

Arriving at the 58th presidential pre-inauguration candlelight dinner, first lady Melania Trump stepped out on the stage wearing a stunning sparkling-gold gown created exclusively for her from Lebanese-born New York-based designer Reem Acra.

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| Edited by: Shifa Khan
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