Melania Trump donates inaugural ball gown to the Smithsonian

Melania Trump participated in a donation ceremony Friday at the Smithsonian National Museum of American History

Melania Trump participated in a donation ceremony Friday at the Smithsonian National Museum of American History

First lady Melania Trump's inaugural gown is now a part of American history - enshrined in the Smithsonian's First Ladies Collection of past inaugural frocks.

"This has truly been a wonderful journey - from the extraordinary collaboration to creating the piece, to seeing her wear it on a historic night, and now having it preserved in history forever in such an iconic exhibit - is something I will always cherish", he said.

Lisa Kathleen Graddy, curator of the Smithsonian's First Ladies Collection exhibition, said the tradition began with Helen Taft in 1912.

The 47-year-old First Lady of the United States donated the gown she wore at the inauguration to be on display at the museum.

Ms Trump introduced Herve Pierre, the French-born designer behind the vanilla silk, off-the-shoulder couture dress.

The designer of Trump's gown, Hervé Pierre, was also in attendance on Friday.

The exhibit features the collection of 26 dresses, including those worn by Jacqueline Kennedy, Laura Bush and Michelle Obama, and more than 160 other objects. "That's also my right to say yes". Trump referred to the designer as "a true artist and real professional". Pierre said the two are working on her looks for an upcoming trip to Asia.

Trump shared the story behind the gown, which was designed in just two weeks. By contrast, Hillary Clinton's 1993 inaugural gown was a purple lace and sequins number by Sarah Phillips, with long sleeves, a belt and a sheer overlay skirt. The former model said making the donation was an honor.

Melania Trump has a smaller group of aides compared to her predecessor, former First Lady Michelle ObamaMichelle LeVaughn Robinson ObamaMichelle Obama criticizes lack of diversity in politics: one side is "all white, all men" Obama interrupts Michelle's appearance with 25th anniversary tribute Michelle Obama: Young people feel what's happening now "not what they were taught" MORE, according to the news outlet's analysis of White House personnel reports. "It must be sort of a odd thing to basically come to a museum and see yourself, your dress, encased in the Smithsonian, as you become a part of history".

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