NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — President-elect Donald Trump will have to share the spotlight soon when all eyes are bound to be on his wife, Melania, during the inaugural ball, especially her gown.
The dress will play an important role in the first lady’s legacy, CBS2’s Weijia Jiang reported.
Melania Trump has strutted on runways and graced magazine covers as a former model, but her latest fashion challenge may be the most daunting yet — choosing an inaugural ball gown, Jiang reported.
“No matter what she wears after that this is the dress that is always remembered,” Lisa Kathleen Graddy, the curator of the first ladies exhibit at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History.
“This is a woman who represents us, we feel a certain kinship,” Graddy said. “We want to know that she’s appropriate.”
First ladies often showcase American designers.
Michelle Obama wore a gown by Jason Wu to her first inaugural ball. Wu went on to create several of her signature looks.
Designer Sophie Theallet also dressed Mrs. Obama, but she has vowed not to work with Mrs. Trump because of her husband’s rhetoric. Tom Ford has also said he won’t dress Mrs. Trump.
Others welcome the opportunity, like Carolina Herrara, Diane von Furstenberg, and Tommy Hilfiger.
Parsons School of Design professor Hazel Clark says the inauguration is a fresh beginning for the nation and she predicts Mrs. Trump’s dress will reflect that, while staying true to herself.
“Melania has a very distinct personal style, which is quite classic, quite elegant, not really what would be called fashion forward,” Clark said. “I think she is also very confident in the way she looks.”
And her gown will reveal the style she’ll bring to the White House, Jiang reported.