On Wednesday, President Joe Biden made his first address to a joint session of Congress, starting with, “Madame Vice President and Madame Speaker.” There to witness the historic event was Dr. Jill Biden, who of course, dressed for the occasion in a custom-made, floral dress by New York designer Gabriela Hearst. According to the brand, the navy dress featured embroidered flowers from every U.S. state and territory.
Following the session, which was held on the eve of President Biden’s 100th day in office, Hearst posted photos of Dr. Biden on her Instagram. In the caption, she explained that the dress was originally a sample, used to perfect the fit of the one Dr. Biden wore on the evening of Inauguration Day. (For the actual Inauguration ceremony, she wore a blue, Swarovski crystal-covered dress and coat by Markarian.) Rather than allow the darker version of the dress to go to waste, the First Lady requested to salvage it for another occasion. “Double repurposed,” wrote Hearst. “New is not always better.”
Her white Inauguration night dress featured a silk-organza neck and sleeves that were similarly covered in embroidered flowers from every U.S. state and territory. At the time, the designer posted on Instagram, explaining the meaning behind the floral arrangement: “The message of Unity is the main inspiration for the creation of the ensemble.” Inside her coat, a quote from Benjamin Franklin was stitched by hand that read: “Tell me and I forget. Teach me and I remember. Involve me and I learn.”
Vice President Kamala Harris and Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi also wore memorable looks. For the occasion, Vice President Harris wore a Prabal Gurung suit in a petal pink color, with an ivory-colored silk camisole underneath. Opting for her signature look, she wore a pearl necklace with the ensemble — this time selecting a collar-like style made of yellow gold. Speaker Pelosi followed Biden’s lead, wearing a floral blue blazer with a matching face mask and trousers.