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Lady Gaga, JLo offer rare Washington fashion moment

21 January 2021, MVT 13:43
US singer Lady Gaga (C) arrives to perform the National Anthem as President-elect Joe Biden (L) and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris (R) watch during the 59th Presidential Inauguration on January 20, 2021, at the US Capitol in Washington, DC. (Photo by Andrew Harnik / POOL / AFP)
21 January 2021, MVT 13:43

Joe Biden's inauguration offered the American capital city a rare occasion for glamour, with Lady Gaga leading the way in a billowing ball gown and enormous dove brooch as she belted out a classic rendition of the US national anthem.

The long-sleeved gown featured a fitted navy drop-waist bodice with a demure mock neck collar, a look completed with a voluminous scarlet skirt that ensured she kept her Covid-friendly distance.

"My intention is to acknowledge our past, be healing for our present, and passionate for a future where we work together lovingly. I will sing to the hearts of all people who live on this land," Gaga tweeted ahead of her performance.

Daniel Roseberry, the Schiaparelli designer behind the dress, said in a statement to The New York Times that "as an American living in Paris, this ensemble is a love letter to the country I miss so dearly and to a performer whose artistry I have so long admired."

US singer Jennifer Lopez arrives to sing during the 59th Presidential Inauguration on January 20, 2021, at the US Capitol in Washington, DC. (Photo by Patrick Semansky / POOL / AFP)

Following Gaga's performance of "The Star-Spangled Banner," Jennifer Lopez took the stage wearing Chanel, performing Woody Guthrie's classic "This Land Is Your Land", a tune with a socialist bent that the folk legend is said to have written in response to the more nationalistic "God Bless America."

Bronx-raised with Puerto Rican roots, Lopez finished with "America The Beautiful," adding in a line from the national Pledge of Allegiance in Spanish: "Con libertad y justicia para todos" ("With liberty and justice for all").

Sporting a white pantsuit ensemble with a ruffle collar, Lopez also shouted "Let's get loud!" during her performance, a nod to her turn-of-the-millennium signature hit, delighting social media.

Garth Brooks, in a black jacket and cowboy hat with baggy blue jeans, sang "Amazing Grace."

National youth poet laureate Amanda Gorman arrives at the inauguration of US President-elect Joe Biden on the West Front of the US Capitol on January 20, 2021 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Win McNamee / POOL / AFP)

And the youngest inaugural poet ever, Amanda Gorman, wore a sleek canary yellow coat, gold hoop earrings and a bright red headband to recite her moving work "The Hill We Climb."

Biden in Ralph, Bernie goes practical chic

Prior to the swearing-in performances celebrating the 46th president, the Capitol was a parade of jewel tones as VIPs arrived in their winter finest for the inauguration.

Kamala Harris, the boundary-breaking new vice president, along with new first lady Jill Biden, both wore American designers, as did Biden and the second gentleman Doug Emhoff.

US Vice President Kamala Harris (C) greets the Eineshower Executive Office staff, flanked by US Second Gentleman Doug Emhoff (R) and family as they walk up Pennsylvania Avenue to enter the White House in Washington, DC, after Joe Biden and Harris were sworn in at the US Capitol on January 20, 2021. (Photo by Nicholas Kamm / AFP)

President Biden and Emhoff both went classic in America's legacy designer Ralph Lauren, with Biden in a lavender tie.

Lauren's designs are favorites of Washington politicians. He also dressed Melania Trump during her husband's 2017 inauguration, with the former first lady wearing a sky blue dress coat ensemble.

Biden's wife Jill arrived in a look from the small house Markarian, whose young designer Alexandra O'Neill crafted an ocean blue tweed dress with a hint of shimmer and a matching coat that featured dark blue lapels, with a coordinating mask and gloves.

The New York designer has dressed a number of stars, including Laura Dern and Lizzo, despite establishing her fashion house just four years ago.

"It is an incredible honor to dress Dr. Biden today," O'Neill said to AFP. "I am so humbled to be even a small part of American history."

US President Joe Biden and First Lady Jill Biden wave as they arrive at the White House in Washington, DC, on January 20, 2021. (Photo by Alex Brandon / POOL / AFP)

Harris selected two up-and-coming Black designers, wearing a bright purple midi dress and matching coat by Christopher John Rogers, walking in heels by Sergio Hudson.

The 2020 CFDA American Emerging Designer of the Year, Rogers is a rising American star partial to color-drenched looks with artful tailoring.

During her husband's twin terms, former first lady Michelle Obama also routinely spotlighted American designers, often young and from diverse backgrounds.

And on Wednesday Obama also highlighted Hudson's work, stunning in a seventies-esque gold-belted, wide-legged turtleneck pantsuit and matching coat.

The most recent former first lady Melania Trump, in contrast, generally favoured European couturiers, in particular Italian designers including Dolce & Gabbana, Gucci and Prada.

US President Joe Biden and US First Lady Jill Biden pose with their family in front of the statue of Abraham Lincoln at the "Celebrating America" event at the Lincoln Memorial after his inauguration as the 46th President of the United States in Washington, DC, January 20, 2021. (Photo by JOSHUA ROBERTS / POOL / AFP)

Not everyone leaned into the glitz, however: one senator went viral by dressing as if the inauguration were but one stop on his long to-do list.

Bernie Sanders, the democratic socialist former presidential candidate and incoming Senate budget committee chairman, wore his meme-famous parka made by Burton, the snowboarding company based in the Vermont capital of Burlington.

Former presidential candidate, Senator Bernie Sanders (D-Vermont) sits in the bleachers on Capitol Hill before Joe Biden is sworn in as the 46th US President on January 20, 2021, at the US Capitol in Washington, DC. (Photo by Brendan SMIALOWSKI / AFP)

He also charmed the internet with his practical oversized knit mittens, a gift from a Vermont teacher who said they are made from repurposed wool sweaters and lined with fleece manufactured from recycled plastic bottles.

"Vermont jacket, Vermont gloves, Vermont common sense!" his wife Jane O'Meara Sanders tweeted.

Washington, United States | AFP

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