Dublin designer dresses First Lady at historic inauguration

by Sylvia Pownall

The designer who hand-stitched Jill Biden’s dress, coat and facemask for the US presidential inauguration says she has been “mindblown” by the reaction.

Dr Biden’s stunning outfit which won her nods of approval showed she’s a first lady of style – and it was embroidered by Laura Weber from Rathfarnham.

Laura, of US-based firm LWPearl, said the couture was a “labour of love that took hours, days and weeks of work”.

She revealed that after 18 months in business demand for her work has “cascaded” since Mrs Biden wore the outfit for the evening celebrations last week.

The National College of Art and Design graduate got involved in the project through Gabriela Hearst who designed the dress and coat worn by Dr Biden.

She told how she and her team began working on the outfit on 9 December and handed it over on the Monday before inauguration day.

She revealed: “We developed each flower for each US State and Territory. We chose every bead, every stitch, every stitch direction, every colour and we prototyped all of those and when they were approved we lay it out.

“It was a personal message for Dr Biden…a Benjamin Franklin quote about her teaching.”

The intricate detailing meant all the flowers were specifically placed with the Delaware flower for her native State on the left, close to her heart, and the same bloom on the mask.

After all the excitement Laura returned to her New York studio this week where she was busy putting the finishing touches to a face mask she hopes to have on the market by the end of the month.

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