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TWU’s Texas First Ladies Costume Collection welcomes newest gown addition from the first Hispanic First Lady of Texas

Johnna Headley, Reporter

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Texas First Lady Cecilia Abbott’s inauguration dress displayed in TWU’s Texas First Ladies Historic Costume Collection.

On Tuesday Oct. 13, Texas First Lady Cecilia Abbott was joined by a host of people in Hubbard Hall banquet room as she formally donated her inaugural gown to TWU’s Texas First Ladies Historic Costume Collection. Decadent refreshments were available for guests to enjoy while listening to the lovely sound of a harpist’s playing.

Texas First Lady, Cecilia Abbott’s inaugural gown was designed by Austin seamstress and boutique owner Laura Gonzales. The scarlet red gown is princess cut with a fitted bodice and three-quarter length sleeves. The full skirt is pleated with a slight train and completed with pockets. The ball gown was made from peau de soie** silk and Spanish guipure lace embellished with Swarovski crystals, various ruby beads and enhanced with gold and rhinestone accents. To complete the unique look of the gown, the belt is decorated to resemble layers of leaves. Cecilia’s inaugural look was completed with a richly embroidered coat with Alenconn lace, braided trim and silk organza leaves.

Chancellor Carine Feyton began the reception by addressed Texas’s First Lady: “Thank you Mrs. Abbott for being with us today, but especially for allowing Texas Woman’s University to have your beautiful gown for our collection. I imagine that it must have been a little bittersweet to part with such a beautiful gown and something that is so personal and meaningful to you. For us, this is also a very wonderful opportunity to showcase a different aspect of the university and remind us of this legacy that dates back 75 years and was created for the benefit for all Texans.”

Cecilia Abbott wrapped up the reception with a few words of thank you: “The Texas First Ladies Historic Costume Collection is a true gem, and I am so honored that my gown will join the other gowns worn by the former Texas First Ladies as well as other notable Texas women. I want to thank you, Texas Woman’s University, for your dedication for preserving this special, special piece of history.”

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