The Smithsonian Institution Requests Aretha Franklin's Inaugural Hat

01/30/2009 at 04:09 PM ET

Jason Reed/Reuters/Landov

Michelle Obama’s now-famous Jason Wu gown isn’t the only piece of Inaugural fashion that is headed for the Smithsonian. The museum is also requesting the now-iconic hat that Aretha Franklin wore while singing at the swearing-in. Aretha, however, is still undecided about parting with her Luke Song-designed hat. “I am considering it. It would be hard to part with my chapeau since it was such a crowning moment in history,” says the Queen of Soul. “I would like to smile every time I look back at it and remember what a great moment it was in American and African-American history. Ten cheers for President Obama.” Aretha’s hat has already inspired a line of toppers, recreating her custom version in different colors and bow size. If Franklin decides to donate the hat to the museum, it will become part of an exhibit of President Obama’s Inaugural display along with Michelle’s gown. Tell us: Would you like to see Aretha’s hat in the Smithsonian?

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pandalover on

Yes. I would love to see it at the Smithsonian. But let Aretha keep it as long as she likes. I’m sure there are other items she could donate since she’s an iconic singer and a representative of our pop culture. Maybe she could donate it when she passes…?

KEISHA on

PLEASE TELL ME WHERE TO FIND JESSICA SIMPSON’S BLACK SKI JACKET AND STILLETTO BOOTS SHE WORE WHEN SHE ARRIVED THURSDAY IN VIRGINIA!

Boom on

WHY the heck do they want that hat? That hat is the most horrible thing I’ve ever seen! Tacky, tacky, tacky!

Norma on

The second I saw her standing there I was like “You GO Girl!” It was spectacular … for her. I could probably never pull it off, but she definitely did. I’d say, let her enjoy it for awhile, then donate it for everyone to enjoy later. It’s like even she said, it represents a moment in history. But, it’s her decision ultimately and she deserves it, she’s earned it.

Lisa on

The hat MUST be in the Smithsonian. It’s a national treasure :) (I’m only half joking, too)

erintippin on

Why should it be in the Smithsonian? It’s not like SHE was sworn in as president.

dc on

Keep the hat Aretha until you are ready to give it up..Hopefully you’ll have a few more opportunities to enjoy it..I personally love it.

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BamaGrl61 on

Aretha is the only woman who can pull off wearing that hat. She’s awesome. It would be nice to have the hat at the Smithsonian, but if I were her, I would keep it and pass it down to daughters and grands.

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