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For PEOPLE's 2021 Beautiful Issue, the former First Daughter re-wears the "rock star" coat she first wore to her dad George W. Bush's 2005 presidential inauguration

By Kaitlyn Frey and Reporting By Julie Jordan
March 31, 2021 09:14 AM
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Jenna Bush Hager admits she's notorious for throwing out everything. "That's just the way I am," the Today with Hoda & Jenna cohost tells PEOPLE. But there's one sentimental piece that she's held on to for almost two decades and hasn't worn again — until now.

"I wear jeans and a t-shirt almost every day. I wear these shoes all the time, but actually this jacket, I've only worn one other time and it was at my dad's inauguration in 2005," Bush Hager, 39, says of the embroidered ivory Oscar de la Renta jacket she first wore to dad George W. Bush's presidential inauguration. "So I haven't worn it in almost 20 years."

The late fashion designer, who also designed Bush Hager's wedding gown, created the intricately beaded coat for the historic day. "He was a beloved man in my life," Bush Hager says of de la Renta.

jenna bush hager
Credit: Mei Tao

Since that day in January 2005, former First Lady Laura Bush kept it safe "in an archive box in Dallas," Bush Hager says. But the star had it shipped to her and modeled it once again for a special photoshoot in PEOPLE's annual Beautiful Issue on newsstands everywhere Friday, April 2. "They sent it to me just for this. It's nostalgic to wear something that you haven't worn in 15+ years," she says.

jenna and barbara bush in 2005
Credit: Mark Wilson/Getty

When Bush Hager first wore the design, she was in her early 20s, and now after having three children, "life has changed in so many ways" and "it doesn't fit exactly the same." Although she says it can feel "a little depressing" that the coat fits differently, she doesn't let it bring her down. "It's also beautiful because of what I've done since then. I created these precious people that fill me up more than a size 2 or size 4 jacket ever could," says Bush Hager.

Hear more from Bush Hager's interview on the PEOPLE Every Day podcast, below, and check out more PEOPLE Every Day, airing now on iHeartMediaApple podcastsSpotifyStitcher or wherever you listen to your podcasts.:

The former First Daughter remembers feeling no pressure about what to wear during her time in the White House. "We didn't have a stylist. I still don't have a stylist. We just were what we thought was pretty. We wore things that our friends designed [and] American designers that we love," the star says of the fashion choices she and sister Barbara Bush made.

"Honestly there were no expectations to look perfect or any sort of way when it came to my family," she adds. "We were allowed to be ourselves. We thought less about the clothes we wore and more about the amazing experience of living history."

Pick up PEOPLE's Beautiful Issue, on stands Friday, for more from Jenna Bush Hager and many more beautiful stars.