Male Box. First Lady Fashion Summit

April 23, 2009 • Male Box


Joseph Ungoco for Second City Style Magazine

While the developed world’s heads of state convened on England and
France for the G-20 and NATO Summits, respectively, the worlds of
finance and politics held their breath. For those of us in the fashion
world, we knew all along that the really important news would be who
won in the fashion sweepstakes among the wives. As the first 100 days of First Lady Fashion draws to a close, the stakes are high for Michelle Obama and the world is watching. Here’s my take on her recent European tour.

As she stepped off of Air Force One at Stansted – the last Bush
arrival at Heathrow in June 2008 wrought havoc – Mrs. Obama looked like
a bright ray of American sunshine piercing the bleak English skies. The
sunny silk dress was by Jason Wu and the sweater coat was by Azzedine Alaia. Her now signature Alaia studded belt pulled the whole look together. Things seemed – at the time – off to a good start.

The next day, Mrs. Obama arrived looking fresh and rested at 10
Downing Street for breakfast with the Browns. I couldn’t possibly tell
you what the President and the Prime Minister said or even what they
wore, but I do know that Mrs. Obama’s ensemble of an embellished
sweater and a J.Crew mint green jacquard skirt was perfectly
springtime, in sharp contrast to Mrs. Brown’s drab dark outfit,
complete with monochrome hose – in the daytime no less. Everyone in fashion seems to either love or hate that our First Lady wears so much J. Crew.
I’ll go with an uncharacteristic “no comment” at this time, but I will
say that I think it’s rather genius to wear a mass market brand when
having breakfast with the wife of a Labour Party Prime Minister. I’d
like to believe that Mrs. Obama would have dressed differently were the
current British Prime Minister a Tory.

The most anticipated event of the Obama’s European tour was their
invitation to tea at Buckingham Palace with Her Majesty, Queen
Elizabeth II. Mrs. Obama arrived perfectly dressed – for a night at
the opera! Her all black silk satin ensemble – Jason Wu opera coat,
Jimmy Choo kitten heels, and baton clutch – was undeniably chic, but
not at all appropriate for a day time event
, let along high tea
with the Queen. Things went steadily downhill from there fashion-wise.
Later it was revealed that, under the coat, Mrs. Obama was wearing an Isabel Toledo dress that was white on top and black below, paired with yet another Alaia cardigan.
The embroidered skirt of the dress, its shape enhanced by tulle
petticoats, was appropriately tea length, but the overall effect was
more “Carrie Bradshaw on the side of an M2 bus” than “First Lady of the
United States meets the Queen of England”.

Read more "First Lady Fashion Summit" here.

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