Wednesday, February 18, 2009
I admit it. I'm a little obsessed with Michelle Obama — her style, her regal carriage, her overall Michelle-ness. This makes sense considering my similar fascination with Jacqueline Kennedy, but Jackie was a First Lady before my time. Michelle is the first, er, First Lady I feel I can relate to, even though I'm not a Princeton-educated attorney with a global following and a husband who has access to the nuclear codes. I know I'm not alone, because at least two of my friends have come out of the closet about their girl crushes on Mrs. O. I really don't understand haters like Juan Williams, who inexplicably described her as "Stokely Carmichael in a dress." That's a slick way of trying to paint her as somehow radical and un-American, but whatever.
Anyway, I love that she's become a fashion icon — and that she's on the March cover of Vogue. While Southern women are no strangers to color, Michelle's purple sheath dresses really stand out in D.C. She knows what looks good on her body, and it helps that she obviously knows her way around a gym. She's also rekindled some of my interest in fashion, which often drives me nuts with its inscrutable trends, size-ist attitude and laughable price tags. (High-waisted jeans? Really?)
My friend C. turned me on to the Mrs. O site, a fun look at Michelle Obama's fashion influence. It doesn't seem designed to make women go buy the exact dress that Michelle wore on Tuesday, but to be inspired by her choices — or at least have fun seeing them.
I have a hard time believing people who say they are totally indifferent to fashion, because we all choose clothes to project something about ourselves — even the statement "I don't care about clothes." There's a great scene in "The Devil Wears Prada" where Meryl Streep's character icily rips Anne Hathaway's character for assuming (incorrectly) that fashion has no effect on her life.
Rock on, Mrs. O.