There were some remarkable things about the time of Barack and Michelle Obama in the White House as president and first lady of the United States. From their incredibly sweet relationship with the way the couple had a certain swag about them, fans of Obama’s presidency loved the former first pair. Among the many things for which they were praised was Michelle’s impeccable wardrobe that fashionistas almost drooled all over the world. In her bestselling memoir Becoming, the mother of the two readers gave an extensive look at what went into making her style at the White House one of the best the country has ever seen.
The 55-year-old shared an excerpt from her book with Elle in which she spoke about her style strategy as the country’s first lady. Michelle figured out how much from the moment of her husband’s campaign everything from her pearls, belts, off-the-rack dresses by J. Crew and ‘apparently brave white choice for an inaugural dress’ seemed to trigger a series of opinions. and direct feedback. “She saw how people seem to focus more on what she was wearing than what she had to say.
Michelle mentioned such an incident and wrote: I left the stage in London after being moved to tears when I spoke to the girls at Elizabeth Garrett Anderson School just to learn that the first question to one of my staff members was a reporter was focused was “Who made her dress?” She revealed that although this behavior failed her, she tried “to re-arrange it as an opportunity to learn, to use what power I could find in a situation I had never chosen myself.” The philanthropist hoped that people would also pay attention to what she had to say about important topics of children such as health when they flipped through a magazine to admire her outfit.
Speaking of her White House style strategy, the bestseller author wrote, I paid for all my own clothing and accessories – with the exception of some items such as the couture-level robes I wore for formal events, which were lent to me by the designers and would later are donated to the National Archive, so according to ethical guidelines of the White House. Regarding my choices, I tried to be somewhat unpredictable, to prevent someone from posting a message on what I was wearing. It was a thin line to walk. I had to stand out without overshadowing others, merging in, but not blurring.
She wrote: even as a black woman, I knew that I would be criticized if I was seen as showy and high-end, and I would also be criticized if I was too casual. So I confused it. I would match a Michael Kors skirt with a Gap T-shirt. One day I wore something from Target and Diane von Furstenberg the next day. I wanted to draw attention to and celebrate American designers, especially those who were less established, even though it sometimes frustrated the old guard, including Oscar de la Renta, who was reportedly dissatisfied with not wearing his creations. For me, my choices were just a way to use my curious relationship with the public gaze to stimulate a varied set of up-and-comers, she wrote.
She made her impeccable style clear by having her trusted stylist Meredith Koop on board. Michelle credited Buy many of her iconic fashion moments as a first lady. She revealed how she met Koop, a young salesperson at the time, in a Chicago boutique during Obama’s campaign and later persuaded her to move to Washington and work for her as a personal assistant and stylist when her husband was elected president .
Together Michelle and Koop were always careful with their wardrobe. In my dressing room, I put on a new dress and squatted, lunged, and turned my arms around to make sure I could move. A bit too restrictive, I put the rack back. When I was traveling, I took backup outfits with me, anticipating changes in weather and schedule, not to mention nightmare scenarios with spilled wine or broken zippers. I also learned that it was important to always pack a garment suitable for a funeral, regardless of what, because Barack was sometimes called with little notice to be there while soldiers, senators, and world leaders were left to rest, wrote Michelle. .
Besides Koop, Michelle also credited her hairdresser, Johnny Wright and make-up artist, Carl Ray, because she had always made her look flawless. She claimed that ‘the trifecta’ gave her the confidence to enter the public eye without fearing her appearance. Michelle also reflected on a certain truth that she noticed during her time as the first lady. Today almost every woman in public life – politicians, celebrities, you name it – has a version of Meredith, Johnny and Carl. It is anything but a requirement, a built-in allowance for our social double standard, she revealed.