Inauguration Diaries: Fashion

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“This choice sends a great message to the fashion community.

She could have gone with someone more obvious, like Ralph Lauren,

but this sends a message to the American designers who are

struggling. … It also says that just because she’s in the White

House, she’ll support the under-the-radar designers she wore on the

way to the White House.”
— Nicole Phelps, Style.com

She’s wearing that dress today for all of us. We’re all

wearing that dress with her. The dress is elegant, appropriate and

has the individual style stamp of Michelle Obama and is timely for

a woman in her 40s – and she wears embellishment during the day.

Hallelujah! — editorial stylist Mary Alice Stephenson

I don’t really have anything to say, other than to suggest these two didn’t take the words right out of these people’s mouths.

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  • Jennifer

    how can a dress possibly be that important???

  • Kassie

    In times like this people are doing a lot more living through others. She looks beautiful, and this makes people happy. They want to look like her and want to know how they can.

  • bigalmn

    The second photo adds to the story I heard this morning where some people had to leave their spots because they had gotten so cold after sitting there for 4 hours. That is why they are dressed the way they are in the second photo.

    How come no one ever talks about the suit that Barack Obama is wearing? He always looks dapper and together. Obviously no ones business is hanging on what he is wearing, but a lot of business could be hanging on what she is wearing.

  • new america

    I have been looking at couples lately. Watching how they look at each other and sit or stand with each other. (It was my folks 52nd wedding aniversary on the 19th).

    She looks happy, she looks proud and she looks very much in love with that man.

    For the first time, I am proud of our leaders.

  • Elizabeth T

    “timely for a woman in her 40s”

    what sort of ageist sexist spew is this? balderdash! I appreciate the fact that she dresses nicely, but …

    Her dress’ label could be Target, for all I care.

    What in the world would these women have to talk about, if Clinton was taking the Oath of Office? well, gee, Bill’s wearing a … um … suit … uh yeah, that’s what guys wear, it’s a suit timely for a man in his 50s … um … and a tie! Yeah, yeah, that tie just talks to me, he’s wearing that tie for all of us!”

  • Lily

    She looks great and so does he. My guess is that she found something she liked and wore it. That’s it folks… That’s how most of us women dress day to day…. Time to put this one to rest.

  • coldoutside

    //She’s wearing that dress today for all of us. We’re all

    wearing that dress with her//

    Well, since we are going to make ‘what you wear” an issue-

    she really is wearing that dress for all of us.

    honestly, i think that if both of them had their choice they would be wearing parkas

    -i would.

    (are we in a competition because if we are-I do not compete)

  • michele

    There are many studies that prove how cruel women can be to one another. Many social scientists think this is one of the more significant factors holding women back in the corporate world. The rational is “if I had to work my way up with no support you should have the same”.

    When will women learn?

    It was really sad because I can’t count the number of purely negative, extremely catty comments women bloggers/posters made about Michelle Obama’s outfits, particularly the Isabel Toledo she wore during the day. No doubt some of these posters were Hillary supporters. Given these sort of denigrating, “build myself up by dragging other women down” attitudes it doesn’t surprise me that Hillary lost the White House and it doesn’t surprise me our gender gets 70 cents on the dollar. You don’t see men behaving this way towards one another and we are going to continue to have problems as long as we maintain this childish, reflexive cruelty we show to one another.

  • carolynn

    Michele:

    Most of the studies you reference are ages old.

    “No doubt some of these posters were Hillary supporters. Given these sort of denigrating, “build myself up by dragging other women down” attitudes it doesn’t surprise me that Hillary lost the White House and it doesn’t surprise me our gender gets 70 cents on the dollar”

    Its also quite obvious that you know nothing about

    1. Hillary supporters

    2. Hillary Clinton’s record

    3. The factors that are behind why there is still a pay gap between men and women.

    How about sending out some love? It’s much more helpful!

  • michele

    carolynn,

    How old are you? When was the last time you worked in a corporation?

    I see the “queenbee” syndrome everyday. Indeed it is old, very old. My friends see it too. Lots of women notice this. Men too.

    In fact I do support “sending out the love” but it’s a problem when other women don’t do the same. Really it’s not even about “the love” as you put it, but just about being fair and not over critical. The criticism women had for Michelle Obama’s fashion choices are just one example. Women love to rag on other women for almost any little thing, regardless of whether it’s important or related to work or not.

    BTW I’m not against Hillary, but I do think Obama is an infinitely better choice because he happens to have a better temperament and considerable less baggage. Sadly, in this context baggage really does matter.

  • carolynn

    I’m 50. I spent 30 years working in corporations, for both men and women, (mainly women, actually) and found that it is individual character vs sex that best predicts behavior.

    I never have experienced “queen bee” behavior.

    Also, comments about fashion should be taken for what they are, which is insignificent fluff, and which thinking people always look past.

    P.S. Almost all my corporate experience was directly in the fashion field at fairly high levels.

  • coldoutside

    I like Michele Obama, I liked what she wore it was totally new-different. That is just my opinion.

    Michele, the poster here, above ,was just pointing out something very true. I echo her comments.

    Carolyn if you have never experienced the queen bee crappola, especially being from the fashion world, I wanna know where you work.

    Women are catty and mean. I have seen it, it never used to be that way but in the last 5 years it has been on the rise. What i have learned from it is that the cruelty and acts of it are more about the person doing it than the victim of their meaness.

    What do men do to one-up the other?

  • michele

    Carolyn,

    You claim that, “comments about fashion should be taken for what they are, which is insignificant fluff” but you claim to have worked in the top levels of the fashion industry for 30 years….

    That makes no sense.

    I love to read Cathy Horyn’s column in the NYTimes. I respect her because she gets that fashion is actually about how we package our inner selves for a complex outer world. Fashion statements do matter. And the fashion industry certainly matters to many who, well, actually do work in it.

    It’s hard to imagine how anyone who has spent a career working in “the fashion field” at “fairly high levels” could ever say otherwise.

  • michele

    coldoutside,

    That’s a great question. I wish Bob could start a whole topic about this, because I would love to hear other women’s experience/views.

    I used to work in a company that was about 80% men and they were *always* competing with one another, but it never got ugly. But they had it really good there because it was an extremely male dominate culture (at that job) and in general prospects for advancement for men (again at that job) were much better than for women. Maybe that was a unique situation though…