While she's undoubtedly brainy, pretty, and a model mom, the real reason we're all Michelle Obama obsessed is because she's as into fashion as the rest of us. Her shoe collection alone proves she's one of the girls, and she loves wearing a chic White House/Black Market sheath as much as something fab from Sophie Theallet or Rodarte, and occasionally looks every inch the fashionista in an insidery label like Junya Watanabe. “The remarkable thing about Michelle Obama’s style is that it’s aspirational, while still relatable," notes Mary Tomer, who blogs as "Mrs. T" at the site she helped found, Mrs-O.org - dedicated to all things sartorially related to the current First Lady. "It’s become the ideal for many American women. I think women see a bit of their own style in hers.”
Tomer's new book on Michelle Obama, "Mrs. O: The Face of Fashion Democracy," features more than 120 photos of Michelle's various ensembles, fashion illustrations, and behind-the-scenes interviews with some of her fave designers, including Isabel Toledo, Jason Wu, Thakoon, Michael Kors, and Maria Pinto.
While the premise of the book is that she's ushered in a new era of "fashion democracy", dubbing her Mrs. O obviously hearkens back to her fashion'y predecessor in the White House, Jackie O. Interestingly, Jackie's tastes in fashion were anything but democratic; for example, in the second quarter of 1961 alone, she dropped a cool $15,000 on clothes (about $100,000 today) - a third of it on Givenchy alone. Mrs. Obama's eclectic, modern way of mixing Target with Thakoon and J. Crew with Jason Wu definitely gives her style a more approachable feel that lets women feel like she's a more glamorous, high profile version of what they could be.
To end the book, Tomer gives the last word to Obama's most adoring fans: the people.
- Lesley Scott
(photos via Essence)
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