When 26-year-old Jason Wu saw that Michelle Obama chose his one-shouldered ivory gown for Tuesday night's inaugural activities, he dropped to his knees in excitement. The young New York based designer, much like Isabel Toledo, will be well known beyond the Vogue crowd after today's festivities.
Obama's dress was pretty; ebay style director Constance White described the gown as fairy-tale like. A classic Jason Wu style. The design community is ecstatic that Obama is bringing little known American designers to the forefront. But while she didn't chose Oscar de la Renta, or Carolina Herrera, she followed tradition. Jacqueline Kennedy, Laura Bush and even Mary Todd Lincoln all chose white gowns for the Inaugural balls. As usual, Obama is classic with a twist of her own: the flourishes, the overlay. It's all Michelle.
At first I wasn't sure what to think. I was attending the Biden Home States Ball and as I watched the revelers dance in sparkly confections from our locale, Michelle Obama's dress had already been seen by millions watching CNN. The texts came in fast and furious. Some of my friends, you know who you are, praised the dress. Others were appalled by the frufruness. I finally caught a glimpse on a friend's cell phone. Many people wanted to see our first lady in a sexy, tailored silhouette. I think the dress was pretty. It was what we've become accustomed seeing Michelle in. She has defined her style, which is very understated with a broach. (We know how much Michelle Obama loves the broach.)
The one shouldered silhouette shows off her trim physique. We can't ignore the fact that having a youngish first lady in the White House means a new fashion era can't help but be ushered in. (I can hear your silent thank yous.)
Strangely enough, it's still not clear what color the dress was exactly. It looked white on camera, but there were news reports that it was a pale yellow, because the dress was not as light as Barack Obama's white tie get up courtesy of Hart Schaffner Marx.
I would have liked to see Michelle Obama's hair up. And I had my fingers crossed that Obama would be loyal to Maria Pinto. Pinto designed Obama's famed purple sheath and the turquoise dress she wore during the Democratic National Convention and there is something about her work that I just like. Michelle Obama's satin slippers gave the gown the perfect monochromatic look.
All in all Michelle Obama's long awaited dress was an historic dress for an historic day. Classic, unmistakably Obama. And no doubt, white gowns and gold sheath dress suits are about to be in like Flynn. What did you all think of Michelle Obama's Inaugural choices?
PS Jill Biden wowed the crowd in a floor-length red gown by red carpet favorite, Reem Acra. More information on her get up tomorrow.