Female Presidents and Prime Ministers are few and far between. We have one in the UK, in fact our second, but generally world leaders are men. So it is inevitable that some of the most prominent women we are aware of are famous for being married to Presidents and Prime Ministers. I reviewed Sam Cam when her husband left office, and I have touched on the style of Carla Bruni, but the one of the best is Michelle Obama.
What a woman! I won’t comment here on her role as “FLOTUS”, as lots has already been written. I need to talk about her clothes because this is a fashion and style blog.
The punch line, for me, is this woman looks fabulous in blocks of strong colour. Dazzling!
Michelle is tall with an athletic figure, but her underlying silhouette is shaped. Her waist is nicely defined, and with small bust and larger hips she would be described as “pear shaped”. She looks best when she keep the top half neat and fitted and allows some fullness or an A line for the skirt. However a well cut sheath dress does look good on her as she is slim with much of her height in her legs. If you sat down next to Mrs Obama she would not tower over you, but stand next to her and an average woman would look comparatively short.
Many woman who are pear shaped are a bit self conscious of wearing trousers, and I don’t think trousers are Michelle’s best look, but some shapes are better than others. I prefer the narrow legged pants (jeans with boots and the bright blue pair) rather than the very full black and white pants she is wearing with Bruni and Cameron.
For another view Jess Cartner-Morley of the Guardian has this to say about Michelle’s wardrobe, but some of the outfits she has chosen are not my cup of tea. In fact I think the green evening dress looks a bit droopy in the bust. And personally I find the shiny gold/orange Versace dress rather unpleasant.
Nevertheless Michelle brought a sense of fun and style to the White House and she championed American designers, many of them from minority communities.
I expect that we will see some interesting outfits from Melania over the next few years, but I will miss Michelle.
I always got the impression that Michelle Obama really enjoyed wearing her clothes, She has beautiful poise, and seems to know how to wear clothes, probably some of her clothes were not fully to my taste, (some could look frumpy) but I always got the impression that she knows her own style and adapts it well to the occasion
Oh I love the full pants! As a black woman, we are (in general!) less in the business of trying to ‘cover up or disguise’ the hips/butt. If you got it – flaunt it! So I don’t think she has that desire to put less emphasis on the bottom as instructed by the “fashion rules” for pears. And yes, it is all enhanced by the fact that she is so statuesque and swoon…those arms!!!
I LOVE her style. She can pretty much rock anything (as someone who doesn’t wear sporty/atheleisure looks well – I’m much too stocky). She looks just as good in shorts and a tee, or jeans, or a simple sheath or a full ball gown.
Also with you on enjoying the fact that she really ranged far and wide on the designers she wore. Her style will truly be missed by many!
What an interesting point KS! I am short but have much the same “pear-shaped” figure with quite a prominent rear. I used to be very self conscious about it until I began to work in Brixton (lots of Afro-Carribean people) and found there was some appreciation for my shape that I wasn’t expecting. I think different cultures feel differently about bodies, but eventually it is ideal if we are happy with our shape. Mrs O has nothing to worry about – I think she has an amazing figure and am envious of her looks and shape.
What a nice photographic summary of her style! She will be sorely missed. I hope she stays active because her political voice is great too
I actually like the wide pants on her. To be honest more than the clothes I love her physique, poise and how articulate she is. A classy lady.
Great fashion retrospective. Makes me realise that you know a woman has a strong sense of style when everything she wears makes you want to wear it too – or at least try it on. This is true of Michelle O, but I’m afraid it is not the case with Sophie Grégoire (Justin Trudeau’s wife) or Carla Bruni. These two both look good but I wouldn’t want to “steal” their style.
Great style indeed. But most of all I think that Michelle Obama pulls off almost anything because she is not self conscious she knows herself and feel at ease with her body and soul.
Yes. You are absolutely right.
I have appreciated FLOTUS for her support for the younger generation of American designers, and her willingness to use clothes to make a point (going on a talk show in a J Crew ensemble the night after same show discussed Sarah Palin’s clothing allowance from the political party). I consider myself lucky that I was around for the Obama’s tour of duty, that considerate and gracious people were in the spotlight for once. That intelligence and clarity mattered.
And oh, those arms! I lift more weights thanks to Michelle Obama.
SJ my good friend is a personal trainer and gets on me a little. I told him I would come to the gym every single day if he could promise me Mrs. Obama’s arms!!! 🙂
Yes – armenvy!!
What a modern couple. I will miss the Obamas in the White House.
Yes she has lovely style, but I think it is really her confidence and grace. Having said that she really rocks bright colours, I don’t mind the pants but I don’t like the green Christmas dress. That white sun dress… lordy… gorgeous!
Love her style and how, IMO, it exemplifies the best of American fashion for real women. This woman rocks clothes from the Gap just as well as couture. Her style will be sorely missed.
I do hope you do a post on the wives of the incoming President and Vice President. I was quite amazed at the clothing they wore to the concert last night. Their husbands were in impeccable tuxedos. While Melania, who is stunning, was wearing much glitz it just didn’t seem to compliment her. Perhaps the color…The Vice President’s wife’s outfit, frankly, surprised me. We have many Mennonite families around our area and it looked similar to their styles. Are they Mennonites? I do know they are religiously conservative and all that is fine but her clothing really made me curious. Look forward to your opinion in a later post, perhaps.
OK Bunny – you are on. To be honest I had never heard of the Pences before, so I will need to do a bit of research!