Michelle Ma Belle!
First Lady of Fashion on the cover of Vogue
-April Daniels Hussar
Darn – I knew I shouldn’t have let my subscription expire! The long-awaited, much talked-about Vogue issue has hit the Internet … Michelle Obama, the woman Vogue calls “The First Lady The World’s Been Waiting For” is on the cover – and WOW.
Photographed – of course – by reigning queen of fashion portraiture Annie Leibovitz (something tells me she didn’t ask Michelle to pose half naked in a sheet), Michelle wore her own clothes – from Jason Wu to Narciso Rodriguez to – of course – J. Crew. (No word yet on whether Anna Wontour suffered a stroke at the thought of such pedestrian togs on her pages. Yes we can, indeed!)
Written by Vogue Editor-at-Large Andre Leon Tally (a self-proclaimed passionate supporter of the Obamas), the profile offers a glimpse into Michelle’s life – not just as a First Lady and fashion icon, but as a wife, mother and regular woman. Tally’s adoration of his subject comes through, even in the condensed version of the story available on Style.com … and why not? It’s a celebration.
Some of the highlights …
On Michelle’s figure:
With her long, lean, athletic frame, she moves as if she could have danced with Alvin Ailey in another life. Curled up in the corner of a huge taupe velvet sofa, wearing knee-high boots as she nestles into the cushions, she almost seems like any other mom recently relocated to a city because of her husband’s new job.
Michelle on her style:
“I love clothes,” she admits. “First and foremost, I wear what I love. That’s what women have to focus on: what makes them happy and what makes them feel comfortable and beautiful. If I can have any impact, I want women to feel good about themselves and have fun with fashion.”
Michelle on the much-maligned cardigan she wore over her Narciso Rodriguez dress on election night:
“I’m not going to pretend that I don’t care about it,” Mrs. Obama says of the criticism. “But I also have to be very practical. In the end, someone will always not like what you wear – people just have different tastes. Some will think that a sweater was horrible, [but] I was cold; I needed that sweater!”
Michelle on her vision of the White House:
“We want entertaining in the White House to feel like America, that we are reminded of all the many facets of our culture. The Latino community, the Asian-American community, the African-American community … Hip-hop, spoken word – we want to bring the youth in, for them to hear their voices in this.”
“I am excited about the potential of the White House kitchen being a learning environment for the community. The current chef, Cristeta Comerford, is the only female chef in the history of the White House. She’s a young Filipina woman, a mother with a young child, and I am excited to get to know her and for her to know us as a family…”
Michelle on her kids:
“I’m going to try to take them to school every morning-as much as I can,” she says of Natasha (a.k.a. Sasha), seven, and Malia, ten. “But there’s also a measure of independence. And obviously there will be times I won’t be able to drop them off at all. I like to be a presence in my kids’ school. I want to know the teachers; I want to know the other parents.”
And I bet they are dying to get to know you, Michelle!
I for one can’t wait to get a copy of the landmark issue – it’s something I plan to save for my own little girl.