Published February 11, 2009
Michelle Obama is officially the first lady of American fashion, and she is on the March cover of Vogue magazine to prove it.
And while most cover models have their clothes chosen for them by Vogue stylists, the editors trusted the first lady to do her own styling.
"She doesn't need any help. She loves fashion and knows what works for her," Vogue's editor at large Andre Leon Talley said. "She's never had a conversation with me about, `What do you think?' or `How did this look?' And I'm glad for that."
In her first three weeks as first lady, Obama has not had to worry much about her choices, as she has played it safe with conservative fashion that combines preppy looks with ladylike accents.
In contrast to her campaign staples of shift dresses and prints, Obama has stuck with mostly solid suits and button-down blouses under sweaters.
Her color palette has remained on the darker side, sticking with black, grays and deep blues with an occasional bright colored blouse or shawl.
Still, the first lady has used her accessories as her statement pieces, whether it is through classic pearls, wide belts or her signature brooches. And while the suits and separates she has been wearing have remained slightly one-note, the looks are sensible yet chic and reflect her busy life as a working mom.
The highlights of these past few weeks include the one dress we have seen her wear and a svelt fitted suit. She wore the printed Japanese-style floral designed by New York designer Tracy Feith to the National Prayer Service last month and the black fitted suit, accessorized with two brooches, last Monday for an event at the Interior Department.
Still, we can’t wait for the end of the winter months to see if spring will bring the return of her signature bright colors and exciting prints. As she freely admits, Obama knows the fashion world has its eyes on her, and we doubt she will disappoint.
She told Vogue: "I'm not going to pretend that I don't care about it," she said. "But I also have to be very practical. In the end, someone will always not like what you wear — people just have different tastes."
Every first lady since Lou Hoover — except Bess Truman — has been photographed for the high-fashion magazine. Mrs. Obama appears wearing a magenta silk sheath dress by Jason Wu, who also designed her inaugural gown.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.