I have to admit, I’m actually not a full time fan of Michelle Obama’s style. Sometimes she looks fantastic, sometimes she misses the mark completely and other times she looks just okay. I have Comcast as my home page, and today I couldn’t resist the headline, Pics: Michelle Obama’s Style.
Today, I’d like to comment on Michelle’s choices: the good, the bad, and the just okay. I’m writing not to be a style critic but to illustrate some design concepts and share information that hopefully can be useful in every day dressing.
The first outfit I’d like to comment on, slide #10, is the green “mini trench” with a long sleeved purple t-shirt underneath. It’s a great business casual look. The wide collar and bright color draw attention to her face and upper body and help to visually balance her body. The whole outfit would be great except the black pants appear to be very tight fitting in the thighs. She’d look more sophisticated in a straight leg trouser that falls away from her leg. My other criticism here is that based on the photo’s caption, the event seemed as though it was official business, and the outfit is too casual.
Next, slide 22, I love Mrs. Obama’s trademark belt. A couple of seasons ago, wearing a belt at the “empire waist” was a bit trendy, but Michelle has really made the look her own. She has a very thin upper body, so it’s a very flattering to her figure. The whole ensemble is beautiful, but I would like to see an inch or so added to the dress’ hem for added grace and sophistication.
In slide 24, she again is dressed beautifully. I like that the outfit is simple and understated yet approachable, an appropriate look for visiting the soldiers at Fort Bragg.
In slide 26, Michelle is looking beautiful in green. While she wears black and white very well, she simply glows in colors. I love, love, love her hair here!
Conversely, in slide 30, this strapless gown does absolutely nothing for her. The fabric appears lumpy and is a bit too shiny, which adds pounds. While some sheaths work for Michelle Obama, the mermaid design of this dress follows her curves, i.e. clings, just a bit too closely.
Slide 34—Wow! Michelle Obama looks gorgeous here. Halters are often easier to wear than strapless gowns. The colors of this dress make her glow. Although the dress has some sheen, it’s not shiny, and she can wear a large pattern like this because she’s got the height and frame to support it. It’s a sexy look, but this is an awards program, not a political affair.
Lastly, in slides 42 and 43, Michelle is clearly dressed for two very different occasions; however, the soft, floral shirtwaist dress is far more flattering to her figure. The real reason the purple sheath, slide 42 doesn’t quite work for her is that she’s tall, and it’s just a lot of purple! Even though she is wearing her trademark belt, she would be more attractive in a silhouette that is broken up a bit more and a little less angular. The dress is very straight!
The softness of the shirtwaist dress in slide 43 flatters her body and as I mentioned earlier, she looks best in skirts and pants that float away from her hips and thighs.
Whether Michelle Obama has hit a high mark for style or made a complete fashion faux pas, what I always love about her style is the smile she wears and the quiet confidence she exudes whether she’s dressed casually or formally or somewhere in between.