Did Ann Romney’s teal dress erase the gender gap? Our future First Lady wore the dress by a designer whose name I will not mention to the foreign policy debate at Lynn University. The color popped on TV screens and complimented her complexion. O’s fabulous wifie, inexplicably, wore a gray cocktail lace dress by the same designer.
I’m ready for a First Lady with bigger ambitions than to serve as a walking billboard for brown-nosing fashion industry insiders. One problem with designers getting too cozy with politicians is that designers are typically nuts, and not in a good way. Fox News reported that the notorious American Vogue editor Anna Wintour enlisted designers like Marc Jacobs to create Obama 2012 merchandize. There are many things wrong with Marc Jacobs (and I don’t mean his bizarre style). For instance, he knowingly hires underage models, the practice Anna Wintour pledged to stamp out.
Jackie Kennedy was a fashion plate, but she was the youngest First Lady in history. For this reason alone there will probably never be “the next Jackie”. Matronly Obama’s sartorial options are limited by her age and the imperfections of her figure. Every time her consultants put her in an inappropriate outfit, her faux pas are amplified by her status. She comes across as somebody who tries too hard, and fails, and makes fool of herself and her office. Michelle should have stopped competing with Jackie a long time ago.
It’s not just that Michelle won’t leave fashion alone; the fashion industry that won’t let go of her. Wintour seems hell-bent on dragging FLOTUS’s formidable behind across the finish line, and The Daily Mail has pictures to prove it (hat tip to Leslie Loftis). Michelle Malkin has a great essay on the little fascist Wintour commanding fashion insiders to back Obama, in the process alienating half of their customers. Overtly political designers whose names, again, I’m not going to mention, should keep their fingers crossed that conservative women can’t care less about their little political tantrums and will buy their product regardless.
There are rebels in the industry, though. Malkin quotes the terrific designer and brave man Bradley Scott:
Young New York City designer Bradley Scott also spoke up against ideological “persecution” in his industry. “It’s really offensive for me, as a designer, to be issued an unveiled threat by someone who could exert an enormous amount of influence over my customers, store buyers and magazine editors,” he told me on Tuesday. “I for one want absolutely nothing to do with this attack on women. This pressure upon designers should offend every woman in this country, not just the conservatives.”
Of course, not every fashion house supports the ‘Bamas in order to placate a queen bee or because, being artists, they are mad as hatters. Outfitting a First Lady is an honor, even if her taste is questionable. Early on Michelle indicated willingness to incorporate J Crew in her get ups, and the fashion house went crazy for her. Michelle’s consultants figured she needs to wear color (because she’s black?), and the J Crew catalog exploded with blinding hues. I don’t suppose they will design for Ann Romney, but if Michelle is gone, they will move on to a different aesthetic, which is a kind of progress.
P.S. Like his wife, Barack knows how to stay classy.
P.P.S. I don’t see a whole lot Obama yard signs in our bluest blue Alameda county. It’s not just my town; I go to Oakland regularly, and last weekend I was in Berkeley (yes, Berkeley). I don’t see a lot of bumper stickers either. Not much love for Romney here either, of course, but lots of people put up local election signs in their yards. I somehow don’t recall seeing a lot of Obama yard signage and bumper stickers in 08, but last presidential election cycle merchandise like tot bags and onesies was all the rage. That was before Anna Wintour became O’s super-duper bundler. I guess the glorious trendsetter was too busy with September Issue back then.