Category Archives: Foreign First Ladies

Michelle Obama and Kate Middleton’s fashion at Buckingham Palace

Michelle meets Catherine (Photo by Toby Melville-WPA Pool/Getty Images)

First Lady Michelle Obama not only met Queen Elizabeth II, but also Kate Middleton, now known as Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge, Tuesday afternoon at Buckingham Palace in London, England. President Obama and the first lady are in the UK for a two day State Visit at the invitation of the queen.

For this special occasion, Mrs. Obama wore a mint hued floral dress, which appeared in designer Barbara Tfank’s Resort 2011 collection. The A-line skirt with its defined, high waist flattered Michelle’s lovely pear shape. She layered this dress with a pale pink, cropped cardigan adorned with her signature jeweled brooch.

Catherine & Michelle (Photo by Toby Melville-WPA Pool/Getty Images)

As for Catherine, the duchess wore a Shola Bandage Dress for this first royal appointment, post honeymoon. The beige dress with square neckline and angular cap sleeves is by one of her favorite designers, Reiss.

During their State Visit, the first couple will be attending a state banquet at Buckingham Palace and the president will address both houses of parliament at Westminster Hall.

Whose ensemble do you like best?

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Fashion Flashback: Nancy Reagan’s White House Christmas themes

Former President Ronald Reagan and Nancy Reagan (Ronald Reagan Presidential Library)

Former First Lady Nancy Reagan had the privilege of choosing the White House Christmas theme for eight consecutive Christmases. Her first official tree in 1981 was decorated with ornaments lent by the Museum of American Folk Art. However, for each following Christmas, Mrs. Reagan arranged for all the ornaments to be made by the members of Second Genesis, a drug treatment program in Washington, D.C., Maryland, and Virginia.

Foil cones and snowflakes were made in 1982, and then reused the following year for the White House tree, which featured old-fashioned toys, lent by the Margaret Woodbury Strong Museum. In 1984, the tree contained all natural pieces crafted by the Brandywine Museum in Pennsylvania. To complement these pieces, Second Genesis contributed ornaments fashioned out of plant materials.

In 1985 the tree was decorated with 1,500 ornaments made from holiday cards sent to President Reagan the year before. In order for these many ornaments so be made, Second Genesis paired up with the Reagan’s Executive Residence staff. The team was so great together that they worked alongside one another the next three holiday seasons. Together in 1986, they made 15 soft-sculpture nursery rhyme scenes and 100 geese ornaments for Mrs. Reagan’s “Mother Goose” themed Christmas. In 1987, the “Musical” tree was trimmed in miniature instruments, sheet music, and notes. For Nancy’s final “Old-fashioned” Christmas tree of 1988, the White House carpenters created 300 wood candles to hang from the Blue Room tree. In addition to these pieces, Mrs. Reagan added hand-blown glass ornaments from the Eisenhower Administration along with Pat Nixon’s state flower balls of 1969.

What do you think of Nancy’s style motif for the holidays?

Michelle Obama: Mod and Modest in Indonesia

President and First Lady Obama with the President and First Lady of Indonesia (Jim Watson/Getty Images)

Earlier today, President and First Lady Obama arrived in Jakarta, Indonesia, the world’s largest democracy, for a three-day visit. They began their day with a meeting of President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono and First Lady Ani Yudhoyono of Indonesia during an official arrival ceremony held at the State Palace Complex Istana Merdeka. After this meeting, the two presidents are expected to share a conversation about security and economic issues. Any ideas on what they first ladies will discuss?

For this first appearance in Indonesia, the lady looks magnificently stunning, while still respectful of the Indonesian culture. Michelle was dressed in a black and red patterned dress with pleating at the center of the waistline, a slenderizing look. Under this dress, she wore a pair of loose fitting, black trousers. If Michelle were wearing this garment in America, she would simply wear the dress alone; however, I think this pairing of pants with dresses is quite chic. I, myself, would be too afraid to wear this avant-garde fashion on the streets, but Michelle is much more daring with her style than I am. Hopefully, Michelle will bring this look back to the states! What do you think about it?

As far as President Obama goes, he definitely let me down with his outfit. He did not change from the same suit he was wearing this morning. Sadly, he did not even change his tie. His golden beige tie matched Michelle’s dress this morning, and it is a shame he did not switch into a red tie to match Mrs. Obama once again. After all, President Yudhoyono even chose a tie to match his wife’s blue dress.

Sparkling in Metallics at the Indian State Dinner

Indian State Dinner (Charles Dharapak/AP)

Tonight in India, President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama are attending the Indian State Dinner in New Delhi. The president and first lady are the honored guests of Pratibha Patil, the President of India, and her husband, Devisingh Patil.

For this state dinner event, Michelle chose to wear a floor-length, sparkling silver skirt paired with a golden blouse and belt. Mrs. Obama must know her fashion, because this mix of metallics is one of the hottest fashion trends this fall season. In addition to Michelle’s stunning outfit, notice how the President of India is also dressed in gold. Did the two women plan this?

Michelle Obama embraces the Indian fashion and culture

Dinner in India (theobamadiary.com)

After taking part in a Diwali celebration, dancing with some children and then, speaking at a university in India yesterday, President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama paid a visit to the residence of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and First Lady Gursharan Kaur of India. The two couples dined together after the Prime Minister and President Obama held a joint press conference at Hyderabad House in New Delhi, India.

What Michelle Obama wore to this press conference and dinner has everyone talking! The first lady chose to dress in a garment which definitely shows that she is embracing  the Indian culture. Mrs. Obama wore a simple, black top and full, ankle-length skirt, She paired this look with a Dries Van Noten jacket (seen here) and a gold and silver tassel necklace, designed by Ranjana Khan. Surprisingly enough, the jacket does not at all look like it is from the Indian culture when paired with different articles of clothing, as seen in the runway shot. However, the way Michelle styled her ensemble, it looks as though it was purchased in India. The tassel definitely adds that extra touch of Indian culture, perhaps too much?

Yesterday, I noted that I loved Michelle’s ability to be herself wherever she goes, but was I too quick to pay her that compliment? Is this outfit “Michelle”?

Flying in Fashion, Desitination: India

President and First Lady Obama (Kevin Lamarque/Reuters)

Yesterday afternoon, President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama departed the White House in pursuit of India. The couple will begin their tour of India today in Mumbai, honoring the victims of the terrorist attacks. Upon departure yesterday, Michelle Obama was dressed in a blue, floral dress, khaki coat. With this ensemble she wore black tights and knee-high boots, a staple this fall season. What do you think about this casual look on Michelle?

(J. Scott Applewhite/AP Photo)

In my opinion, this outfit looks great on Michelle! Khaki is the perfect color for the change of seasons. Her dress is also great. The ruching of material in the middle of this dress accentuates Mrs. Obama’s waistline, making it appear smaller to the eye.

After visiting Mumbai, the president and first lady will be making many other stops, for both business and pleasure, including a few dinners with Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and First Lady Gursharan Kaur of India. The first couple will even be joining the Prime Minister and his wife at a state dinner in Delhi on Monday night. Perhaps Michelle Obama will choose to honor the Indian culture by wearing another dress by Naeem Khan as she did at a previous state dinner held at the White House (seen here). What do you think? According to The Wall Street Journal, Michelle “has three or four amazing other dresses” designed by Naeem Khan.

Any predictions on what Michelle will be wearing this week?

The Great Monochromatic Mistake

First Ladies Chantal Biya and Michelle Obama

I’ve heard that the so called “monochromatic” look is in (Read more about it here from Vogue), but really? I believe this look is a little extreme for first ladies. I am all for the first ladies trying to follow in the famous fashion-forward footsteps of our beloved Jacqueline Kennedy, but Jackie never made a clown out of herself.

Just last week, the First Lady of Cameroon, Chantal Biya, toured Stone Barnes Center for Food and Agriculture with Michelle Obama. The tour was an outing for several wives of those at the United Nations General Assembly in New York City. However,  what on earth is she wearing? Yes, this style might look good on the runway, but in my opinion, it is way too bright and showy for a first lady. But then again, maybe she was just trying to imitate Mrs. Obama’s style.

Just a few months earlier, Michelle Obama wore a similar suit as she spoke at the 90th anniversary of the Women’s Bureau at the Department of Labor in Washington, D.C. and highlighted (no pun intended) the progress made by women working outside the home. At this event, Mrs. Obama was dressed in head to toe papaya. Now, Michelle has always been admired for her daring spirit and bold, colorful fashion choices, but orange? Michelle went above and definitely beyond the call of fashion by adding a matching papaya brooch, shoes and even papaya lipstick. I think bright colors are stylish, however, not in abundance.

Who knows? Maybe these first ladies are setting a new trend that will catch on across the states. Or perhaps, they have made a great monochromatic mistake. What do you think?