Dress code apparently upheld

White House tree 2009New York’s The Cut managed to come up with a headline of vast snarkiness: “Michelle Obama Wore Clothes to Light the Christmas Tree,” which spawned rather a lot of variations on the theme of “Well, I should hope so.” (For example, this from Suzette: “Heaven protect us and save us all from the day when she makes headlines for doing something without wearing clothes.” And I, of course, weighed in with a tweet, noting in follow-ups that it’s December, after all.)

This isn’t the outfit she wore for the National Christmas Tree Lighting ceremony on Thursday — that would be here — but it’s still pretty sweet: understated, cut to something resembling proper proportions, and utterly lacking in wacky accessories.

(Spotted by Lawren; photo by Olivier Douliery/Abaca.)


  1. Laura »

    5 December 2009 · 4:50 pm

    I think she’s recently gotten a new (or perhaps just hired) a stylist. She ain’t no natural beauty that’s for sure.

  2. Suzette »

    5 December 2009 · 8:16 pm

    She gets it right about once in 10 times.

  3. Donna B. »

    5 December 2009 · 8:36 pm

    It’s the belts I hate. They make her look frumpy, fat, and so out-of-date, even if they are the “latest” thing.

    When she sticks to classic cuts and styles, she looks fine. But it is when she strays that she lets it be known she really doesn’t have a good sense of style or proportion.

    It’s perhaps unfortunate that all First Ladies will forever be held to the standard of Jackie Kennedy.

  4. J.S.Bridges »

    6 December 2009 · 8:00 am

    Woman’s got a problem that’s really difficult to overcome: No matter what she wears, it’s always apparent to a greater or lesser extent that she’s got a caboose the size that the Union Pacific would have carried a whole work crew in, complete with a pot-bellied stove. Unless she wears things that are engineered properly to minimize that, which she only does publicly about 20% of the time…well…the results are NOT good. Belts – especially those “fashionable” wide-and-high cartridge-belt thingies – make it much, MUCH worse.

    Despite the yeoman efforts of the “fashion” media, et.al. to try to claim otherwise, she is NOT the image of a high-fashion model, no matter what the “camouflage” efforts, and she’s never going to be. She’s a BIG woman with a BIG behind, and that’s always going to show to some extent.

    Plus, she’s got about as little “fashion sense” as any President’s wife since Mamie Eisenhower’s time, or even before that.

  5. CGHill »

    6 December 2009 · 9:37 am

    I have no particular problem with bootyliciousness, as it were, and I think Sir Mix-A-Lot would back me up, so to speak, on that.

    I can see some of her staff, though, thinking to themselves, “Why, oh, why, couldn’t we get someone more Halle Berry-ish?” You have to work with the First Lady you have, not the First Lady you want.

    Aside: Inevitably there will be movies made about this administration; would anyone have the cheek to tap Tyler Perry to play Mrs O?

  6. Lisa Paul »

    7 December 2009 · 11:35 pm

    I’m assuming J.S. Bridges has the body of a Greek god or only wears perfectly tailored suits from a Saville row tailor. Or he surely would not be throwing stones.

  7. J.S.Bridges »

    8 December 2009 · 8:26 am

    Now, now, dear little Lisa-the-catty…

    I would submit that:

    a) J.S.Bridges is neither deliberately, repeatedly and representationally in the public eye as an alleged paragon of fashion/physical virtue, nor near-constantly touted by almost all national media sources as very like the present-day reincarnation of Coco Chanel.

    b) Observing and pointing out the relevant facts of an unfavorable situation that can (and should) be alleviated much more readily by dealing realistically with it (as opposed to claiming it simply does not exist, or simply looking the other way) is not “throwing stones” – it’s “casting an honest light.”

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