Well, this is a little weird.
First Oscar de la Renta sounded off about his disappointment with Michelle Obama’s red McQueen that she wore to the state dinner hosting Chinese President Hu Jintao. “My understanding is that the visit was to promote American-Chinese trade — American products in China and Chinese products in America,” de la Renta told WWD. “Why do you wear European clothes?”
Now the CFDA has issued a statement echoing de la Renta’s sentiments: “CFDA believes in promoting American fashion. Our First Lady Michelle Obama has been wonderful at promoting our designers, so we were surprised and a little disappointed not to be represented for this major state dinner.” Apparently CFDA pres Diane von Furstenberg sent this statement in to WWD while recuperating from her recent skiing accident.
It’s sort of like the CFDA are Michelle Obama’s parents and they’re shaming her. Which is bit strange considering all that the First Lady has done to elevate and expose emerging American designers, not to mention championing established American designers as well. We loved Mrs. O’s choice of McQueen (an alteration of a dress from Sarah Burton‘s 2011 resort collection), as did Cathy Horyn and Robin Givhan, but we also noted that there was some expectation that she’d wear a Chinese American designer. But the red color seemed appropriate given its significance to Chinese culture.
Is it the CFDA’s place to admonish the First Lady for her sartorial choices?