It was like some sort of current events kismet that Michelle Obama gave a powerful and inspiring speech at the Democratic National Convention–a mere two days before New York Fashion Week officially began–wearing a sleeveless jacquard dress that rocked the nation. Within minutes–seconds!–of the First Lady walking onto the DNC stage, the Twitter blew up with, “Who made that dress?” (and seconds after that: “What nail color is that?!”).
The mystery was quickly solved: It was a dress by New York-based designer Tracy Reese, who’s showing her Spring 2013 collection this afternoon in the tents. We caught up with the designer backstage before her show as she was overseeing hair and makeup while simultaneously getting a pretty badass two-toned talon mani (more on that in our upcoming show review). Obviously we had one thing on our minds: That dress!
Fashionista: So what are the logistics behind creating a dress for Michelle Obama?
Tracy Reese: I can’t really talk about that. It’s pretty simple: They select things from the line and sometimes we just have to make it longer.
Were there any snafus in the production process or funny anecdotes along the way?
Not really. It went pretty smoothly. I mean it was all happening the same time we were preparing for Fashion Week, so everybody had to really be on their toes and on the schedule and make sure that it happened in good time and we were trying to push something forward that we’re planning so that’s always a little bit of a hustle.
Even though the dress was custom, it wasn’t confirmed that the First Lady would wear your dress until she walked out onto the stage. What were the first words out of your mouth when you saw her?
Oh, she looked beautiful. I mean I really wanted to hear the speech, so we were live streaming. She just looked radiant and she looked comfortable in her own skin. She usually does. I think that she’s very smart in her choices that way where it’s Michelle that you see. It’s interesting so much talk has surrounded the dress because that was one of the best speeches, it was probably THE best speech of the whole convention and that should really be in the spotlight.
I read that you’re rushing the Michelle Obama dress into production. When will we see it in stores?
It’s probably going to take like 8 to 12 weeks. We’re trying to expedite.
Get your name on that waiting list now, people.