Oscar de la Renta, who’s no stranger to dressing political wives and First Ladies, just landed himself a nice little fashion retrospective exhibition…at the William J. Clinton Presidential Library and Museum of all places.
The timing of this announcement, which we read about in our just-delivered November Vogue, is interesting considering how frequently he’s dressed the wife of the Republican presidential candidate.
De la Renta has found himself at the center of some political dressing dramas over the last few years–sometimes of his own making and sometimes not. Back in January 2011, the outspoken designer famously chided Michelle Obama for not wearing McQueen to a state dinner instead of an American designer. The First Lady has notably never worn Oscar, which is actually quite unusual for women in politics.
Laura Bush and especially Hillary Clinton both had his frocks in heavy rotation when they were First Ladies. Clinton is good friends with the designer and wore one of his gowns to daughter Chelsea’s 2010 wedding. “Like so many other women the world over, I have always turned to Oscar when I needed to shine,” Clinton told Vogue.
Most recently Ann Romney has shown herself a loyal supporter, wearing his designs to the last two presidential debates. This became a partisan matter when sites like Fox News wondered why @OscarPRGirl wasn’t proudly tweeting about Romney in his designs.
Perhaps de la Renta is just a true bi-partisan designer (unlike many others in the fashion industry, namely Anna Wintour, who have not been shy about showing their support for Obama). Adding some credence to that theory? Pieces worn by both Hillary Clinton and Laura Bush will be on display at the exhibit and Vogue notes that the show hopes to travel to the George W. Bush Library in Texas and the Reagan Library in California.
Andre Leon Talley curated the exhibition, Oscar de la Renta: An American Icon, which will open in November. Forty pieces will be on display, arranged thematically into categories like “Impact” and “Caribbean.”