When the Obama family took the stage, victorious, on election night this past November, everyone took note not just of Michelle Obama and what she was wearing but also of her daughters: Sasha and Malia had grown up! The New York Times‘ Cathy Horyn tweeted, “The Obama girls might be the fashion news tonight–full skirts, bright color, cute.”
In November 2008, when those first election night images of the truimphant Obama family circulated, the Obama girls were just that–girls. Sasha was 7 and Malia was 10. Fast forward four years and they are young women wearing designers like Chris Benz and Lauren Moffat and cool high street brands like ASOS. Malia is just as tall as her statuesque mom.
A few days after the election, the New York Times wondered whether it was OK to talk about the Obama girls and their fashion. We’ve obsessively chronicled Michelle Obama’s fashion for four years (and will do it for four more) but are the Obama girls fair game? Eric Wilson noted that “[I]t can also be risky for designers [to send out press releases when the Obama girls wear their clothes] if it appears they are capitalizing on the girls as celebrities.”
Nevertheless, when WWD asked designers to submit sketches for Michelle Obama’s inauguration look, most submitted designs for her daughters as well. Tommy Hilfiger only submitted sketches for Sasha and Malia.
It seems the Obama girls are fair game on Inaugration day. But it’s probably best that it’s only during national events, when the girls will be photographed by every major news outlet, that we comment on their style.