Radiant Orchid, Pantone's newly decreed color of 2014, may be the hue on everyone's mind ATM -- but let's not forget about this year's pick, Emerald Green, just yet. Michelle Obama clearly hasn't.
It's safe to say the debate over whether Michelle Obama should or should not have worn a foreign designer to the China state dinner has been blown out of proportion. It started when Oscar de la Renta, followed quickly by the CFDA (via a statement by president Diane von Furstenberg) and then WWD condemned the First Lady for wearing McQueen instead of an American designer to the state dinner, which they interpreted as her lack of support for the US fashion industry (which relies heavily on China). Leading fashion writers Cathy Horyn, Robin Givhan and Kate Betts all chimed in with their opinions. And even though Michelle Obama wore that controversial McQueen three weeks ago (on January 19) folks are still talking about it. Just yesterday, in response to the First Lady saying, "Women, wear what you love. That's all you can say. That's my motto. It's nice to have on a nice suit. But it's nicer to change a generation, in terms of their health. It's a better use of my time to focus on rallying this country around our military families. I mean, there's so much that I hope to do in this role, that makes a difference in people's lives," Nanette Lepore, one of New York Garment Center's most ardent advocates wrote this in the Huffington Post: Five years of raising awareness for New York's Garment Center have been rendered irrelevant by one statement. What Michelle Obama chooses to wear can save and create American jobs. Her influence on the American fashion industry does not detract from her agenda in the East Wing. The First Lady can support her causes and simultaneously support a valuable American industry and the thousands of people it employs. I wish she would rethink her statement. Yesterday, at a White House luncheon, Michelle Obama told reporters, "Clothes are just the thing that you wear to do the stuff you need to do.” According to Politico, one reporter then asked about her decision to wear a British label to the China state dinner. Here's what she had to say:
There she is, First Lady Michelle Obama, gleaming like a sapphire amidst a sea of navy and black suits at tonight's State of the Union. She's wearin
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.