US election

The burning questions of: 1) whether Anna Wintour’s new big job at Conde Nast will mean she steps down her maybe-possibly-political ambitions and involvement; and 2) to whom she will lend her formidable bundling skills to now President Obama is in his second term have both been resoundingly put to rest – by Ms Wintour herself. Finally! we can sleep at night.

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The Anna-Wintour-for-ambassador rumours that have surrounded the US Vogue editor in chief ever since she became a “super-bundler” for Barack Obama have picked up steam lately: on Monday, even erstwhile presidential non-contender Donald Trump offered his two cents on the matter (“I think she’d be an amazing choice”). But c’mon guys: let’s think about this realistically for the moment.

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Four years ago last week, Michelle Obama stepped into the public eye on election night wearing a red-and-black Narciso Rodriguez dress that launched an obsession. It was an obsession about what she wore and how she wore it – and that in turn launched the careers of numerous designers, popularised the concept of high/low dressing and upturned the unspoken law that said First Ladies must wear only American designers. Along the way, it redefined what “American” designer actually meant: Cuban-American (Isabel Toledo), Chilean-American (Maria Cornejo), Chinese-American (Jason Wu) and Nepalese-American (Prabal Gurung).

Last Tuesday, in the same situation, thumbs-up and hugging her husband as he officially won his second term as US president, Mrs Obama ended that conversation.

Last night, appearing on stage to celebrate her husband’s next four years as President, Michelle Obama did something interesting: she wore an old dress. Specifically, she wore a burgundy Michael Kors brocade dress she has worn TWICE — count ‘em — before. Given the amount of attention her clothes get, and what her choices can do for a designer, this was a clear statement about a desire to move the conversation. We’ve talked about this dress already, after all. Now let’s talk about what not getting a new dress means. Read more

Last night in their last ditch rallies, both Ann Romney and Michelle Obama, first-ladies-in-waiting, demonstrated interesting differences in cover-up style. I am not talking about political subterfuge. I’m talking about coats. Read more

Whoever wins the American presidential race next Tuesday, one thing is certain: he will accept his election in a single-breasted dark suit, white shirt and (it’s 99 per cent sure) red or blue tie. How do we know this?

If anyone is in doubt about how President Obama will look tonight, during the last debate of this increasingly close election, here’s a clue, courtesy of Michael Lewis’s Vanity Fair profile. Read more

Two men: both in dark suits, white shirts, little flag pins; one in red tie, one in blue tie.

One week later: same men, dark suits, white shirts, little flag pins; one in red tie, one in blue tie. Read more

Whoops. Last night both Michelle Obama and Ann Romney wore matching hot pink ensembles to watch their hubbies, in similarly matching dark suit-white-shirt-little flag-pin ensembles – verbally duke it out at Hofstra University. Given how close this election seems to be, both though it was probably time for a bold statement, reaching out to women, attracting the “soft” vote, showing awareness of healthcare issues, etc. It’s just unfortunate they chose the same statement. Read more