Barack Obama

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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Andy Murray and Novak Djokovic were not the only two men working at Wimbledon yesterday; Prime Minister David Cameron (left) and Labour leader Ed Miliban (below) were on the job too. At least they looked as if they were: in dark suits and their respective party-tone ties (light blue and red), they seemed as if they were on their way to Prime Minister’s question time, not the hottest men’s tennis final in years (and I mean “hot” in both senses of the word). What to conclude?  Read more

Look: it’s me and mini-me! Or me and not-so-mini-me! Ok, actually, it’s Barack Obama and Senegal’s President Macky Sall, in matching outfits, from the light blue ties and white shirts down to the two-button suits.  Read more

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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This is not a trick question. The English supermodel and the American President have, however, adopted a similar approach to dressing. Read more

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

In one of those cosmic coincidences of timing, the last night of the Democratic convention, where President Obama talked often about the long hard, road ahead, also coincided with Fashion’s Night Out, that sybaritic extravaganza of shopping and schmoozing (well, mostly schmoozing, if you listen to retailers who Do Not Want to be Named) that also happened to mark the first day of New York Fashion Week. It made for a pretty powerful contrast. STill, my favourite fashion moment was not the Karaoke at Michael Kors, but rather what was on stage at the DNC, from Mr O’s tie to Mrs O’s new designer. Read more

If anyone still doubted the fact that the Obama camp is embracing former President Bill Clinton and vice versa, last night’s convention put an end to it, not only because of what the former President said, very eloquently, but because of how the two men looked. I mean – this is like high school: they’re almost matching! Read more

Despite having displayed an admirable consistency during the campaign thus far, dress if not policy-wise, yesterday night Mitt Romney gave up the sartorial fight, and switched sides. Yes, like so many of his winning predecessors before him, including Barack Obama, Bill Clinton, and George W Bush (once), for his speech accepting the Republican party nomination for President, he wore…a red tie. Why do we care?
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Allow me to toot our own horn here for a moment, and note there’s a very interesting piece today in the FT by my colleague Stephanie Kirchgaessner on various industries and the presidential candidate they support. Romney seems to have come out on top in a bunch of them, at least as far as donations go but at least one other industry that wasn’t on the list skews very heavily BO (unfortunate initials, I know): fashion.
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For so long, fashion was so good for the Obamas: it clothed them, made Mrs O into a celebrity whose every outfit was lovingly tracked, and won them kudos for promoting new business and helping young entrepreneurs. The way they looked – the labels they wore — positioned the First Couple as global, youthful, daring: a new brand to rebrand the country. And then, this week, it bit them. Read more

There is a tendency, among political leaders, especially of the UK-US variety, to engage in sartorial covert diplomacy during state visits; for the visitor to effectively mirror the dress of the visitee in order to suggest a discrete sort of understanding of the agenda — at least as far as photo ops go. Yesterday, however, when David Cameron showed up for his current US trip, the changed nature of the relationship seemed to be reflected in his wardrobe. One day in, there’s been zero matchy-matchy.

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The colour gurus at the Pantone Colour Institute have released their predictions for top colours of Fall 2012, just in time for New York Fashion Week. And why, you ask, should non-fashion people care? Because, I say, this will give us a sense of what we are going to see on the general election trail this fall.

(It is also an indication of the shades we may be inexplicably, but inexorably drawn to as we embark on post-holiday, back-to-work shopping.) Read more

To a certain extent every national leader is in a form of costume every day of their term, but today this issue takes on a very specific meaning. Tonight, after all, thousands of children will dress up like everything from Leonid Brezhnev to Ninja turtles and though in 2009 the White House joined in the fun, with Michelle Obama dressing up like a cat complete with spotty ears and painted-on whiskers, this year, celebrating three days early, she opted for almost no costume at all. It’s a telling evolution.

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Dunno about you, but I thought debates were useful in part because they help voters distinguish between candidates. Yesterday in Iowa for their first showdown in the bizarrely important early primary state, many of the Republican wanna-be presidents seemed to have forgotten that tenet, and instead dressed to be indistinguishable – not only from each other, but from President Barack Obama,  Read more

If ever a man tried to telegraph the fact he was stuck between two competing factions via his tie, it’s Barack Obama.

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Rick Perry, the Texas governor who is apparently exploring the idea of a 2012 presidential bid, has at least one thing going for him, other than his catchy “Texas job creation” theme: his hair. It’s lush! It’s long! It’s electable! Read more

If the Obamas trip to the UK isn’t the most sartorially co-ordinated opening of a State visit in history, I’ll eat my Philip Treacy hat.

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I was struck by the fact, watching President Obama’s speech last night announcing the death of Osama Bin Laden, that for the occasion he had donned classic commander-in-chief mufti. Read more

I think you could have guessed at the message of unity and compromise (kind of) even before President Barack Obama opened his mouth last night. Or any art major could.

Instead of opting for his classic signature tie in that nice shade of True Blue (worn at least 90 per cent of the time over the last two years during public appearances, the meeting with Hu Jintao last week being a rare exception), or swapping sides entirely to wear Reagan Red in a direct appeal for fellowship to Republicans, he opted for a sort of bluish lilac shade.

Or, as one friend wrote, “Wisteria.”

And, if you look at the two guys behind him – Biden in blue stripes, Boehner in pink – and then combine the colours of their ties, you get….sort of a bluish lilac.

Compromise! A little of his agenda, a little of their’s! Read more