In 2008, after wearing a yellow J. Crew ensemble on the Tonight Show with Jay Leno, Michelle Obama caused a surge in sales for the mall brand and solidified herself as a stylish woman of the people. At the time, it was revealed that Sarah Palin had a $150,000 budget for her campaign wardrobe. Obama served as a stark differentiator and model Democrat, often championing well-priced wares for her appearances. Fast forward nearly 10 years later to First Lady Melania Trump. On the occasion of her move into the White House, the First Lady is finally sporting some more casual looks—but approachable they are not.
Returning from Camp David yesterday, Trump wore khaki colored jeans and a white denim button down—but she paired these with a white Celine Luggage Phantom bag (retail price is around $3,000) and Manolo Blahnik python sandals (retail is around $800).
Earlier in the weekend at Camp David, the First Lady donned a simple white shirt dress by Gabriela Hearst (retail is $1,795) paired with a Michael Kors belt and brown leather flats.
And on her first official day as a D.C inhabitant, she wore a laid-back ensemble of brown trousers and a white cotton tee—by designers Dolce & Gabbana and Bally respectively—paired with an Hermes Birkin bag (retail is around $10,000) and python Manolo Blahnik pumps.
While we’re always on board for a good designer moment, these more casual moments were a missed opportunity to show that this administration’s ever-increasing wealth need not always be flaunted.