And now for the pictures you can pretty much find everywhere on the Web today! Michelle Obama … in Vogue!
And on Vogue — the cover, of course. Vogue “likey” money and the Obamas have proven they can pretty much sell any magazine from Ladies’ Home Journal to Newsweek. I’m surprised there isn’t some “Teen Beat” off-shoot, all-Obamas, all-the-time magazine yet, a la the mini mags you can get of various pop hearthrobs.
Also, fashion legend and Vogue Editor-At-Large Andre Leon Talley interviewed Michelle for the spread. She obviously did that voodoo that she “do” oh-so-well on Talley who went full-on First Lady crush all over her in his story.
Mrs. Obama has a hug—a sincere and friendly embrace—that has become familiar to countless supporters from coast to coast. And when she talks to you, she focuses all her calm attention on your face. For a passionate supporter like me (someone who, like millions of regular American citizens, volunteered in the campaign trenches and basked in the glow of glory at the Inauguration), being the focus of this reassuring gaze is akin to hearing a chord from John Coltrane’s “A Love Supreme.” Or maybe Ralph Vaughan Williams’s “The Lark Ascending”: All is well and right and real.
With her long, lean, athletic frame, she moves as if she could have danced with Alvin Ailey in another life. Curled up in the corner of a huge taupe velvet sofa, wearing knee-high boots as she nestles into the cushions, she almost seems like any other mom recently relocated to a city because of her husband’s new job.
Feel the Talley love! He goes on and on and admits that despite the love from Vogue — and Vogue’s love of haberdashery a la femme — Michelle is more than her clothes.
What Michelle Obama is less focused on—in direct inverse proportion to the focus of the public—is fashion. Which isn’t to say that she doesn’t appreciate good clothes. Or that the fashion choices of a woman whose image will shortly be—or already is—among the most recognizable in the entire world aren’t iconic. And thus far, those choices have been fearless. Every moment she sallies forth, she will be scrutinized, then alternately set on a pedestal or skewered. Which, thankfully, hasn’t put the brakes on her enthusiasm or originality—so markedly different from, but for an exception or two, previous presidential partners who shrank from matters of style or played it safe. Her self-possession is an inspiration. “I love clothes,” she admits. “First and foremost, I wear what I love. That’s what women have to focus on: what makes them happy and what makes them feel comfortable and beautiful. If I can have any impact, I want women to feel good about themselves and have fun with fashion.” …
I first met Mrs. Obama at an impromptu dinner at Oprah Winfrey’s house in Santa Barbara, California, on the eve of the divine Ms. O’s Legends Ball in 2005. I was seated between the then Senator Barack Obama’s wife and Tina Turner. Do I remember what Michelle was wearing? Not at all. What I do remember was how informed she was on so many topics. And when she said she actually knew who I was, I was so flattered my jaw dropped.
I like the two pictures I’ve seen so far from the eight-page spread, specially the one with her on the sofa, writing a note. I will probably be on the hunt for the other six pictures in the coming week. Overall, I think Michelle looks lovely, although the cover of the mag is a tad underwhelming. (Even though purple is obviously the First Lady’s power color.)
I realize Annie Leibovitz is a legend, (loved her pictures of David Beckham in a bullfighting ring for Vanity Fair a few years back and the more recent Walt Disney fairytales adverts) but that seriously could be the cover of just about any halfway decent women’s mag. Hell, Essence could have done one better.
Where’s your A-game, Annie?