Yesterday was full of memorable moments from President Obama taking his second oath of office at the inauguration to performances by Jennifer Hudson and Beyonce. One of the most awe-inspiring events for us was seeing President Obama and his wife, First Lady Michelle Obama, dance as Jennifer Hudson serenaded them with a sultry version of Al Green’s “Let’s Stay Together.” The First Couple was the picture of grace, elegance and class, and their love for one another was evident.

The icing on the cake was Michelle Obama’s exquisite Jason Wu gown. Though we could come up with countless reasons why we thought it was the perfect choice for such an extraordinary occasion, here are five:

1. It flattered her body.

Michelle Obama has the art of dressing for your body down to a science. Her custom Jason Wu gown flattered her arms and toned upper body.

2. A woman in red makes a powerful statement.

Mrs. O chose red for the inaugural ball which conveys power, confidence, strength, passion and boldness, all elements of her public image that should be celebrated.

3. The gown’s style was timeless yet modern.

Few things are as timeless as a classic red gown but FLOTUS’ Jason Wu dress had modern, trend-concious flourishes like velvet detailing and a sassy keyhole in the neckline.

4. She chose Jason Wu.

Mrs. Obama could’ve worn a more established, conservative and older designer but instead, she chose Jason Wu, a young American artisan who is full of promise and talent. Fun fact: he also designed the dress she wore at the inaugural ball in 2009.

5. It was decidedly elegant.

Naysayers took to Twitter to chide the First Lady for wearing such a “simple” gown but I’d argue that it was elegant and classic. Not only is it true to the adage that “less is more,” but it shows that she doesn’t feel the need to impress, but rather wears what she loves.

What did you think of her Jason Wu gown, Clutchettes?

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  • Kacey

    She looked beautiful and I’m glad that Jason Wu (and J. Crew) has enjoyed such a boost due to FOTUS’ patronage, but, DANG! Couldn’t she have chosen another designer? She has shown her power to ignite the careers of designers who are not widely known. This would have been a great opportunity to introduce us to some other talented designer. And…Dare I say it? Couldn’t she have chosen a black female designer? I know, they don’t owe black people anything…right?

    • Kacey


    • Liz

      You mean like when she wore Tracy Reese (double score on the minority meter) for her DNC speech?

    • Kacey

      That’s great, but I thought we were talking about the Inauguration here.

    • Liz

      well… both events only occur once every four years, and I don’t think anyone will be clamoring to get the Jason Wu dress like they were for the everyday, wearable Tracy Reese dress…so I’m not really sure what your point is.

      Is she supposed to wear black female designers for all of her public appearances? The suggestion is ludicrous, and honestly, she would be crucified (further) by the media for her decision to only patronize black designers. The first lady has always favored American designers and she’s used black designers like Kevan Hall and Tracy Reese among others, frequently. Your post reads like she doesn’t wear black designers or black female designers, and that’s just not the case.

    • Kacey

      @ LIZ: I really don’t get your point. You took one part of my entire statement and blew it up for your own purposes. You seem to have missed the part where I said that I wished she had used a designer not already known. But I see you’re trying to blow the “black people don’t have to support other black people” trumpet, so have at it! But I completely stand by my statement – all parts of it!

    • Liz

      …I didn’t say that at all. You made a veiled assertion that she should have used a black, female designer; I just reminded you that 1) she has and 2) using black designers or female designers or foreign designers or any kind of designer exclusively would be a bad move. You and I both know that. I have no purpose and no trumpet, I just stated the facts.

    • Wynter

      Which Black designers do you wear, Kacey? I’m just looking for some suggestions from your closet. I read that the First Lady is presented with several gowns, and she wears the one she likes best. Wow, that sounds like what I do when I go shopping.

    • Kacey

      I own a few Tracy Reese pieces and I have had custom-made dresses by a Ghanian seamstress in my area. I’m not in the fashion industry and, unfortunately, many black designers don’t get much exposure as I’d be sure to check them out and support if I can. I wish I had a fraction of the influence the first lady has, I would definitely seek-out more black designers to showcase.

    • Shirl

      If I could give you a hundred thumbs up I would.

    • IW

      Thank you!

    • NO she doesn’t…shockingly a black woman can wear what she wants and not have to feel obligated to be political or pro-black about her choices…I know that type of reasoning and action is mind blowing right! The first lady looks great and the dress suited her plain and simple plus she wore black designers clothing in the past and probably will in the future so let’s stop pretending she doesn’t acknowledge black designers or give them shine.

    • Liz

      thank you, Binks.

  • Melissa

    The First Lady knows what she likes and what looks good with her body. I guess she felt more comfortable with Jason Wu. Beautiful dress and she looks lovely!

  • AM

    Beautiful gown, va-va-voom color. She WORE that dress. I also happened to LOVE what Prof.Biden had on.

  • kc

    I like that she chose a dress designed by a person of color. I know a lot of black shudder at the term, but I think POC should stick together.

    • rando

      I don’t think it’s BLACKS that shudder at the grouping but other people of color who do not want to be considered in the same group as blacks. When was the last time Asians were rushing to patronage black establishments or support the black community? I’ll wait….beauty supply stores can wait.

      I like the gown but I am over her JCrew love & I wish she had chosen a different designer. The first gown Wu made for her was ugly IMO. This one is marginally better because of the color.

  • MommieDearest

    I like the gown. It’s figure-flattering and the color looks GREAT on her. This is a marked improvement over the 2009 gown, and it looks much better on camera.

    I had an opportunity to see the 2009 gown up close, and it looks better in person because there is gold detailing that does not show on camera. On TV, that gown looked like the bedspread that my grandmother used back in the day. However, even with the gold-detailing it still only looks marginally better in person.