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All Things Fashion DC | April 25, 2014

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Op-Ed: First Lady O, Overdressed?

Op-Ed: First Lady O, Overdressed?

By ATFDC Contributor Beth Beru

Michelle Obama has been a very vocal and involved First Lady these past four years. Between supporting her husband/ President Obama, raising two daughters and promoting her “let’s move” campaign she has had her hands full. As the jack of all trades, Lady O has kept up with her duties while creating a buzz on her fashion ensembles. Women across America look forward to the First Lady’s classic and elegant outfits. However not everyone is so impressed with her fashion. Author Elizabeth Cline has penned her first book entitled “Overdressed:The Shockingly High Cost of Cheap Fashion.” Cline expresses her frustration with the First Lady and the country’s obsession with her so-called    ”American” Style. Mrs. Obama is the spokesperson for everything she attacks in her book-factory manufactured, cheap quality and environmentally harmful apparel.

Lady O has been shot in her J.Crew or Target styled outfits to the approval of many Americans who appreciate a First Lady who shops at local stores with inexpensive clothing. While it’s difficult to admit because I love our First Lady, the work she does and her wardrobe collection, I can understand Cline’s frustration.  While several of the pieces worn by the First Lady are economically affordable , mass produced apparel does not offer the environment much help. Cline also made mention of the Duchess of Cambridge, Kate Middleton who is known for frequenting consignment shops and wearing the same outfit more than once. Cline argues that our philosophy on fashion and shopping in general has shifted where we are left idolizing the wrong people and making poor decisions.

I have to say after pondering Elizabeth’s argument, I think it’s imperative we help our First Lady become more environmentally friendly with her wardrobe selection. Let’s create a list of the hottest consignment stores where she can shop. While we appreciate her leaving the YSL and Chanel at home to step out in a H&M dress, we must recognize that there maybe better options for our First Lady to wear. We all make mistakes right, especially in fashion. So people of D.C., let’s help our First Lady out a bit.

Photo courtesy of Fashionista.com

In 2009, Bethlehem Beru began her quest to break into the fashion scene in D.C. She loves the eclectic style from both men and women of the District and is eager to showcase this city and all of its notable fashion sense. As a writer for All Things Fashion, Bethlehem is on a mission to expose all of the city’s secret treasures and creativity. If you’ve got it, she wants to write about it!

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