May 24, 2017

"Michelle Obama proves there is a grown-up way to do the cold shoulder trend."

No, this is not an article about how — unlike Melania Trump* — Michelle Obama has a good way to keep her husband from touching her, it's about that not-dead-quite-yet fashion trend of wacky necklines that expose the shoulder.

And I have no idea why this particular blouse of Michelle's is supposed to look "grown-up" — or why children are getting blamed for what has always looked to me like just a last-ditch effort to find a new approach to baring female flesh. Okay, we did midriffs, we did lower back, we did ass cheeks, so... how about shoulders? Yes, let's break out the shoulders! Most women want to wear bras and most bras have shoulder straps, so it's at least a challenge of some sort, even if no one's too fixated on shoulders, but maybe they once were.

There was a 1931 movie "White Shoulders":



And not long after that, Evyan introduced White Shoulders perfume:
Actually it is probably the iconic American fragrance. Classified as a Floral Aldehyde, it is: beautiful, sweet, sexy, powdery, radiant, maternal, refined, approachable, fresh, gracious and warm but at [its] core — very "night"...



Anyway, sorry to veer over into all that whiteness. The correct answer — I think — to why the UK Telegraph article characterizes Michelle Obama as "proving" that the bared shoulder look can be worn in a "grown-up way" is simply that Michelle Obama is doing it. In syllogistic form: Whatever Michelle Obama does is grown up, Michelle Obama is wearing a "cold shoulder" garment, therefore it is possible to wear the "cold shoulder" look in a grown-up way.
____________________

* Twice, Melania has been shown on video seemingly rejecting Trump's effort to hold hands with her. She doesn't just let him (to coin a phrase — have you ever heard that phrase? I just came up with it!). And speaking of Melania, did you see that she (and Ivanka) wore a black veil on her head to meet the Pope? She didn't cover her head for the Muslims, but she covered her head for the Catholics? I'd say, she didn't cover her head for the political leaders in Saudi Arabia, but she did cover her head for the religious leader in the Vatican. As for the flicking away of her husband's hand, I'd defend her this way: He has expressive hands and instinctive affection, but she is a model, more concerned with appearances and focused on walking with professional elegance in high heels and not getting thrown off balance. There's a bit of a conflict there, and the subtle flick of the wrist would normally go unnoticed, and it would work just fine. But a million eyes are scanning each microsecond of video, and the tiniest gestures will be detected and magnified. And if they want to use you to show that your husband is hateful, they will find whatever they can. Just as anything Michelle Obama does can count as how to be a "grown up" — or whatever the hell — anything Melania does might count as evidence that Trump is loathsome.

138 comments:

Earnest Prole said...

I'd defend her this way: Her husband is skeezy.

David Begley said...

Althouse's footnote should be page one of the NYT. Since that will never happen, maybe Rush will reference it. Better yet: Tucker Carlson.

tcrosse said...

Even the President of the United States can be in the doghouse.

I Have Misplaced My Pants said...

She looks so awful in that getup.

Kevin said...

Any article painting Michelle in other than the most exquisite light of any human to walk the planet would immediately be called out as racist.

Such is the society which Trump is trying to Make Great Again.

Kevin said...

I remember when Hillary wouldn't hold Bill's hand and Chelsea had to stand between them. The press didn't make a big deal about it.

Yancey Ward said...

This is really asking for a Laslo contribution.

Bad Lieutenant said...

immediately be called out as racist.

I denounce myself in advance, but eppur si muove, er, that top looks sloppy.

Too bad no strikeout html works here. Or blockquotes, but I loves me some strikeout.

Bad Lieutenant said...

Yancey Ward said...
This is really asking for a Laslo contribution.

5/24/17, 11:05 AM

Objectively, if not consciously, Ann prefers the stylings of TTR and PBJ to those of Laslo.

Michael K said...

The outfit that Michelle is wearing would be OK for the beach but a cathedral ?

Inga said...

I think she looks great in this pink blouse, sexy. I'd wear that blouse if I was her age. Each to their own style.

"She looks so awful in that getup."
Yes I agree with you here. The white blouse wth the lacings are not flattering and are over the top. Maybe she's spreading her wings with how she's dressing now after all the years of being First Lady, but the white blouse was a fail.


Seeing Red said...

80s are back!

Let's hope that includes the stock market!

Ann Althouse said...

"She looks so awful in that getup."

Oh, no! That's even worse. It looks ready to fall off.

Thanks for the link. The Daily Mail is so poorly edited, but some of the mistakes are hilarious. From your link: "While Barack waved at the crowd and smiled at his adoring supporters, Michelle briefly salted the fans, then kept her head demurely bowed, adopting a more reserved attitude than the outgoing demeanor she typically displayed as First Lady."

Salted the fans?!

Saluted, I guess.

M Jordan said...

It's fun to see how sophisticated, heavly nuanced, irony-loving liberals have become the exact mirror image of the hillbillies and fundamentalists they hate. They're 100% tribal, they are self-blinded, they are repressive neo-Puritans. Actually, liberals are worse, much worse, than the cartoon characters they think the right to be for they are hypocrites whereas the redneck is authentic.

I sometimes think the cost is so low to join that crowd -- utter the right phrases, put on the right bumper stickers -- and the benefits quite high -- be immune from the charge of racism -- that I should join the tribe. Alas, I cannot. I was born an outsider, I live an outsider, and I will die an outsider to this group. But at least I can see that Melania Trump is prettier than Michelle Obama. That's worth something.

Ann Althouse said...

"Any article painting Michelle in other than the most exquisite light of any human to walk the planet would immediately be called out as racist."

And yet, the straining to praise her actually does evince racism. Why the use of the word "grown-up" in the article I cited? I think it's evidence that the writer has a stereotype against black people — that they are like children — and is overcompensating.

PuertoRicoSpaceport.com said...

I could care less about her bared shoulders. It is where she did it that shows her up as no-class scum.

That kind of outfit in a a cathedral? Where is this respect for all religions that her husband used to talk about? Ex-President Obama was dressed appropriately, if a bit casually.

To get bacl to a discussion we had the other day about headware and respect: Ivanka and Melania did not wear head scarves in Saudi Arabia. About which I have mixed feelings as I explained in a previous post.

President Trump DID wear a Yarmulke in Israel.

Melania and Ivanka DID wear veils when the met with the Pope. Not Islamic styles veils, from the pics I might not have even noticed them. But they did wear them.

It is all about respecting other religions. Doesn't matter whether you are a member, believe in them or even agree with them. It is simple, common, courtesy.

John Henry

pacwest said...

Another nothing burger. The calorie count is pretty low but the taste is simply delicious if your taste buds are working on the left side of your tounge.

And the Obamas are in that part of the world why?

Ann Althouse said...

"I think she looks great in this pink blouse, sexy."

Well, considering that the blouse is not pink — it's a pastel purple/violet — I have to question your discernment.

Darcy said...

Oh, ugh! Michelle O has atrocious style. Like someone dragged her away from weeding her garden. Pretty lady, and somewhat fit, but she doesn't seem to know how to dress for her body style. She has bought into the idea that her arms are awesome.

Btw, Melania and Ivanka finally had a fashion fail as well - the getups to meet with the Pope. Hideous. Creepy weird. Wow.

M Jordan said...

On the menu at the Shill Cafe today:

1 heavily salted Nothingburger
2 Obamlettes
Side of Bull Slaw

Price: Free, as always

Michael K said...

" the straining to praise her actually does evince racism."

The continuation of affirmative action, long after it served the original purpose is obvious evidence of the racism of the left.

As is the rage directed at black conservatives, like Clarence Thomas and, more recently, Sheriff Clarke.

Ann Althouse said...

"Melania and Ivanka DID wear veils when the met with the Pope. Not Islamic styles veils, from the pics I might not have even noticed them. But they did wear them."

They veils they choose are the traditional Catholic style called a mantilla. They wore the traditional veil of the place in the Vatican but not in Riyadh.

rhhardin said...

Weeding, wedding, it's all good.

Ann Althouse said...

I thought the veil made a very noticeable difference in Melania's looks. She has such a severe facial expression. Without the golden, flowing hair softening her looks, she seems very matronly, very dominant. That and the hand-flicking made me wonder what goes on in private between those two.

Rob said...

Michelle has been spending too much time around Oprah. She's starting to look like her.

Inga said...

"The outfit that Michelle is wearing would be OK for the beach but a cathedral ?"

Was she visiting a cathedral?

"Wearing an oversized one-shouldered blouse by Finnish label Teija, the former First Lady was dining al fresco with friends in Montalcino and her look felt simultaneously classic and cool."
______________

"And yet, the straining to praise her actually does evince racism. Why the use of the word "grown-up" in the article I cited? I think it's evidence that the writer has a stereotype against black people — that they are like children — and is overcompensating."

I think the reference to the blouse being "grown up" had to do with it being pink and gathered, like a little girls dress and had nothing to do with her being black.

JohnAnnArbor said...

They veils they choose are the traditional Catholic style called a mantilla. They wore the traditional veil of the place in the Vatican but not in Riyadh.

Your point in the post about political vs. religious venue is on-point; I bet they'd wear a nice hair covering for a Saudi mosque tour.

Matthew Sablan said...

Isn't Melania Catholic? I thought she was, which might be why she's more willing to bend to Catholic tradition than Muslim.

Kevin said...

Why the use of the word "grown-up" in the article I cited? I think it's evidence that the writer has a stereotype against black people — that they are like children — and is overcompensating.

I hadn't considered it in the Biden context.

"I mean, you got the first mainstream African-American who is articulate and bright and clean and a nice-looking guy," Biden said.

I'm so used to the Democrats I am surrounded by referring to themselves as "the grown-up party". As in those who are not Democrats are children who need not be listened to by "the grown-ups". So my first thought was they were again slipping that phrase in wherever they could, even if it unwittingly was racist in its use.

So go the modern Dems, using racism to denounce racism and feeling very good about themselves for doing so.

Matthew Sablan said...

"And the Obamas are in that part of the world why?"

-- They're private citizens, and whatever you think of his presidency, after 8 years, he can go vacation wherever he wants.

Inga said...

"I think she looks great in this pink blouse, sexy."

"Well, considering that the blouse is not pink — it's a pastel purple/violet — I have to question your discernment."

Hmmm, maybe I'm losing some of the rods and cones in my eyes as I age. But hey, I still have my sense of smell and taste!

Freeman Hunt said...

I vaguely recall too often mention of Dagny's shoulders in Atlas Shrugged, too often to the point of comedy. Ain't nobody's shoulders that interesting, lady.

Livermoron said...

Ms. Obama's top is ugly. I understand that she wore this visiting holy sights in Rome. If so, this is an affront; there is a cottage industry in Rome of selling scarves to women who wish to enter those sites but who made the error of wearing an outfit that exposes the arms and/or the shoulder, thus prohibiting their entrance. The scarves cover the offending skin. Perhaps the rules were bent for her or she acquired a scarf....
And calling a fashion choice of juvenile girls 'grown-up' is certainly an act of racism...just like stating that Blacks are incapable of acquiring a photo ID is.

Snark said...

I wondered if Melania seeming to reject her husband's hand was related to when he seemed to do that very publicly to her when they were arriving in Florida not long after he took office. It seemed apparent by her expression that it was hurtful and embarrassing for her. It was several months ago, but something like that can linger for a while for a spouse.

Also, honestly, I'm not sure I would want to walk down stairs holding on to Donald Trump either. Ha ha!

Matthew Sablan said...

I wonder when we'll reach the point that G&S's line "My right elbow has a fascination that few can resist," is no longer comedic. Shoulders, elbows, knees and toes.

Expat(ish) said...

I think there are some people who don't like to hold hands - like my grandmother. She just didn't.

I also think there are people with sweaty palms (my Aunt Serita, ugh) who are otherwise wonderful, but no, 10X no hand holding.

But I knew those old ladies loved me and I loved them right back.

I've been married a long time, and I admit, that my wife and I don't hold hands very often anymore - just broke the habit while we had young kids and, I guess, never got it back.

TL;DR - not sure what not holding hands means.

-XC

EDH said...

My only question is to what extent Obama is out of the country to disassociate himself from the coordinated Deep State efforts of his minions to undermine Trump?

"Look: shoulders! Obama must be above the fray."

Dust Bunny Queen said...

1. The veils are actually not veils, they are a head covering or Mantilla in Latin countries.

2. They are wearing the head coverings while meeting the supreme religious head of the Catholic church...showing respect for the religion.

3. IF...they were meeting in a religious setting in muslim land with a religious leader, I would imagine they would show the proper respect for that religious setting...as opposed to being forced to coverup yourself 24/7 in general public circumstances.

4. I believe that Melania is or was raised Catholic, so she probably would have been raised to wear a head covering.

Hand holding. Hell NO....I don't want someone to hold my hand when I'm walking down some steep stairs and while wearing those (ridiculous) high heels. One or the other of them could take a tumble and both she and Trump could go ass over tea kettle down the stairs.

Inga said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Snark said...

"Hmmm, maybe I'm losing some of the rods and cones in my eyes as I age. But hey, I still have my sense of smell and taste!"

The blouse looks pink on my PC, and more of a pastel purple on my iPad. Different devices are going to render colours differently, so don't give up on your cones yet.

Jay Elink said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Inga said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Dust Bunny Queen said...

Michelle's blouse is a shade of pastel magenta. A combination of pink, purple and lightened with white.

See we CAN all disagree without being disagreeable. :-D

Inga said...

She was wearing the white blouse while they were visiting cathedrals in Sienna, yes that is not appropriate. Even the pink, oops I mean pastel purple/violet blouse would be inappropriate for visiting cathedrals, however I love the pastel purple violet blouse for just visiting any other site on a warm day.

"The blouse looks pink on my PC, and more of a pastel purple on my iPad. Different devices are going to render colours differently, so don't give up on your cones yet."

Phew! Good, thanks that did give me a scare. I use color every day in my drawings and various art projects. I'd hate to lose my ability to see color. I'd hate losing my sense of smell and taste too, but not seeing color would be worse.

Amadeus 48 said...

"I vaguely recall too often mention of Dagny's shoulders in Atlas Shrugged, too often to the point of comedy. Ain't nobody's shoulders that interesting, lady."

Damn! You just gave Althouse another reason not to read it.

khesanh0802 said...

I'll pull a Tom and Lorenzo here and say that Michelle should never wear light color slacks and the the off the shoulder look barely makes it on teenagers, certainly doesn't do much for a ruggedlly-built woman.

SayAahh said...

Given Trump is on record of where is hands have been, I find it difficult to criticize her.

Yancey Ward said...

The religion distinction is spot on- I can just about guarantee you that both women would adhere to the religious rules on clothing at any mosque or church- it is good manners to do so. That is definitely the reason for the lack of a head covering in Riyadh when meeting with Saudi rulers vs otherwise.

As for the hand-holding- I would never hold someone's hand walking down steps unless they literally needed me to for their own balance and safety, and then I wouldn't be just holding their hand, but their upper arm as well. I can imagine walking in heels is also problematic for hand-holding in a similar way- I would just want my arms completely free of encumbrances in situations where falling is always a realistic possibility.

CStanley said...

The blouse is pink:
Reinterpreting traditional shirting is what Teija does best, as shown with this pink and white striped cotton-poplin top.

Birches said...

She does not look good like that. Wow. Frumpy is the word I would use. Unless you are built like Melania, you should not be wearing either of those tops.

And on the hand holding issue. I found it amusing; it seems to be the actions of people that have been married awhile.

Jay Elink said...

I joined a long line to go into Paris's Notre Paris a month ago, and many of the women were in shorts and the like, and no one wore veils. Men were asked to remove their baseball caps before going inside. Women weren't asked to put on headcoverings.

So....at least there, the Church has decided to lighten up on the veil thing. Bad for tourism....

Also, there's still a "White Shoulders" line of cosmetics.

Boxty said...

I'm not sure if the Bible says anything about hand holding, but it says the veil is a symbol of the authority that man has over his wife. It's in "One Corinthians" as Trump would say.

roesch/voltaire said...

Really Melania couldn't keep her balance if she held Trump's hand? I guess she is not the model wife then.

Angel-Dyne said...

That blouse, that outfit. The sort of awkward turn-out worn by girls in their teens and early twenties who haven't figured out what works for them, whose personal style is still fluid and developing.

Michelle Obama has often triggered my inner "concerned personal stylist": she could have a very striking personal style, but she doesn't seem to know who she is. Occasionally she gets it right - I've seen photos to which I respond, "Hey, thumbs up, Michelle. That looks good!". But usually she comes across as someone very uncomfortable, in clothes that don't suit her body type or her personality. (She always has that uncomfortable air of someone wearing that bridesmaid dress that was chosen by someone else, with neither her looks nor tastes in mind.) Physically, I can see her really carrying off the refined end of the "grand" or "diva" spectrum, but her public personality is not comparably confident and expansive.

As for the "cold shoulder" - "grown-up"? Nobody over the age of 22 should be wearing an outfit like that, and that judgment has nothing to do with what, or how much, flesh is being bared. That's a "mall teen shop" outfit, for heaven's sake.

madAsHell said...

It's advertising marauding as a news article. They're aiming at the scorned, bitter woman that wants to freshen her wardrobe for the spring.

Yancey Ward said...

Balance is always easier with your arms free. I am reluctant to even hold hands when walking on a flat surface because my partner almost never matches my stride cadence. Two people never quite really stride and move their arms in synchronicity. Hand holding, in my opinion, is done while seated or otherwise motionless positions.

Birches said...

I just clicked over to the picture, Pants. It's worse than I imagined. That top does not look frumpy as the other one does, but low class. The pants are also all wrong too. Ugh. It's just bad, bad, bad.

If she were white, with bleached out hair and walking around a Walmart, she'd soon be featured in a People of Walmart post. But since the top was likely $500 it's fashion, I guess...

CStanley said...

I thought Althouse's interpretation of Melanie's hand flick was spot on, but then was puzzled by her comment below the fold about wondering what goes on between them. If she was signaling no hand holding because it would put her off balance (which was how I viewed it) then why does that reveal anything about their relationship (except perhaps that she's normal and not overly subservient to his demands?)

One of the links clicked through to a photo montage of the Trumps through the years which I found enjoyable, but there was a noticeable difference in their expressions indicating happier times during their courtship and early marriage. Who knows....that change is likely true to some extent of all couples as the glow wears off, and Melanie's severe facial expressions may make it seem more pronounced than it really is. I also find that Melanie really seems uncomfortable with the world of politics and seems very stiff most of the time now.

On another tangent, I feel the Obama's body language has been looking very chilly for quite a while now and nothing in these pictures makes me think otherwise. It's only notable to me because I find it sad (they seemed like a happy couple when they first arrived on the national scene, and I've always hoped for the sake of their daughters that they were and would remain so.) Another reason I note this is that there is zero probability that the press would analyze or report negatively on the Obama's marriage, while every minute gesture and expression of Melanie is analyzed for negative affect.

William said...

Outside of skinny teenagers, I've never seen anyone wear a yarmulke in a cool way.

Inga said...

"As for the "cold shoulder" - "grown-up"? Nobody over the age of 22 should be wearing an outfit like that, and that judgment has nothing to do with what, or how much, flesh is being bared. That's a "mall teen shop" outfit, for heaven's sake."

I'm quite sure Ivanka would look terrific in the cold shoulder style and carry it off beautifully. She in her 30's I believe. Michelle and Ivanka certainly are still young and why ever should they adopt a matronly look? Some women age before their time and certainly they should stick to less revealing or sexy styles.

Sydney said...

Probably didn't endear themselves to this pope with the traditional mantilla. He's not much for tradition.

exiledonmainstreet said...

I just don't like the top. It looks like someone just hacked the sleeve off. And the white one in the photo Pants linked to - she has far too sturdy a build to carry off anything with ruffles. It makes her look big around the waist.

Michele can look good - I remember the royal blue dress she wore at the '12 convention and she was quite striking, but she should stick to jewel tones and simple designs. Pastels don't suit her.

Birches said...

Btw, Melania and Ivanka finally had a fashion fail as well - the getups to meet with the Pope. Hideous. Creepy weird. Wow.

I thought they looked very pious in an Italian sort of way. Not my cup of tea, but it seems to fit in with Catholic culture.

Yancey Ward said...

As for Michelle Obama, well not everyone has a very refined sense of style- beautiful or not (really, you can observe this fact at any gathering of young nubile Hollywood starlets). I know I have literally zero personal fashion sense, but I don't agonize over it and I don't hold it against other people.

William said...

Melania is a supermodel. Michelle is a reasonably attractive middle aged woman. I'm not sure, but I think you have to judge the fashion choices of these women on a curve. I'm entititled to throw a wobbly but not Tom Brady........I thought Melania looked striking and dramatic in the pictures, but less so with that veil thingy. Does she get bonus demerits for not choosing the most photogenic mantilla? Michelle looked klutzy in that outfit, but she's not paid to look dramatic and striking.

Birches said...

I also find that Melania really seems uncomfortable with the world of politics and seems very stiff most of the time now.

I think this is the source of most of Melania's severe look. I don't blame her. I think the reaction to her convention speech really hurt personally.

Known Unknown said...

"Also, honestly, I'm not sure I would want to walk down stairs holding on to Donald Trump either. Ha ha!"

Well, if you fell, he could cushion the fall.

richlb said...

Isn't the term "White Shoulders" racist? The shoulders are bare, and the flesh is white, marginalizing the skin of other, more darkly complexioned women.

Known Unknown said...

I think Michelle's problem is more the faux cargo pants thing she has on. They're even high-waisted, which, frankly doesn't do Michelle's body type any favors.

exiledonmainstreet said...

Melania could probably look chic in a potato sack. Models make big bucks because they can project all sorts of different personae from sexy vamp to girl next door. Tall, thin women can pull off any number of different styles.

But most of us are not so blessed and we have to work with the limitations we have - which in Michele's case include overly broad shoulders and a middle which can look thick if she doesn't wear the right styles.

Christy said...

I still have a Christmas gift card for a local boutique. Everything I've found in my colors have those open shoulders which I've rejected as too young and giggly. Seriously. Every top and dress in the store has open shoulders. (BTW, Juan Williams mocked those open shoulders on The Five at Five weeks ago. As a the-Obamas-can-do-no-wrong sort of fellow, I wonder what he would say in response to Althouse's post.)

Amadeus 48 said...

The British press is great at telling you things in their headlines that their photojournalism immediately contradicts. This is not grown-up and it does not look good. On the other hand, the Obamas are on holiday in Europe. Let's give them a break even when they look terrible.

Angel-Dyne said...

Inga: I'm quite sure Ivanka would look terrific in the cold shoulder style and carry it off beautifully.

I said "that outfit" not "all bare shoulders".

She in her 30's I believe. Michelle and Ivanka certainly are still young and why ever should they adopt a matronly look?

I hope you don't believe that our only choice is between "matronly" and "dressing like a teenager" when it comes to clothes. (What is it with some women who immediately interpret "that outfit is too young for you/her" as an assertion that one should dress like a sexless frump?)

Both Ivanka and Mrs. Obama would look lovely and elegant in many outfits with bared shoulders. But the outfit that the latter is wearing in the photo is tacky, unflattering, and too young for her.

pacwest said...

"They're private citizens, and whatever you think of his presidency, after 8 years, he can go vacation wherever he wants."

He certainly can. It's a small world and coincidences happen all the time.

wendybar said...

Yes, Michelle wore that stripper like shirt to a Cathedral...Classless.http://www.mediaite.com/online/the-trumps-arent-the-only-presidential-couple-in-italy-obamas-turn-heads-in-siena/

wendybar said...

And Tacky to boot!

Limited blogger said...

When I was growing up women all wore hats to Catholic mass. Then it gave way to veils or scarves, finally no heard wear seemed required.

Don't know if Vatican II changed things?

But anyway, they should have done without the headdresses.

Angel-Dyne said...

P.S.: There are also sophisticated, elegant, skin-baring outfits that are too old for a woman in her teens or twenties. "Age appropriate" is not a synonym for "frumpy" or "matronly".

exiledonmainstreet said...

Those mantillas look awful. I've seen more flattering ones at Sunday Latin masses - and that's the only place you see Catholic women wearing them outside of the Vatican. The traditionalist church I went to offered me one when I came in through the door. I demurred because the ones they had in stock all looked like big doilies.

I was not the only woman there without a mantilla but I was the only one who was wearing pants instead of a dress or skirt.

Dust Bunny Queen said...

As much as we (hubby and I) would like to hold hands....it isn't really very comfortable or even possible with one of his hands.

Viking's Disease (Dupuytren's contracture). Image #3 is basically my husband's right hand.

Genetic ....thanks Vikings, Scots, Irish heritage. :-(

readering said...

Melania was a model, not a supermodel. One thing to wear a veil in a building, another to wear a scarf/veil for an entire country.

Not favoring Michelle's garb if she was planning to enter the Cathedral. Should have had a wrap or jacket or something.

I want to know more about Ivanka's hat for the Western Wall.

Dust Bunny Queen said...

I remember the royal blue dress she wore at the '12 convention and she was quite striking, but she should stick to jewel tones and simple designs. Pastels don't suit her.

@ Exiled....

Me too. Michelle can be quite striking in the right clothing. She is a winter in the skin tone palette Winters should wear colors that are sharp, stark and clear. They look best in intense, rich colors, like white, black, navy blue, red, and hot pink.

Simple lines, clean cuts and avoid the ruffles!! She also has an unfortunately shaped derriere. Bottom heavy. Or too much junk in the trunk to be wearing tight fitting pants.

Inga said...

I do think that women are too hard on each other's personal styles. Unless it's completely outlandish I'm willing to mix it up with styles that might be age appropriate, but still adds some element of fun. In my forties I would've worn that pink cold shoulder blouse and pulled it off. In my sixties it would be ridiculous.

Bill said...

Perhaps it would behoove us to examine Michelle Obama's shoulder-baring intersectionally.

Angel-Dyne said...

Jay Elink: I joined a long line to go into Paris's Notre Paris a month ago, and many of the women were in shorts and the like, and no one wore veils. Men were asked to remove their baseball caps before going inside. Women weren't asked to put on headcoverings.

So....at least there, the Church has decided to lighten up on the veil thing. Bad for tourism....


It's been forty+ years since any Catholic Church I've been in required women to cover their heads.

Bad Lieutenant said...

Inga said...
"As for the "cold shoulder" - "grown-up"? Nobody over the age of 22 should be wearing an outfit like that, and that judgment has nothing to do with what, or how much, flesh is being bared. That's a "mall teen shop" outfit, for heaven's sake."

I'm quite sure Ivanka would look terrific in the cold shoulder style and carry it off beautifully. She in her 30's I believe. Michelle and Ivanka certainly are still young and why ever should they adopt a matronly look? Some women age before their time and certainly they should stick to less revealing or sexy styles.

5/24/17, 12:05 PM


Inga, I want to make it a point to give you credit for cruelly neutral, honest fairness on this thread.

I would do the same for Chuck if he ever rose to your level.

Inga said...

Oh wow. I just saw the outfits Melania and Ivanka wore to see the Pope. Is it some rule that women must be in black to see the pope? They looked like they were going to a funeral. Usually both women are very well dressed and elegant. How odd.

hombre said...

From the article: "But, as Michelle Obama proved over the weekend when on holiday in Italy, the off-shoulder top isn’t just for teenagers and trend addicts."

Seriously? Well, she's not a teenager.

Also, if the tarmac interaction had been the Obamas, the leftmediaswine would have dubbed it "a low five."

Inga said...

Thanks Bad L.

Unknown said...

Did Mrs Obama, acting very grown up by violating the cathedral's rules, think she was taking a cue from Mrs Trump, who didn't wear a headscarf in Saudi Arabia? Was this her way of keeping up with the Trumps?

exiledonmainstreet said...

Inga, it's the usual protocol to wear a black dress and a mantilla.

See other First Ladies:

http://eastwingrules.blogspot.com/2009/07/first-ladies-meeting-pope.html

readering said...

Great link!

Ann Althouse said...

Read the article. Black is the rule, but there is white privilege for some.

Ann Althouse said...

"Only a handful of Queens and Princesses from Catholic regions are permitted to wear white, according to the traditional "privilège du blanc" or “privilege of the white” rule. When Princess Charlene of Monaco met Pope Francis last January, for example, she exercised the privilege, wearing a chic crepe jacket and white driving gloves with her white mantilla and nude heels."

n.n said...

Apparently, Western women are neither required nor expected to cover their heads in Saudi Arabia. However, both Saudi Arabia and the Catholic Church expect women to dress modestly as appropriate to a situation. They have similar, gender-specific rules for men.

Peggy Coffey said...

Just do a little Google group and you will see it us tradition to wear black and a headcovering for an audience with the pope. Michelle Obama wore a hideous black sack and veil when she visited, at least MelAnia and Ivanka looked like human women.

Sigivald said...

Anyone who thinks exposed shoulders are "new" needs to watch more period pieces.

(I'm not even sure about the last time they were even unpopular...)

Inga said...

Very interesting! I had no idea women needed to wear black whenmeeting the Pope. Here is Princess Charlene of Monoco wearing all white and the reason why she was allowed to.

The privilege of wearing white to meet the Pope.

"Called le privil ge du blanc in French or il privilegio del biacno in Italian, the special tradition is extended solely to designated Catholic queens and princesses and is usually reserved for important events at the Vatican like private audiences, canonizations, beatifications and special masses. According to protocol, other women who meet with the pope are asked to wear black clothes and a matching mantilla, or a lace veil worn over the head. First Lady Michelle Obama followed this rule in 2009 when she joined President Barack Obama in visiting Pope Benedict XVI."

Inga said...

Oops sorry Althouse, I didn't see your comment before posting mine.

Kevin said...

Inga, I want to make it a point to give you credit for cruelly neutral, honest fairness on this thread.

I think we could all tell from her profile picture she takes fashion seriously.

Inga said...

"Inga, I want to make it a point to give you credit for cruelly neutral, honest fairness on this thread."

"I think we could all tell from her profile picture she takes fashion seriously."

Oh meow, don't be catty.

Birches said...

Re: the article on The Vatican dress code. Of course Camilla didn't follow protocol.

Unknown said...

"She [Mrs Trump} didn't cover her head for the Muslims, but she covered her head for the Catholics?"

Yet Mrs Obama covered her head for the Muslims, and bared her shoulders for the Catholics.

exiledonmainstreet said...

I'm Catholic and after seeing what some Catholics think is appropriate to wear to church and what I saw tourists wear in cathedrals in Europe, I can't get too upset about Michele. I don't like the outfit, but she was sightseeing. It's not like she wore that outfit when she was in a official capacity and visiting the Vatican.

William Chadwick said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
William Chadwick said...

More trendy than the Cold Shoulder look (based on what I see young women wearing these days) is the very interesting Bare Hiney look. It doesn't literally involve women baring their hineys, but a woman wearing very short shorts covered by a shirt-tail so that the illusion is given that the woman is pantsless. Enough fooling around, ladies! Dare to go pantsless!


traditionalguy said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
traditionalguy said...

Pope, Smope. The Jesuit politician from Argentina faking a spiritual Catholic while he is promoting nothing but the secular interests the German Empire (a/k/a the European Union) run by Germans is a joke. He is only there as a player in Obama's Great CO2 for Cash scam. So he has no respect coming as a religious leader. None. He's not even a very good actor playing the part.

And DJT keeps confronting them all with reality.

Inga said...

"She [Mrs Trump} didn't cover her head for the Muslims, but she covered her head for the Catholics?"

"Yet Mrs Obama covered her head for the Muslims, and bared her shoulders for the Catholics."

Michelle Obama and daughter forgo head scarves in Saudi Arabia. Trump slams her for it. Melania and Ivanka also forgo the head scarf in Saudi Arabia. Tump remains silent.

Inga said...

"Pope, Smope. The Jesuit politician from Argentina faking a spiritual Catholic....

And DJT keeps confronting them all with reality."

I bet he gave that old Popie Head a real wake up call. You bet!

madAsHell said...

Does she get bonus demerits for not choosing the most photogenic mantilla?

That crossed my mind as well, but I think you misspelled bonus merits!!

MadisonMan said...

I think the pastel rose/magenta color is a nice color for Michelle. That white shirt and high-waisted pants are hideous. They would be on anyone.

Brando said...

I don't think the flicking of Trump's hand made him look bad, I actually felt sorry for him--she should have just taken his hand, if only for a moment. She knows as well as anyone that cameras are on them at all times, and even if she didn't feel like holding hands, you don't reject a gesture like that.

When Ted Cruz's daughter refused to kiss him, we could write that off as a little kid not knowing better. But Melania is a grown woman, and one who is accustomed to the spotlight (she was a model, after all). Play nice in public!

cf said...

Oof. sorry, but the former flotus looks pretty awful in both tops. Look again at this pic of her in the white one.

http://i.dailymail.co.uk/i/pix/2017/05/22/22/40AD994A00000578-4531602-Flirty_The_former_First_Lady_was_snapped_from_all_angles_by_eage-a-30_1495489030776.jpg

the caption says it is "flirty" but to me this looks like some poor abused woman that just got sold into modern-day slavery. Obama is delivering her to the buyer. since they had to check out her titties before they bought, she is a bit undone here, and is in shock enough she doesn't even pull up her dang straps to get comfortable.

yikes.

"flirty?" we will need 32 years of detox to heal from the giddy poison our overseers have pressed into our minds this decade.

madAsHell said...

I see that Michelle Obama is wearing jeans with holes at the knees. Is she wearing white Spanx?

Achilles said...

Michele and Barack are always classy together.

No shoulder in this youtube though. Could you imagine what would happen if Trump was getting on with a female head of state like this and Melania did what Michele did? She made Barack SWITCH SEATS.

If leftists didn't have double standards they would have no standards at all.

Kevin said...

Oh meow, don't be catty.

In the spirit of dialing down the hostility and finding common ground, I just sincerely complimented you on your picture yesterday.

As far as cat costumes go, I think this one shows superior taste.

Kevin said...

As far as cat costumes go, I think this one shows superior taste.

Although in the spirit of not catjacking this thread, I must admit I can't tell whether it bares any shoulder.

madAsHell said...

Is she wearing white Spanx?

Yeah, I think those are white Spanx. She must be going for the Oreo cookie look.

exiledonmainstreet said...

This is the best cat hat ever. Unfortunately, the other cat in the video vehemently disagrees.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2mNB_VG_shc

madAsHell said...

What do you think: single, or double-stuffed?

Amy Welborn said...

Italian churches tend to be pretty strict about attire. I really don't think an non-Michelle Obama visitor to Siena's duomo would be allowed to enter with bare shoulders. As another commenter said, some have attendants at the ready with shawls and scarves (that happened to me in a church in Sicily - I was wearing a longer skirt..but a sleeveless top. "Senora!" the attendant hissed as she handed me a black shawl. My daughter, who is usually at the receiving end of my modesty speeches, was ecstatic that it was my turn...).

Last summer in Florence, we were in a church (not the duomo, or cathedral) and they had plastic rain ponchos they were handing out to those considered insufficiently covered...

Cacimbo Cacimbo said...

Pink shirt ugly, white shirt nice but uncomfortable looking.
Not a Michele fan, but have to admit she looks 20 times better 2017 than she did 2007. Whoever did work on her face/hair has done a fabulous job. No dramatic obvious change but overall a huge improvement.

Comanche Voter said...

Two days in the newspapers. Two days of Michelle in an "off the shoulder" blouse.
The look is sorta hooker--like she just got up off a warm bed in a hot sheet motel and threw something on.

Michael McClain said...

Why must we be continued to be cursed with these people?

khesanh0802 said...

I always thought that Michelle looked super when she dressed formally. She really doesn't have the body for the waif look. Very few women do, but the the number that try is baffling.

John said...

Blogger Ann Althouse said...

They veils they choose are the traditional Catholic style called a mantilla. They wore the traditional veil of the place in the Vatican but not in Riyadh.

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-4536884/Melania-Ivanka-wear-black-veils-meet-Pope.html

The article that was at the top of drudge earlier and which I can't find now said "veil" This article in the Daily Mail says

"The veil, or mantilla, is traditionally worn by women as a sign of respect when meeting the Pope."

Confirmed by my wife, in Spanish, the word for veil or vela means something quite different from mantilla. A mantilla goes over the hair and is crocheted or knitted or woven but not something you can really see through. Though it does have holes.

The veil, is a gauzy thing to be worn over the face and is more of less transparent.

In the picture at the link, which I think is the same as on Drudge (at least very similar) Ivanka is clearly wearing a veil, though not over her face. I do not see the mantilla.

Melania, looks to be wearing a mantilla but is also clearly wearing a veil. Also pushed back and not over her face.

My wife looked at the picture and says I am correct.

Oh, how low I have sunk to be arguing women's fashion with Ann Althouse herself.

Mantilla/veil not that big a deal but they DID wear appropriate headgear and dressed appropriately. As opposed to La Obama who just looked classlessly sloppy. The only good thing I can think of is that at least she didn't go into a cathedral wearing shorts.

Whether she likes it or not, she is a former first lady. She owes it to us to act the part.

John Henry

MikeD said...

BTW! The Obama's are in Europe trying to upstage the President. He's even got a big panel thingy scheduled with Frau Merkel.

Ray said...

I wanted to also give kudos to Inga in this thread, she added a lot of value to it with her observations.

For Michelle's style, she seems to be more of an everyday American Mom style. The only exception I remember was the 2012 inauguration where the dress she wore was A+. She strikes me as basically somebody who shops and dresses via Target and J Crew, and that is whom she is. Trying to put her on a pedestal as a trend setter just does not work for me.

Melania was a fashion model, and it shows in her style. It's a shame the TDS that infects the fashion world, because she has so much to offer them. She is the most truly fashionable First Lady going back to Jackie Kennedy.

I had a hard time with the picture of the Trump family at the Vatican seeing the style of the dresses. The lighting did not produce enough contrast (a common headache of pictures of dresses all the same color). I noticed Donald Trump wore a black tie, and his son in law a light blue tie. Melania had a very severe look in her dress and face, and her Husband was smiling. What an interesting contrast.

Ivana's dress was a bit more of the stylish little black dress of Audrey Hepburn fame, but with longer sleeves to make it more appropriate. Melania's had an Eastern European flavor / style that showed less skin around the neck.

The photo I saw of Michelle at the Vatican showed a black dress and a veil. It looked fine on her, nothing special.

urbane legend said...

Michael McClain said...
Why must we be continued to be cursed with these people?

You speak for most of the country.

John said...

Whether she likes it or not, she is a former first lady. She owes it to us to act the part.

Thank God she is. As one of our number frequently points out, former President/First Lady is not a title of nobility. Ms. Obama is just Ms. Obama now. She can dress however she pleases, and continue to show the poor taste she showed in the White House. She owes me nothing. Neither she nor her husband treated either me or any other citizen with any respect during their time in the White House; why should we expect that to change?

readering said...

Mrs. Obama is one of the few first ladies since Gallup started polling that has never polled at the top for most admired woman. In part because of Hillary Clinton's unique position. Wonder if that will change and they'll switch off in 2017. Hillary has trended down since leaving the State Department. Don't see Melania Trump topping in 2017 when she didn't even register in top 20 2016 (Michelle came in 5th in 2008).

damikesc said...

Mrs. Obama is one of the few first ladies since Gallup started polling that has never polled at the top for most admired woman. In part because of Hillary Clinton's unique position.

Her likeness to Chewbacca and RBF issues did not help.

damikesc said...

I am impressed that I've not seen the media fawn over how beautiful Melania is after years of that nonsense with the decidedly-not-in-the-same-ballpark-as-beautiful Michelle.

Amadeus 48 said...

I always thought that all the praise of a beautiful woman's shoulders (or a woman's beautiful shoulders) in novels of a certain sort was a substitute for praising her decolletage--the cultured way of saying, "Nice tits!"

Am I wrong?

LordSomber said...

Bandway has a great song called "White Nipples."

It's pretty awesome.

Bad Lieutenant said...

Amadeus, think "throat" for that. Shoulders, arms--e.g., white-armed Hera--knees, ankles, so many elements of the female form to delight and inflame us.

Earnest Prole said...

One word: Wookie

sdharms said...

8am day one when she moved into the WH, Michelle O wore clothes I wouldn't wear to paint the garage. This off the shoulder thing is so "ugly American tourist" . Why can she and her hubby not DISAPPEAR for good?