Style is fast becoming the work for Melania Trump. Attracting attention for channeling Jackie Kennedy at her husband’s inauguration, the White House website now boasts of her QVC jewelry range.
A day of strange optics where every expression is analysed instantaneously is a day about one wears—because speaks louder in a day of powerful and symbolic imagery than what one is wearing and how one is wearing it?
Then there is the rain, which can screw everything up.
And so it was on Inauguration Day that the powerful engaged in a the silent game of clothing study: the smiles and chitter-chatter of small-talk in smart suits and dresses hiding unbridgeable cultural differences, and the resentment of political battle—which, in an fittingly seemingly endless red tie, Donald Trump immediately increased up in his angry, dystopian inauguration speech.
If the commentators found themselves captivated by Melania Trump who was wearing a powder-blue cashmere dress and matching bolero jacket by Ralph Lauren, which looked—as has been widely agreed—very Jackie O, circa JFK’s 1961 inauguration, Michelle Obama’s much simpler burgundy dress and coat held their own meaning.
Mrs. Trump’s dress, which she wore with her hair up, moving with the same exacting grace, was a dress that spoke of definite arrival and the statement of power.
It was a softly tailored suit of armor; the most feminine example of power dressing, which Jackie Kennedy invented.
GOLD STANDARD FOR 1ST LADIES
If she is the style gold standard any First Lady must live in the shadow of, if not actively aspire to look like, Mrs. Trump, who herself has spoken admiringly of Mrs. Kennedy, completed the look with retro, luxe-looking gloves.
In so doing, Melania Trump transmits a meaningful message about the kind of First Lady she wants to be:
- Fashion plate,
a First Lady synonymous with grace.
IDEALISM AND YOUTH
But Mrs. Kennedy’s iconography is intimately tied up with the iconography of Camelot and a certain period of American idealism and youth which her husband’s White House does not quite stand for.
The White House website, freshly scrubbed of its record on LGBT rights, climate change, and civil rights, now includes mention of Melania’s QVC jewelry range.