In an essay entitled “She Slays: Michelle Obama And The Power of Dressing Like You Mean it” in the forthcoming book The Meaning of Michelle, I wrote:
“[Michelle Obama] had some nice fashion ‘moments’ in the first four years, but in the second term, she clearly announced she came to slay! She and her team started taking major style risks, and her style explicitly referenced working-class Black American sartorial traditions. No longer was she seeking to blend in, she was making jaw-dropping fashion statements. Her earrings and other accessories became more opulent, her outfits more fitted, her hair more bouffant. She proved she still had a lot of ‘South Side Chi’ in her!”
So imagine my joy when I saw the above image of Obama last week in the New York Times Style Magazine. Those triangle earrings. Two pieces of crafted gold communicate so much about Lady O’s unapologetic style transformation over the past eight years.
Check out my full essay in The Meaning of Michelle: 16 Writers on the Iconic First Lady and How Her Journey Inspires Our Own. ed. Veronica Chambers (Preface by Ava DuVernay). New York: St. Martin’s, January 2017.