Wednesday, January 21, 2009

At least they didn't wear khakis UPDATED

When I learned that the Obama girls wore J.Crew to the inauguration, I found it a bit depressing. Yes, they looked adorable, as always, but this was the Most Important Day Ever, for America, the world, and, in all likelihood, the two of them. J.Crew is hardly Kmart, but it's a cheap enough store for, say, those on grad student budgets to shop in from time to time. I'm not saying they had to go all Sarah Palin-$150,000 on us, but the move struck me as over-the-top tasteful.

Hanna Rosin would disagree. She points out that "those jackets (beautiful, sherbet-y, perfect) that [Michelle Obama] bought her girls cost close to $200, which is quite a lot for a kid's coat." It is, yes, but it's what girls in the Obama's milieu wear to family weddings, graduations, and other small-scale big-deal events. It's not much to spend for an event along the lines of Oh My God My Father's the First Black President, Ever, Starting Now.

That said, Rosin's dead-on re: J.Crew being symbolically off given its "high WASP" connotations. The catalog ranges from 'look, we hired a model who vaguely looks of-color from certain angles, to balance out the many identical blondes' to downright offensive.


How could I blog about children's jackets without mentioning the one I currently covet? Alas, it seems either that my sweater was too bulky or that I am finally too big for a children's XXL. (Probably not the sweater, since the main problem was that it was, amazingly, too short on me.) Still, that this superchic jacket goes for $34.50 puts the J.Crew ones in perspective, and makes me more inclined than before to agree with Rosin's first point.


Anonymous said...

If it makes you feel any better, I happened to learn today (from a J. Crew employee) that the Obama girls' coats were custom made by the company, not purchased off the rack.

Anonymous said...

Further enlightenment: