"I firmly believe that with the right footwear one can rule the world." - BETTE MIDLER
Women's History Month, which celebrates and observes the vital role of women in history, arrives hot on the heels of the close of our election season. In celebration of new beginnings - both political and seasonal, we’ve decided to commemorate the iconic looks solidified in history by some of the worlds most stylish first ladies. Political fashion has long served as an endless subject matter to fuel a good salon ‘chin-wag’ that would see you through a full-head highlight application. In recent years, primarily thanks to the rise of reality TV, the sartorial choices being made by the world’s exclusive ‘First Wives Club’ has morphed into it’s very own soap opera where everyone has an opinion. The Kardashian effect is in full play; similar to the ‘First Ladies’ of reality TV, their every move is scrutinized, open to public interpretation and everyone has a favorite. Outfits are routinely dissected and put back together, subliminal meanings read into every color choice and brand selection as government interpreters scramble to unearth the possible secrets and strategy behind the powerful men they support. If Melania wears white, does Trump truly come in peace or is it a red herring to throw us off the scent of nuclear war?!
The link between fashion and politics is stronger now than at any time since Jackie Kennedy yet it is still a thankless role – a scaled equation of politics and diplomacy is essential when selecting a wardrobe that must please everyone, convey an aura of demure devotion, an understanding of the semiotics of style and a rather thick skin to brace yourself against the world in a day and age where ‘everyone is a critic’. It has often been said that behind every strong man there is an even stronger woman and we applaud the iconic women who have stepped up to the tricky challenge of what is to be a First Lady; modern women are living their best ever lives, stepping out of conventional roles and striving daily to obtain a higher quality of life yet our First Ladies are seemingly still bound by the same mythical expectations placed upon the “perfect 50’s housewife” - you’re required to wholeheartedly support your partners decisions, “feed the world”, “create world peace” and do it all looking beautiful and fashionable.
The famous street fashion photographer for the New York times, Bill Cunningham, famously quoted: “Fashion is the armor to survive the reality of everyday life” - a statement which most certainly rings true for these ladies, who with the flick of new do can knock breaking news off the front page of any media outlet or a maybe a point or two off the polls. First ladies have become the supermodels of our age – a blend of soft power, fame and fashion and it would serve their spouses well to stay on their good sides. Remember Mr. Presidents, Happy Wife, Happy Life.
Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis
QUEEN RANIA OF JORDAN