Michelle speaks, and I listen.


I will let you, my pretties, decide for yourselves if Michelle Obama channeled Laura Bush or Jackie Kennedy in her inaugural ensemble. Sophisticate or sofa?  The choice is yours. 

I will give you the details ? as if you didn't already know. The dress, coat, and cardigan was designed by Isabel Toledo, stitched up in the Cuban-American designer's New York atelier by Chinese, Polish and Spanish seamstresses. It's made of Swiss wool lace and lined in French silk. Oh, girl, you are going global. Absolutely.

So. If you want to emulate our beautiful First Lady, I have several suggestions. Of course. You knew I would.


Add a ribbon to the coat in Simplicity 4194, and you'll have one like Ms. Obama's. The dress is a little spicier, certainly, but you're not the First Lady, so who cares? Show that gorgeous skin. You can do it. And. I rather like this bodice. The better to show off a statement-making necklace.


McCall's 6676, from 1962 ? speaking of Jackie  ? offers another choice. Simple. Elegant. And, surely, surely, surely, it's not that difficult to make. Ya think?


Put your own slant on the inaugural dress and coat with Butterick 2219. It's full-skirted, sure, but the shoe-string belt pays homage to Ms. O's ensemble. And you can always make it in lemongrass. Or yellow, if you're feeling mellow. (Yes. I confess. I was practically imbedded in  the TV most of the day. I did rip myself away for a few minutes to paw through The Blue Gardenia archives to find these patterns. I suffer for you. I do. I'll do anything to make you happy. Anything. Almost.)


And then there's Vogue Couturier Design 1276, designed by Michael. This is the one I would wear. Love the overblouse. Love the coat details: the flaps, the collar. In fact, know what? I love this ensemble. Period. Love it.

So. Lemongrass. Lemonade. Sunshine. Maize. Whatever. Wear a dress and matching coat. Soon. Reference our new First Lady. Go forth. Be a glimmering ray of hope. After all. It's a new dawn. It's a new day. It isn't just cliche. It isn't. I insist.