Michelle Obama covers Vogue, talks daughters’ education

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    It’s official: Michelle Obama covers Vogue magazine’s March 2009 issue. Reports have been circulating throughout the fashion industry that the fashion bible was eyeing Michelle for a story, but word was not confirmed until very recently. The magazine has a tradition of featuring First Lady’s inside of its pages, but only recently broke with that tradition. When the latest issue hits newsstands Michelle will become only the second First Lady to score a cover (Hilary Clinton was the first). Re-uniting with up and coming designer Jason Wu, who created her Inauguration gown, Michelle wore a magenta dress for the cover shot, which was snapped by famed photog Annie Leibovitz. The Washington Post reports that the cover shoot took place in January while the Obama’s were still residing at the Hay-Adams Hotel in Washington, D.C. and thus the hotel became the backdrop for the upcoming spread.

    Penned by Vogue Editor-at-Large Andre Leon Talley, the story quotes Michelle discussing her desire for daughters Sasha and Malia to live normally. "I’m going to try to take them to school every morning — as much as I can," she told Talley. "But there’s also a measure of independence. And obviously there will be times I won’t be able to drop them off at all. I like to be a presence in my kids’ school. I want to know the teacher; I want to know the other parents."

    The magazine doesn’t have a great history of celebrating African-American women. Jennifer Hudson was the last Black woman to cover the mag (in March 2007), and was only the third African-American celebrity to receive the honor. Andre, who is African-American, was instrumental in Jennifer’s cover and seems to have also been with Michelle’s.

    In the upcoming issue, Vogue Editor-in-Chief Anna Wintour wrote, "Change was the clarion call of Barack Obama’s election campaign, though I don’t think any of us at Vogue initially realized that would include the difference that was going to be made by First Lady Michelle Obama’s wardrobe. It wasn’t just that her choices projected a simpler, streamlined, more modern attitude, rejecting the ridiculous idea that the only way for a First Lady to dress is in the dreaded White House standard-issue uniform — the boxy, anonymous suit that always managed to look as appealing, and as comfortable, as armor. Instead, we have a woman who is happy in newer, less obvious designer choices like [Jason] Wu and [Isabel] Toledo [who Michelle wore to the Swearing In Ceremony]. . . . It’s inspiring to see our First Lady so serene and secure in her personal style."

    The issue is on sale now.

    – Whitney Teal

    Post your comments: Are you excited to see Michelle on the cover of Vogue? Should Black women even be concerned about attention from the magazine?

    Photo courtesy Vogue


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