While most first ladies have had a classic style or a signature look, such as Jacqueline Kennedy Onasis’ skirt suits and pillbox hats, Laura Bush’s demure dresses, Hillary Clinton’s “power suits” and Michelle Obama’s brightly colored skirts and tank-shirt ensembles, Melania Trump, who was a former a model, has chosen long, lean and slightly sexy jumpsuits as her signature, which is not congruent with what the majority of American woman are wearing right now, but may begin a trend. Many former first ladies have inspired fashion with their wardrobe choices, especially when appearing for important events like the presidential inauguration, or when meeting with leaders of other countries.
With her long, layered hair and statuesque figure, Melania Trump is a somewhat different first lady than the United States has encountered before. While most first ladies have been considered attractive in their own right, Melania has brought forth a sense of European elegance to the spotlight of the White House. According to Yahoo, Melania prefers not only jumpsuits but sleeveless jumpsuits, which show her slender, toned arms, but still leave plenty to the imagination. Her choices are sensual but never revealing.
Melania is particularly fond of Ralph Lauren jumpsuits, in which she famously wore a bold white one-shouldered ensemble that cost $3,990 on election night. It was a silk jumpsuit from the Margerie Collection by Ralph Lauren, and many read into her choice as either a statement about women’s suffrage or a response to the fact that Hillary Clinton and her supporters chose that color to head to the polls. Regardless of her reason, the wide legged jumpsuit could easily be mistaken for an evening gown unless one looks closely.
Her love of jumpsuits is nothing new, even though Ralph Lauren is famous for them, and Ralph Lauren is one of the few famous stylists that has agreed to work with the first family because of the heavy opposition that President Donald Trump has faced, with many designers saying that they disagree with Trump’s core values. Zac Posen, Tom Ford, and Marc Jacobs have refused to dress the first family, but Ralph Lauren has not, which produced a Twitter frenzy of the hashtag #BoycottRalphLauren, of which he appeared to not answer.
Why does Melania seem to prefer jumpsuits over evening gown or dresses, although she wears those occasionally as well? The answer may be that a jumpsuit is able to combine elegance and ease, and is simply more physically comfortable, allowing for natural movement. Melania, who has largely preferred to stay out of her husband’s spotlight and focus on their son, may value comfort and versatility over many other things. Designer Roksanda Ilincic said “the purpose is not to replace the dress, but to find an air of elegance and comfort in both – that there is an allure in a look that appears effortless,” according to The Guardian.
“I don’t think it is about replacing the dress; it is about giving alternative options that break the rules about what eveningwear should be. Today, women want to feel comfortable and confident, and aren’t restricted by preconceptions about what glamour or femininity has to look like.”
Melania Trump has broken several molds of what the First Lady of the United States has usually been: Melania immigrated to the United States, took up modeling, and even posed nude years ago. She famously chose at times to stay behind on the campaign trail in order to keep things more stable and routine for her ten-year-old son, and she seems unafraid to step out of the box and bring a sense of demure sex appeal and elegance into the White House with her signature jumpsuits.
[Featured Image by Win McNamee/Getty Images)