Gilding and Glamour Returns to the U.S. Presidency
January 25, 2009 by Martha Rooks
On Inauguration Day, the new President’s First Lady, Michelle Obama proved herself to be fashion savvy: matching yellow ochre dress and coat with coordinated gloves from J.Crew. That night, she wore a one-shouldered white dress by American designer Jason Wu, with 77.6 carats worth of diamonds as she party-hopped all night long from inaugural ball to inaugural ball, dancing with her dashing husband.
The carat count included her earrings, with a four inch drop style; a ring; and a slew of bangle bracelets. She didn’t need (or apparently want) a necklace with that one shouldered gown.
The jewelry was on loan from Mrs. Obama’s favorite Chicago boutique, Ikram, according to Marla Bell, a spokeswoman for Loree Rodkin, the designer who made the precious gem and gold accessories. The jewelry, along with her dress, will be donated to the Smithsonian Institution for display.
In case you missed it, let me say it again, those earrings swept her bare shoulders. They were 60.34 carats all by themselves. She left her wedding ring back at the White House, and instead wore a knuckle-buster of a cocktail ring: 12.83 carats that was sparkling on her finger all night long. And that stack of thin bangle bracelets (thank heavens she brought back the bangles! I’ve been waiting for that!) added another 4.43 carats to the weight.
Surely the designer was only being coy when Bell said she “didn’t have a dollar figure for the value of the gems and precious metal creations.” But of course, there are ways of arriving at such a number.
For instance, one reporter checked at the Moody Blues boutique in Scottsdale, AZ, which carries that same designer’s line of jewels. A chain necklace with just a mere three carats of diamonds there comes in at $21,000, according to sources.
So, if you extrapolate from there, Mrs. Obama was wearing about $543,000 worth of diamonds and precious metals. That’s a trend almost any woman would like to get behind!
Michelle Obama is rapidly becoming one of the most visible and inspirational women in our world. She’s already attained international role model and fashion icon status.
Perhaps an era of bejeweled status has returned to our nation’s capitol? Some fashion mavens are suggesting that it has been fifty years, since the Kennedy Presidency, that such glamour and dazzling filled our eyes. But others say the *bling* has been more recent, if a little less obvious.
By the way, if you don’t have $543,000 to spend on jewelry to match your ensemble, we’re certain we can help you find something smaller and more scaled to your pocketbook in this “era of change.”
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