Make us your home page

Deal Divas

Stephanie Hayes, Katie Sanders, Kameel Stanley, & Keyonna Summers

All-American girls: Sasha and Malia steal the inaugural fashion show and our hearts




Say what you will about Mom's feathery frock. The First Lady made the right decision where it mattered most. Daughters Sasha and Malia were utterly adorable in J.Crew periwinkle and guava coats.

And the choice sent a message, every bit as strong as Dad's call for responsibility.

Children's fashion says a lot about families, especially the middle class. I don't have kids, but I write about schools in my day job. I'm often aghast to see little girls prancing around in authentic UGGs, "Princess" shirts and, seriously, trendy Coach purses that I can't justify buying for myself.

The choice of J.Crew for Sasha and Malia's coats is a refreshing reality check. You better believe the Obamas had access to designer kids labels. Their classmates at exclusive private schools in D.C. and Chicago probably wear them. But the new first family has set some standards about what's acceptable for little girls. It's about time someone did.

Now J. Crew may be a mall brand, but it's not cheap. Michelle Obama looked to J.Crew for those fabulous olive green leather gloves, paired with her sunny Inauguration Day dress. She's made it her signature to mix high-end designers with mass marketed brands.

The velvet-ribbon coats worn by the Obama girls were designed specifically for them from the store's CrewCuts line for kids. Hey, Dad was getting sworn in as the world's most powerful leader. It's a special occasion.

But it wasn't "take out a second mortgage" excessive. It wasn't "put Susie's I-phone on the Visa" and figure out how to pay for Christmas next month. It reflected the priorities of a president who will have to lead the nation through a collective purging after an era of living beyond our means.

The Obamas recognize that a 10-year-old and a seven-year-old may have the eyes of the world upon them, but they're just kids. And like other little girls, Sasha and Malia have time to go all out with the dresses that will be all their own -- at a prom, a graduation, a wedding.

~ Deal Diva Letitia

(Photo: AP)

[Last modified: Thursday, May 20, 2010 5:13pm]


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours