Who is Michelle Obama's inaugural designer Thom Browne?
Posted January 21, 2013
Michelle Obama's necktie-inspired coat and dress make perfect sartorial sense, considering the man who created them, Thom Browne.
The first lady's choice was in keeping with her penchant for championing lesser-known American designers. A critical darling since launching his own label a dozen years ago, after stints at Club Monaco and Polo Ralph Lauren, Browne is best known for revolutionizing the men's suit, shrinking the jacket and lopping off the legs to flood plain-friendly proportions. He's reached a wider audience with his work for Brooks Brothers and Moncler, but he didn't debut a women's line until 2010.
It's not the first time Browne and Obama have come together. Last July, the first lady honored the Allentown, Pa., native - his brother Pat Browne is a Republican in the Pennsylvania State Senate - at a White House ceremony recognizing winners of the annual Cooper-Hewitt National Design Museum awards.
"Every day, these visionary designers are pushing boundaries, creating and revealing beauty where we least expect it," Obama told the audience, which included the creator of her first inaugural swearing-in outfit, from 2009, Isabel Toledo, a past award winner. "All of them have done something really good for our country and our world. From the clothes we wear to the technologies we use to the public spaces we enjoy, their work affects just about every aspect of our lives."
In September, she wore Browne's gray and black lace short-sleeve dress to the Democratic National Convention - a demure departure from today's more modern look. It's a dress she brought out again to wear to her husband's final presidential debate the following month.
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