USA Today’s Maria Puente has proven herself to be a eager member of the Michelle Obama Fawn Club. Wednesday’s Life section advertised again that the First Lady enjoyed a "meteoric rise as a fashion icon." This time, Puente celebrated new books oozing over Michelle. The story began:
A chic sheath dress in a bold color — that is the unmistakable Michelle Obama look, one she has made her own as first lady of the United States, according to two new books celebrating Obama's fashion sense.
Her image is everywhere you look these days: Last week, Obama was given a Board of Directors' Special Tribute Award by the Council of Fashion Designers of America, which noted her "meteoric rise as a fashion icon." Last month, she was in Paris, where she once again shone next to super-chic French first lady Carla Bruni-Sarkozy.
But she especially stands out these days in bookstores, striking a pose on Michelle Style: Celebrating the First Lady of Fashion by Mandi Norwood (William Morrow, $19.99 ) and on Michelle Obama: First Lady of Fashion and Style by Susan Swimmer (Black Dog & Leventhal, $9.95). There's even a Michelle Obama 2010 wall calendar featuring 20 color pictures of her ($15.99 at Amazon.com).
Did Puente and USA Today have to make sure the reader knew they should order their Michelle calendars at Amazon? The two authors Puente featured are even more fawning than Puente:
"All (in the fashion world) agree that this is a moment in fashion thanks to Michelle Obama," says Swimmer, fashion features editor at More magazine. "Her confidence and creativity are changing the way women are looking at clothing — it's what I call the 'Michelle effect.' "
And this lady is certainly bowing deeply:
Norwood says Obama deserves a "big, fat, juicy hurray" for making it OK for serious, professional women to indulge their love of fashion and accessories.
"There's no messing about with Michelle Obama — she's got a very bold and approachable style sensibility, something we can all relate to," Norwood says. "She's like us — on our really best day."