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Michelle Obama's frock sparks fashion storm

By unknown | Jun 30, 2008 | COMMENTS [ 0 ]

Tony Allen-Mills

New York - Economic recession might be looming, but New York's fashion industry has found a potential saviour.

Designers are queuing up to dress Michelle Obama, whose taste in simple, inexpensive summer wear has sent thousands of women scurrying to copy her look.

The wife of Barack Obama, the Democratic presidential nominee, sparked a fashion storm earlier this month when a dress that she wore on a popular television chat show sold out at stores across the country.

Obama told viewers she had paid R1700 for the casual black-and-white leaf-print frock that she wore for an appearance on The View, a morning show watched mainly by women.

The occasion was widely interpreted as a calculated attempt to soften her image after a series of controversies during her husband's primary campaign. Republican critics have questioned her patriotism and attempted to portray her as a leftist radical.

She earned mixed reviews for her political efforts, but her dress was a huge success. Designed by Donna Ricco, whose mass-market fashions are sold at department stores such as Macy's and Nordstrom, the dress is estimated to have sold 2000 copies in a single day.

"Apparently she just bought it off the rack," said Ricco, who sells the same dress from her website for R780 - Sunday Times News Service, London


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