Michelle Obama’s Fancy Pants

Posted on July 02, 2013

Have we seen FLO in pants before? Dressy pants, we mean. We know she’s worn them casually, but we don’t think we’ve ever seen her in public-appearance pants.


U.S. President Barack Obama and first lady Michelle Obama are greeted by Minister of International Relations and Cooperation Maite Mkoana-Mashabne after arriving at Waterkloof Air Force Base in Pretoria, South Africa.

We’re afraid we can’t get behind them, though. We like her in pants; we just aren’t crazy about the look because it’s all different shades of one color. We’re fans of tone-on-tone, but there’s a point at which you can take it too far. Honestly, if she’d just worn some black shoes, we’d probably be okay with this look. Certainly, the colors all look good on her, and we love that jacket. We’re going to assume the shirt’s askew because she just got off a plane. Shelley doesn’t strike us as the “artful half-tuck” type.



[Photo Credit: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images]

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  • Oh I actually love the color layering, but I think blue might be the only color I would like it with.

  • MK03

    Yeah, I’m not digging this. It’s a little too “liberal arts prep-school principal” for me.

    Also, I think the shirt is crooked because it’s cut at an angle. It doesn’t look tucked.

    • ballerinawithagun

      I think the shirt is cut at an angle also, bottom looks too straight to be accidental.

  • GorgeousThings

    Not loving them, but it is the dead of winter in Pretoria, so I can understand not wanting to go bare-legged.

  • MilaXX

    The shirt looks like it has an asymmetrical hem. I like the color but I’m not crazy about the jacket. reminds me of those suits Steve Harvey used to wear.

    • Survey says: Shapeless!

    • Jaeda Laurez

      ha- it needs 12 buttons and pinstripes.

    • SpillinTea

      If only she wore some of Principal Boss Lady’s outfits and that short hair…lol

  • PeggyOC

    FLOTUS, like many of us with the shape of a pear, probably has trouble finding trousers that fit. These do fit her well, but I agree about the Way Too Much Blue of this outfit.

  • StellaZafella

    I think the shirt hem is asymmetrical. I love the frock coat, but I’d pick one less shade at least…this just looks like odd color choices in one hue. Great outfit for travel over all.

  • GillianHolroyd

    oh the hair. Ma’am, please get it cut.

  • Jennifer L.

    I wish I could find pants that fit me that well!

  • Judy_S

    What impresses me is how crisp the outfit looks. Very nice for debarking from a plane.

    • gabbilevy

      I’m not sure AF1 still qualifies as a ‘plane.’

  • Jessica Freeman

    4 shades of blue…its too much. And its a damn shame because everything fits so well.

  • mshesterp

    I kinda love it–it’s very striking, beautiful colors (all of them), it fits her beautifully (even those pants, and pants can be a real challenge to fit well), and she looks quite put together, as someone said below, very crisp. Carry on, Flotus. Carry on.

  • Substitute teacher realness.

  • another_laura

    Two blues too many.

  • majorbedhead

    I agree on the shoes. Royal blue patent leather….blech.

  • Nancer

    I love it. Love all the blues and she can really rock a pant!

  • cowper

    Yes, she looks like a paint swatch at the hardware store: sky, blueberry, montauk, columbine (in high gloss).

  • nannypoo

    I like the pants and the asymmetrical hem, but I can’t get behind the jacket. I can’t tell if it’s a cutaway or if it’s too small for her hips, but it’s not flattering on her.

  • julnyes

    I like the outfit, but agree that there are too many hues of blue.

  • Kate Andrews

    I think Shelley needs to convene with Hillary about pantsuits.

  • TheAmericaness

    Not the best lighting either.

  • alyce1213

    Yeah, one less blue (the shoes > black) would’ve done it for me.
    For just stepping off a plane during a big trip, she looks phenomenal. I just love to look at her.

  • Lisa M. (ReVoir) Kramp

    I love it. I’d wear it. Go, Shelly!

  • sekushinonyanko

    I think skirts just work better on her because she has a lot going on in the hips and thighs. I don’t think these pants are very flattering.

  • DeebaCee

    My only quibbles are the blue shoes and the asymmetrical hem. Otherwise… “I’m Deebacee, and I approve of this outfit”

  • flamingoNW

    Black shoes would have been nice but it works for me, except the messy hair. I feel like she’s been toning down the fashion lately.

  • MarTeaNi

    The shirt partially tucker, asymmetrical or is she just really leaning that far to the right?

    • Magatha

      (A) – I don’t think so, (B) this seems more likely, and (C) no, no way, not never, not Shelly.

  • msdamselfly

    Looks great except for the shoes

  • flamingoNW

    She had a great dress in Tanzania. Very interesting.

  • YourBaloneyDontGotNoSecondName

    I am from the deep south. Tone on tone is a *very* African-American thing, and this is probably appropriate and respectful outfit for the venue and audience. Besides, I love her, I love blue, and so I love this look.

  • uprightcitizen

    Since it’s winter there, a pair of black boots would have given this just the edge needed. Those blue flats are too much blue, and they make a pretty chic trouser look a little sad. She’s still the most stylish First Lady since Jackie, though … by a mile (or kilometer).

  • conniemd

    Love the coat and the colors of her tone on tone. I got the giggles picturing her next to the Pres wearing some of the crazy stripes from the Givenchy collection and how well they would match.

  • conniemd

    The South African Minister of whatever has a pretty cool outfit herself with some very hip boots.

  • friscogal

    I think what is bugging me most is the hair. It looks so old for her. Where are those rockin’ bangs? An updated style would help that outfit a lot. Also I agree – black shoes.

  • Colin

    I LOVE this look, except I wish the pants were slimmer at the hem. The color layering is wonderful, and I have to disagree about it being too much; I actually think if she had introduced another color it would have been too much. As it stands, the color palette shows an interesting visual variety in a clean uncluttered way.

  • Charlotte Karlsen


  • Darren Nesbitt

    her hair is really nice here.

  • Sagecreek

    Yeah, I have some criticisms, but since I hang out on political sites where they all call her MooChelle, I cannot fault her for this. I love her so much.

  • lisaepc

    I like that the pants are not all creased up. As for the blouse, maybe its cut like that? Who is she wearing?

  • formerlyAnon

    I like the jacket, but I think it needed to be cut more flatteringly – a modified cutaway, maybe, but not *that* one. I don’t mind the asymmetrically hemmed top, and if she might be wearing the ensemble without the jacket, it might have been a good choice, can’t say.

  • kimiakay

    “…artful half-tuck” is a new one for me. This is a style? I’ve seen people wear it, but I thought it was just something that happened in a hurry or something. A mistake, if you will. But I agree, she doesn’t look like she would be that type.

    • demidaemon

      It’s usually something men do casually, not women, at least in my experience.

  • bellafigura1

    Yeah, that’s an asymmetrical top, from my point of view. It’s the pants that aren’t working for me. Not a good cut for normal-sized thighs.

  • LaSylphide

    All those shades of blue are making my brain hurt. Maybe if the ‘artfully half-tucked’ blouse had been a rich cream, the outfit might have looked less…blue.

  • quiltrx

    Oh, I couldn’t take black shoes with a blue outfit. Just a twitch of mine. I like the all-blue. And the shirt looks so smooth-hanging, I think it’s asymmetrical.
    Pretty outfit, and I think very appropriate for a long flight.

  • marlie

    I love the tone-on-tone look here, but I wish she’d switched out one item for something in a neutral color.

  • mickiemonkey

    OHHH are those Tahitian pearls?? Such a wave of jealousy washed over me that it brought on a hot flash.

  • Town

    Looks like Hillary’s pantsuits to me. Me no likey.

  • j_anson

    I love all those purples on her. I can’t even care if it’s one too many. They look so luscious. Although perhaps just a bit… Star Trek: TNG. But hey, I was raised on TNG.

    (Okay, it’s true about the shoes, though.)

  • bd73

    she’s worn pants lots of times.

  • Louise Bryan

    Those are travelling pants. I think the shirt hem is intentionally asymmetric. Definitely would have been better with black shoes.

  • pdquick

    Black shoes would have killed this look. This. Is. Fantastic.

  • concernedGrndma

    Sloppy!! Pitiful representation of what a First Lady should look like.