Robert Verdi and I go way back. I first met him when I attended my first New York Fashion Week, when he was still host of Full Frontal Fashion on Metro TV in New York. The year was 2000 and he was asking my stylish roomie and me about our outfits. For Fashion Institute of Technology sophomores, that's a big deal. Plus, he went to F.I.T. too so we just gabbed and gabbed. Verdi is still very much around styling Eva Longoria, interior designing for the stars, hosting television shows and speaking to us about our next first lady's style at the Juicy Couture 5th Avenue store opening party. He's not the gushing type, and he spoke a bit about the Jackie O comparison people have been making. Nonetheless, interesting stuff. Listen up!
“Here’s the skinny: She looked like a lava lamp [after Obama's acceptance speech] and we all know that. I didn’t like that light bright dress and I think she could have made a better choice. I like that she wore an American designer, I think she should continue to wear American fashion and speak the style of the nation in her public appearances and then move towards an international flavor."
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"But all things being equal her choices are a bit provincial. That’s not to say she doesn’t have the style bug — it's just to say that her choices are provincial. People have been likening her to Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis who was a grand dame, of course, an iconic American fashion. But the similarities are that they both like fashion and they both embrace contemporary style. The difference is that at Jacqueline Kennedy’s time, style was really something that was distant from the people. So she wore Gucci and Halston and people couldn’t go to H&M — they couldn’t go to Juicy Couture. I think Michelle does the same thing. She does contemporary fashion but what’s contemporary today is much broader and much more affordable. I do hope that she kind of polishes it up and wears more stylish versions because she’s worn some, like I said, provincial things.”