+ Ask The Edit, + Broadcasting Style

Belle’s SOTU, Morning After Recap

Last night, millions of Americans gathered in front of their television sets to listen to the President lay out his vision for our nation’s future.  They did so because they’re deeply engaged in the political process, and because the major networks don’t show anything else during that time slot and most of us used up our cache of DVR’ed Downton Abbey episodes over the weekend.

We also tune into The State of the Union speech because SOTU is to A-type nerds who got fives on the AP Government exam, what the Academy Awards Red Carpet is to 20-year-old sorority girls with crushes on George Clooney.  Appointment television.  And since I promised myself a policy-free SOTU experience this year (doctor’s orders), the only thing I cared about last night was the clothes.  So let’s start off with the fashionable FLOTUS herself, Michelle Obama…

There was a brief moment of panic this evening, when the White House released a Vine video that showed FLOTUS wearing a neon, floral-print dress.  I thought to myself, “She’s not going to wear that to the State of the Union, is she?”  But my concerns proved to be for naught when the First Lady stepped into the gallery in a pine green ensemble from Azzedine Alaia.


It’s not my favorite outfit that she’s ever worn, but it’s a fabulous color and a flattering style.  The First Lady really is determined to single-handedly bring back the bolero jacket though, isn’t she?  Personally, of all her SOTU looks, I still like the Isaac Mizrahi ensemble she wore in 2010 the best.

Want to snag her style?  Start with this Jonathan Simkhai skirt that’s perfect for spring, or go for this simpler (and cheaper) black skirt from Adrianna Papell.  In dress form, I found this substantially similar Halston Heritage dress and this basic Gap fit-and-flare frock.

After the jump, we turn our attention to the Vice-Fashionista-in-Chic, Dr. Jill Biden…

State of the Union.JPEG-0903c

It seems the good Doctor took a nasty tumble and fractured her wrist.  Thus, she used a lavender pashmina to minimize the outfit-ruining impact of her black sling and camouflage-printed cast (?).  Despite her injury, Dr. Biden looks positively smashing in a bold purple dress with a slight peplum from Michael Kors.  She may get second-billing next to the fashion-forward First Lady, but her classic style will always be first in my heart.

To recreate her SOTU attire, try this Isaac Mizrahi dress or this chic Black Halo.  Plus-size?  Try this dress from City Chic.  Petite?  Try the Isaac Mizrahi dress in blue. Like the scarf? Have a look at this wrap from Halogen.

Lastly, we move onto Rep. Cathy McMorris-Rodgers, Congresswoman from Eastern Washington and multi-tasking-Mom-extroardinaire, who delivered the Republican Response to the State of the Union speech…


I may be a fashion blogger, but I’m also a woman with a middle-class-sized bank account, so I don’t know an Alaia, from an Altazzurra.  (Everything I know about Alaia, I learned from Cher Horowitz.)  But the second that the Gentlelady from Washington appeared the screen, I knew that dress was Trina Turk.

What can I say?  I’m all about brand awareness.

Sadly, the Sarafina dress is from several seasons ago and unavailable for sale.  But given how often she wears it, and the fact that she also owns it in black, I think it’s safe to say it was a good buy.  I will add it to my list of items to search for on future eBay scavenger hunts.

Looking for a copycat?  Try this half-sleeve Theory Tolland dress for starters.  In the under-$100 category, the slimming cummerbund-waist on this Limited dress is a dream.  And if you care for a little color block, this Elie Tahari dress mixes black and navy like a pro.

Plus-size? Try this dress from ASOS Curve.  Petite? The closest thing I could find was this Ivy & Blu faux-wrap dress.

If you’d like more coverage of the SOTU fashion choices, I am supposed to be featured on a web-chat with the Huffington Post at 10:30AM Eastern today.  I don’t have all the details (last-minute planning), but if you keep an eye on my Twitter feed, I can direct you there when I do.

P.S. Be careful on those icy roads and sidewalks.  Not everyone can rock a cast with Dr. Biden’s ferocity.

Leave a Reply to Cammy · cancel comment


  1. K says:

    This was a fabulous post!!!

    January 29, 2014/Reply
  2. Meaghan says:

    I thought Dr. Biden looked fabulous- I thought her cast was leopard? If it is leopard, I respect that. Not sure how I feel about a camo cast…


    January 29, 2014/Reply
  3. Cammy says:

    FLOTUS’s dress looked like a hoop skirt to me..

    January 29, 2014/Reply
  4. Charleigh says:

    I’m watching your twitter feed but no link to the webinar!

    January 29, 2014/Reply
  5. Charleigh says:

    Nevermind, is it this? https://ow.ly/t4y3o

    January 29, 2014/Reply
  6. Charleigh says:

    Totally watching you! Go Belle!

    January 29, 2014/Reply
  7. AG says:

    Ha, I bought that Trina Turk dress at a boutique in Charlottesville in 2008 or 2009 on clearance for $75.

    January 29, 2014/Reply
  8. Bailey says:

    I loved Senator Kay Hagan in her bright pink outfit. She always stands out and her cheerful colors are a fantastic contrast to the typical dull and depressing palette of Congress.

    January 29, 2014/Reply
  9. GingerR says:

    FLOTUS and I just don’t have similar style viewpoints. When I see those high-waisted dresses with flared/pleated skirts I think, “covering up a pear shape.” Obviously she thinks, “highlight a waist” – even if you waist is so high it’s almost under bust.

    January 29, 2014/Reply
  10. GoGoGo says:

    Oh, this is adorable. You guys absolutely must check this out.

    HUffington Post asked a bunch of lawmakers on Tuesday “Who are you wearing?”

    Many of them didn’t really understand the question. Those who did gave a really adorable range of answers.

    “I’m wearing Betsy Ross!”

    “I’m wearing a Hugo Boss suit, made in Ohio by union labor!”

    “I’m wearing puka shells. I haven’t taken them off in 20 years. Undercover surfer.”


    January 30, 2014/Reply