Michelle Obama

Michelle Obama, The Recessionista in the White House: I need four more years of her great, affordable style

By  | 
Pictured: Mrs. O in Thom Browne worn at both the Democratic National  Convention & the Debates

When I started this blog in July 2008, not many peope really knew the word Recessionista. The term budget shopping might have been familiar, but not so much budget style.  In 2008, The First Lady of the United States (FLOTUS) was Laura Bush. She wore well known designers like Oscar de le Renta.  You certainly would never see Mrs. Bush wearing a Merona dress from Target or stepping out in a ballgown designed by a recent FIDM graduate, like Mrs. Obama did in 2009 when she wore Jason Wu.  Since Mrs.Obama became First Lady, she has really helped to define what it means to be a “Chic Recessionista.” She has appeared in reasonably priced clothing from Target, H&M, J. Crew, Tracey Reese, Rachel Roy, ASOS and others.  She has helped emerging designers like Maria Pinto and  Isabel Toledo. She has also recycled her clothing, wearing it over and over again.  Unlike Jacqueline Kennedy, Michelle Obama is frequently seen wearing the same outfits from year to year.  During the recent Presidential debates she wore the same grey lace Thom Brown dress (pictured above) she had worn at the Convention again, and  Preen suite that she first in 2011.  I can’t think of anyone more frugally fabuless than Michelle Obama.  I don’t think Narcisco Rodriquez would be coming to Kohl’s this Wed, if Mrs. O hadn’t worn his dresses.

Pictured: Michelle Obama set recessionista style in 2011 in a $35.00 H and M dress

Mrs. Obama has showed us all how to dress well without breaking the bank. She’s also shown us that it’s a great thing to be able to shop your own closet, and wear the same clothing over and over again. What working woman doesn’t buy clothes and wear them several times?  It was unrealistic to think that a First Lady always needed to wear anew fashionable garment,  that had never been seen before, every time she appeared in public.  Granted, there are more important things in life than fashion, but fashion sets the tone and gives many of us the tools to present a positive self-image.  Mrs. Obama has been a great ambassador for recessionista style. I need four more years of the divine Mrs. O.  Her style, her smarts and her empathy for working people are irreplaceable. Please vote tomorrow. It’s so important.  As for Mr. Obama, I need him for four more years too.  Ending the war in Iraq, getting Bin Laden, bailing out the auto industry and stopping the banks from failing, these are not bad things, no matter what anyone says!


Since 2008, Mary Hall has been the author of The Recessionista Blog, which is read by thousands of regular readers in over 160 countries. An internationally recognized expert on the art of the living the good life for less, she has been a commentator on local, national, and international radio and TV shows. Her advice has been featured in over 2,000 media outlets, including The New York Times, Reuters, Life & Style magazine, ABC News, NBC News and now The Huffington Post, among many others.