She's always true to the Democrats in her fashion

It seems that everything in the Washington Post is designed to advance Democrats and deride and embarrass their opponents.  The nastiest examples of these are the work of Robin Givhan, the paper's fashion editor.  Her cruelty and bias have been evident for years.  If the Pulitzer Prizes had any shame, they'd blush at having given her an award in 2006 for "witty, closely observed essays that transform fashion criticism into cultural criticism."

Yes, on notable rare occasions, she pokes fun at Democrats, as she did in a 2007 piece mocking a V-shaped neckline Hillary wore.  On the other hand, she absolutely gushed over the outfits worn by Michelle Obama, but for a memorable dig when Michelle stepped off a plane wearing shorts and looking very messy.

When some fashion designers said they'd refuse to dress Melania Trump, she rushed to their defense:

Critics of those designers who've voiced their reluctance to dress the new first lady have maintained that it's a designer's job to simply make clothes – that they should keep personal opinions out of it and not pass judgment on people who wear their clothes. But over time, society has demanded much more from the fashion industry. It expects Seventh Avenue to be cognizant of its impact on young women predisposed to eating disorders. It rallied against the industry's lack of diversity. It has pressured the industry to concern itself with the labor practices of its subcontractors and to create clothes that empower women instead of objectify them.

Society expects fashion to be philanthropic and awake to the world in which it exists. So doesn't taking a stand on a new administration and its policies – in the most direct manner possible – fall into that category?

The designers based in New York's Garment District and scattered around the city are, by and large, not personal dressmakers, or haute couture houses making one-of-a-kind garments for individuals. When they do something for a single customer – typically a celebrity – they are stepping outside the day-to-day business model of their company. Anyone with disposable income can buy a designer's wares at retail – and even some red-carpet celebrities choose to do so. Hayden Panettiere purchased a Tom Ford gown for the 2014 Golden Globes. For the 2016 Globes, Bryce Dallas Howard picked up her Jenny Packham gown at Neiman Marcus.

That's why declining to dress a celebrity is not the equivalent of refusing service. In doing so, designers would in fact be refusing a favor, with all the publicity that goes along with it.

What about patriotism? Should personal feelings and personal satisfaction be put aside out of respect for the symbolism of the first lady? Not necessarily. Protest that grows out of a desire to make the country better, to push it to live up to its ideals, is surely a form of patriotism.

Now she aims her rapier at Melania Trump's "airbrushed" official portrait.  She concedes that Michelle's portrait might have been airbrushed, too – how could she not when it shows the former first lady with what appears to be a 20-inch waist (a trick used by both Vogue and Glamour on at least one occasion)?  But she suggests that Melania's complexion – which to my eyes always looks smooth and unblemished – is different:

Both former first ladies are photographed in a flattering light. Airbrushed? Probably. Nearly all portraits are touched up – a little or a lot. But the effect wasn't obvious.

Mahaux has given the public a two-dimensional version of Trump: just the gloss, just the facade. Trump is the fantasy, the dream. She's not trying to speak to the judgmental types who are quick to sneer at new money, but to folks who would be thrilled to have all that crisp, fresh cash loaded into the back of a fancy car with gold rims.

She has given them virtual realty. An Instagram first lady. And maybe that's good enough. But she has not given them Melania Trump.

Her most savagely nasty comments were for Mrs. Alito's wardrobe choice.  As you may recall, the Alito hearings were nasty and brought the now-justice's wife to tears.  The Alitos were people of modest means, and the confirmation hearings stretched on.  Givhan surely added to the distress of Mrs. Alito, who, after all, is neither a fashion model nor even a political figure.  She was the wife of a candidate for the Supreme Court who was being unfairly tarred.  Was it really necessary to poke fun at her?

His wife's ensembles varied among casual tan slacks with a sweater, bright red anything, and a brown tweed suit and blouse that seemed to be coordinated with a rigor more commonly found in Garanimals. She liked to accessorize with pearls, gold chains, earrings, bracelets and rings. Sometimes she'd wear this treasure trove of jewelry all at once. She was particularly fond of a brooch that resembled nothing more closely than a half-peeled banana. (It could have been a fleur-de-lis, but only as it might be drawn by a 5-year-old.) ...

There was something charmingly awkward about her blue cardigan. A cable-knit cardigan! At a Senate hearing! The sweater has all those connotations of Dan Rather informality, softness, ease and grandmotherly coziness. It is the antithesis of power and strength. The sweater was also baby blue. That isn't clothing as armor, but clothing as security blanket. Remember Linus?

It was as though the nominee's wife had quietly brought her own binky into the room. But then, who couldn't use a little comfort during such a public ordeal?

When Michelle Obama took to wearing cardigans – which she did even to Buckingham Palace to visit the queen – Givhan considered the cardigan look insouciant and wonderful, although the late Oscar de la Renta and others considered it too casual for the occasion.  Unsurprisingly, Givhan shifted her view.

Her way of dressing has resonated with American women, says Robin Givhan, the Pulitzer Prize-winning fashion critic for the Washington Post.

"One of the really vital things that Michelle Obama has done, is she's wearing real fashion," says Givhan, who covered the first lady for her first year in the White House. Mrs. Obama's decision to wear consciously un-corporate looks, Givhan says, "was her own use of fashion as a way of defining who she was going to be in the White House."

Mrs. Obama was going to continue being what she had been – a working wife and mother, wearing what she liked, what was comfortable and what worked for her. In doing that, Givhan says, the first lady was not so much initiating change as reflecting how women around the country already had begun to change their own look – dresses instead of suits, sweaters instead of jackets, bare legs instead of pantyhose. Those choices struck a plangent note.

"When Michelle Obama came along and made all these  things a matter of course," Givhan says, "I think it validated a lot of things they were doing, and also validated things that they wanted to do but often felt they weren't allowed to."

Even how Republicans dress their children is a topic of her partisan bile.  When John Roberts's wife and children appeared for his swearing in, she wrote:

The wife wore a strawberry-pink tweed suit with taupe pumps and pearls, which alone would not have been particularly remarkable, but alongside the nostalgic costuming of the children, the overall effect was of self-consciously crafted perfection. The children, of course, are innocents. They are dressed by their parents. And through their clothes choices, the parents have created the kind of honeyed faultlessness that jams mailboxes every December when personalized Christmas cards arrive bringing greetings "to you and yours" from the Blake family or the Joneses. Everyone looks freshly scrubbed and adorable, just like they have stepped from a Currier & Ives landscape.

In a time when most children are dressed in Gap Kids and retailers of similar price-point and modernity, the parents put young master Jack in an ensemble that calls to mind John F. "John-John" Kennedy Jr.

Separate the child from the clothes, which do not acknowledge trends, popular culture or the passing of time. They are not classic; they are old-fashioned. These clothes are Old World, old money and a cut above the light-up/shoe-buying hoi polloi/.

Like too many people in the fashion industry and publications, Givhan wears her politics on her sleeve, and we know it.  We're so over all these culture warriors.

It seems that everything in the Washington Post is designed to advance Democrats and deride and embarrass their opponents.  The nastiest examples of these are the work of Robin Givhan, the paper's fashion editor.  Her cruelty and bias have been evident for years.  If the Pulitzer Prizes had any shame, they'd blush at having given her an award in 2006 for "witty, closely observed essays that transform fashion criticism into cultural criticism."

Yes, on notable rare occasions, she pokes fun at Democrats, as she did in a 2007 piece mocking a V-shaped neckline Hillary wore.  On the other hand, she absolutely gushed over the outfits worn by Michelle Obama, but for a memorable dig when Michelle stepped off a plane wearing shorts and looking very messy.

When some fashion designers said they'd refuse to dress Melania Trump, she rushed to their defense:

Critics of those designers who've voiced their reluctance to dress the new first lady have maintained that it's a designer's job to simply make clothes – that they should keep personal opinions out of it and not pass judgment on people who wear their clothes. But over time, society has demanded much more from the fashion industry. It expects Seventh Avenue to be cognizant of its impact on young women predisposed to eating disorders. It rallied against the industry's lack of diversity. It has pressured the industry to concern itself with the labor practices of its subcontractors and to create clothes that empower women instead of objectify them.

Society expects fashion to be philanthropic and awake to the world in which it exists. So doesn't taking a stand on a new administration and its policies – in the most direct manner possible – fall into that category?

The designers based in New York's Garment District and scattered around the city are, by and large, not personal dressmakers, or haute couture houses making one-of-a-kind garments for individuals. When they do something for a single customer – typically a celebrity – they are stepping outside the day-to-day business model of their company. Anyone with disposable income can buy a designer's wares at retail – and even some red-carpet celebrities choose to do so. Hayden Panettiere purchased a Tom Ford gown for the 2014 Golden Globes. For the 2016 Globes, Bryce Dallas Howard picked up her Jenny Packham gown at Neiman Marcus.

That's why declining to dress a celebrity is not the equivalent of refusing service. In doing so, designers would in fact be refusing a favor, with all the publicity that goes along with it.

What about patriotism? Should personal feelings and personal satisfaction be put aside out of respect for the symbolism of the first lady? Not necessarily. Protest that grows out of a desire to make the country better, to push it to live up to its ideals, is surely a form of patriotism.

Now she aims her rapier at Melania Trump's "airbrushed" official portrait.  She concedes that Michelle's portrait might have been airbrushed, too – how could she not when it shows the former first lady with what appears to be a 20-inch waist (a trick used by both Vogue and Glamour on at least one occasion)?  But she suggests that Melania's complexion – which to my eyes always looks smooth and unblemished – is different:

Both former first ladies are photographed in a flattering light. Airbrushed? Probably. Nearly all portraits are touched up – a little or a lot. But the effect wasn't obvious.

Mahaux has given the public a two-dimensional version of Trump: just the gloss, just the facade. Trump is the fantasy, the dream. She's not trying to speak to the judgmental types who are quick to sneer at new money, but to folks who would be thrilled to have all that crisp, fresh cash loaded into the back of a fancy car with gold rims.

She has given them virtual realty. An Instagram first lady. And maybe that's good enough. But she has not given them Melania Trump.

Her most savagely nasty comments were for Mrs. Alito's wardrobe choice.  As you may recall, the Alito hearings were nasty and brought the now-justice's wife to tears.  The Alitos were people of modest means, and the confirmation hearings stretched on.  Givhan surely added to the distress of Mrs. Alito, who, after all, is neither a fashion model nor even a political figure.  She was the wife of a candidate for the Supreme Court who was being unfairly tarred.  Was it really necessary to poke fun at her?

His wife's ensembles varied among casual tan slacks with a sweater, bright red anything, and a brown tweed suit and blouse that seemed to be coordinated with a rigor more commonly found in Garanimals. She liked to accessorize with pearls, gold chains, earrings, bracelets and rings. Sometimes she'd wear this treasure trove of jewelry all at once. She was particularly fond of a brooch that resembled nothing more closely than a half-peeled banana. (It could have been a fleur-de-lis, but only as it might be drawn by a 5-year-old.) ...

There was something charmingly awkward about her blue cardigan. A cable-knit cardigan! At a Senate hearing! The sweater has all those connotations of Dan Rather informality, softness, ease and grandmotherly coziness. It is the antithesis of power and strength. The sweater was also baby blue. That isn't clothing as armor, but clothing as security blanket. Remember Linus?

It was as though the nominee's wife had quietly brought her own binky into the room. But then, who couldn't use a little comfort during such a public ordeal?

When Michelle Obama took to wearing cardigans – which she did even to Buckingham Palace to visit the queen – Givhan considered the cardigan look insouciant and wonderful, although the late Oscar de la Renta and others considered it too casual for the occasion.  Unsurprisingly, Givhan shifted her view.

Her way of dressing has resonated with American women, says Robin Givhan, the Pulitzer Prize-winning fashion critic for the Washington Post.

"One of the really vital things that Michelle Obama has done, is she's wearing real fashion," says Givhan, who covered the first lady for her first year in the White House. Mrs. Obama's decision to wear consciously un-corporate looks, Givhan says, "was her own use of fashion as a way of defining who she was going to be in the White House."

Mrs. Obama was going to continue being what she had been – a working wife and mother, wearing what she liked, what was comfortable and what worked for her. In doing that, Givhan says, the first lady was not so much initiating change as reflecting how women around the country already had begun to change their own look – dresses instead of suits, sweaters instead of jackets, bare legs instead of pantyhose. Those choices struck a plangent note.

"When Michelle Obama came along and made all these  things a matter of course," Givhan says, "I think it validated a lot of things they were doing, and also validated things that they wanted to do but often felt they weren't allowed to."

Even how Republicans dress their children is a topic of her partisan bile.  When John Roberts's wife and children appeared for his swearing in, she wrote:

The wife wore a strawberry-pink tweed suit with taupe pumps and pearls, which alone would not have been particularly remarkable, but alongside the nostalgic costuming of the children, the overall effect was of self-consciously crafted perfection. The children, of course, are innocents. They are dressed by their parents. And through their clothes choices, the parents have created the kind of honeyed faultlessness that jams mailboxes every December when personalized Christmas cards arrive bringing greetings "to you and yours" from the Blake family or the Joneses. Everyone looks freshly scrubbed and adorable, just like they have stepped from a Currier & Ives landscape.

In a time when most children are dressed in Gap Kids and retailers of similar price-point and modernity, the parents put young master Jack in an ensemble that calls to mind John F. "John-John" Kennedy Jr.

Separate the child from the clothes, which do not acknowledge trends, popular culture or the passing of time. They are not classic; they are old-fashioned. These clothes are Old World, old money and a cut above the light-up/shoe-buying hoi polloi/.

Like too many people in the fashion industry and publications, Givhan wears her politics on her sleeve, and we know it.  We're so over all these culture warriors.

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