Shakeup in First Lady's fashion shop

I'm sure you'll be glad to hear that your tax dollars are being spent wisely by Michele Obama.

She has deep sixed her regular fashion expert and hired someone who is now drawing a government salary in the White House. The Washington Post:

On Tuesday night last week, Ikram Goldman, the celebrated stylist of Michelle Obama, took her front-row seat at the Lincoln Center runway show of one of the first lady's preferred designers, Narciso Rodriguez.


Having Michelle Obama as a mega-client earned Goldman this spotlight, but according to several people with knowledge of her White House arrangement, she is no longer the shopper in chief.

That coveted role is now played by Goldman's former protegee and current White House employee, Meredith Koop. The ascent of the 29-year-old personal assistant has caught the imagination of Fashion Week gossips, East Wing obsessives and "All About Eve" fans for weeks. A former Vanderbilt University sorority sister, Koop learned fashion gospel at the altar of Ikram, Goldman's eponymous Chicago boutique. Two years ago, when Michelle Obama left for Washington, Goldman dispatched Koop as an emissary, attending to the first lady's dressing needs inside the family residence. Koop has taken full advantage of proximity to power. Her portfolio has expanded, at the expense of her mentor. This season Koop is in, and Goldman is out.

Koop is employed by the White House. It may be "unfashionable" to ask, but why does the First Lady need a taxpayer funded fashion consultant?

Could be she's a clothes horse:

Givhan reported that since the end of the summer, the role of cultivating "New York designers for a first lady whose wardrobe needs are relentless" had fallen to Koop. (Koop's previous visibility was limited to a mention in a short April 2010 piece as Obama's "secret style weapon.") 

I may be mistaken. Other first ladies may have had a staffer dedicated exclusively to making sure that a first lady's "relentless" clothes needs are met. But it would be news to me if that were the case. Nancy Reagan had a relationship with designers similar to Michele Obama's friendship with Goldman. The payoff for the designer was not in getting a taxpayer funded paycheck, but in seeing their designs worn by a highly visible celebrity.

I guess that's just not good enough for our nutritionist in chief.

Hat Tip: Ed Lasky