Dr. Jill Biden joined husband President Joe Biden for their first-ever international tour during their term in office last week, and the first lady used the opportunity to make a statement with her style.
For her first look arriving to the United Kingdom, Dr. Biden chose a buttoned blue blazer and a white dress to match her navy suede pumps. While many former first ladies typically wore classic shoes style from major labels such as Jimmy Choo, Manolo Blahnik and Christian Louboutin for such engagements, Biden chose independent American shoe designer Marion Parke.
Parke, who debuted her namesake shoe brand for spring ’16, is fairly new to the shoe industry and has been in growth mode. Soon after launching her line, Parke made noise in the industry as a former podiatric surgeon creating comfortable, luxury Italian shoes for women. What sets her apart from similar luxury labels is her patented technology that include unique insoles, which are sculpted to follow the natural contour and curvature of the bottom of the foot, arch support, added material to support the rearfoot and ankle, as well as medical grade material for cushioning. This caught the attention of retailers such as Neiman Marcus and Bloomingdale’s, as well as Shopbop and Bergdorf Goodman.
The label has also seen success through its own e-commerce site and with the first lady’s recent endorsement, Parke has seen an increase in traffic over the past week to her website and more customers are searching for and purchasing pumps, she said.
“It has been so exciting to see the first lady of the United States wearing our shoes and it is truly humbling to know that she continues to reach for them time and time again,” Parke told FN. “I think it is absolutely wonderful that the First Lady chooses to support independent female American designers and it has been an honor to be included.”
Dr. Biden wore the designer again during the G7 Summit last week, including when she met Queen Elizabeth II. For the occasion, she re-wore the navy Must Have 85 Pumps paired with a Gabriela Hearst trench coat.
Prior to the meeting, Dr. Biden opted for the Marion Parke’s Mina Pump in red suede while walking along the boardwalk at the start of the summit.
Other independent female designers the first lady is supporting is Marina Larroudé and Alexandra O’Neill, among others.