Michelle Obama made a statement — both in art and in real life — during the unveiling of her and former president Barack Obama’s White House portrait unveiling.
Accompanied by her husband in the White House’s East Room, the former first lady arrived in a sweeping short-sleeved dress. The belted number included an ombre palette of red and magenta accented by allover pleats, creating an elegant two-toned moment. Completing her ensemble were gold beaded drop earrings.
In her portrait, painted by artist Sharon Sprung, Obama can be seen in a sweeping ice blue gown by Jason Wu with a ruched bodice and off-the-shoulder sleeves. Barack’s portrait, by artist Robert McCurdy; each were painted from photographs the artists respectively took.
Regarding footwear, the “Becoming” author opted to wear a pair of pointed-toe pumps for the occasion. Her style, featuring stiletto heels and brown suede uppers, provided a neutral base that allowed her dress’ jewel tones to take center stage for the momentous occasion.
“I’m thrilled that this extraordinary work is going to be enshrined forever as part of our nation’s history, but Sharon, it was wonderful to work with you,” Obama said during a speech at the unveiling’s press conference. “You are a true spirit — that’s one of the reasons why we connected — your work is phenomenal, but it was your essence, your soul, the way you saw me, the way we interacted, and it shows in this beautiful work. So, thank you for your brilliance, your artistry and your patience.”
You can watch the portrait unveiling and Obama’s statement on MSNBC’s YouTube channel, below:
When it comes to shoes, Obama’s pairs range from preppy to bold. The former first lady often wears glamorous and chic heels for formal and speaking events, ranging from Jimmy Choo peep-toed styles to neon Stuart Weitzman pumps and sequined Balenciaga boots. She’s also known for incorporating affordable shoes into her wardrobe from brands like Zara and Converse. When off-duty, Obama frequently wears leather sneakers, sandals and sharp flats.
Click through the gallery to see Obama’s first lady looks over the years.