Michelle Obama For Vogue US April 2013

Michelle Obama Vogue April 2013

When rumours surfaced that Annie Leibovitz had shot First Lady, Michelle Obama, wearing a Reed Krakoff dress and Kimberly McDonald earrings for the cover of the April 2013 issue of American Vogue, I was excited to see the end result.

That disappeared, somewhat, when I saw the cover to find that she had been heavily airbrushed.

Her sleek black Michael Kors Pre-Fall look in the editorial managed to make up for my cover disappointment.

In the magazine, Michelle talks about being a parent, her marriage to Barack Obama, inspiring America, her relationship with fashion, and living their lives on their terms: not the First Family but family first.

Here are some extracts from her interview.

On the importance of family: “Our job is, first and foremost, to make sure our family is whole. You know, we have small kids; they’re growing every day. But I think we were both pretty straightforward when we said, ‘Our No. 1 priority is making sure that our family is whole’.”

On her mother, Marian: “My mother doesn’t do interviews but let me tell you: she is not long on pretense. She’s the first one to remind us who we are. And it’s been very helpful having her living with us. . . We can check reality against her sensibilities.”

On what she’s learned from her husband, President Barack Obama: “Well, patience and calm I’m borrowing. Or trying to mirror. I’ve learned that from my husband, that sort of, you know, ability to not get too high or too low with changes and bumps in the road. . . to do more breathing in and just going with it. I’m learning that every day. And to the extent that I’ve made changes in my life, it’s just sort of stepping back and seeing a change not as something to guard against but as a wonderful addition. . . that can make life fun and unexpected.”

Credit: Annie Leibovitz for Vogue US

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  • DM

    Weave fail.

  • EmmaWoodhouse

    I only like the dresses.

  • Beta

    Michelle Obama is Fabulous! I love her fashion forward and always event appropriate style.

    and agree with you Catherine, Vogue needs to cut down on photoshop.
    And the generic bland covers IMO.
    Maybe that’s what sells, I dont know, but I’d enjoy a more fashion forward approach, and maybe using models (gasp!) instead of the celebrity du jour

  • Saree

    I’m not saying Michelle is to blame, I’m sure Vogue have some pretty strict regulations on what a photograph must look like for the final editorial.

    But for someone who campaigns so rigorously for a healthier America, namely what children and people generally eat, I also consider ‘health’ to be quite broad, in terms of the extent people go to to look healthy and ‘beautiful’. Airbrushing negates that – we have pores, no matter how much make up we wear, pores are visible and photoshop removes that.

    I would like to think the First Lady was not shown the final editorial, however I cannot believe they didn’t run it past the White House first. Whilst there is still more ‘fighting’ with body weight issues in fashion and with models – the industry need to also realise these depictions of people are greatly influencing others, especially younger people too. Celebrities, especially politicians, usually like to be depicted like everyday folk, so why not start emulating yourself in that way too, cause after all, no matter your wealth or status, you have pores! Oh and that arm and head look too awkward for a Vogue cover.

  • Prudence

    AHHH FINALLY SOMEONE AMAZING ON A COVER!! and yes, why soo much airbushing shes stunning! god, anna wintour and her obsession with airbushing is such a problem. I do wish the michael kors dress would have been the cover cuz that is AMAZING.

  • Yasmine

    I love the dress on the cover, and I look forward to the day that African American women of her stature (grace & intelligence) embrace their hair.

    I really think its beautiful the way the likes of Solange knowles have it, I have wavy, not even curly hair and would love to have the confidence to walk out of the house without frying it with an expensive hair straightener.

  • pipsqueak

    After Michelle, we won’t have another first lady that’s as intelligent, stylish or accomplished (professionally and academically) for a long while. It doesn’t matter we elect a Republican or Democratic president. Michelle is rare. Most first ladies are either housewives or in education. Michelle is a business executive that also knows how to dress – a whole package of a modern woman, which some people may call “elitist” (they’re just jealous). Perfection!

    • Anj

      Eh, I’m not knocking her intelligence but I think it’s insulting to females to say there will be no one better than her in said aspects. It’s also insulting to assume that being in education or being a housewife as a default makes you stupid, unstylish, and unaccomplished. That’s a very narrow and final point of view. I think you need to realize that the reason most first ladies were housewives is because women haven’t had the equality in the job force until recently and not actually equally even now so that’s not really a good point to make. Anyway, next time, hopefully there will be a first man and the next President will be female. Maybe that’s something better to hope for. As lovely as the First Lady looks and carries herself, she is not the First Lady to be so and most assuredly will not be the last.

      • Kathy

        +1 Anj, well said

  • Neli


  • Ruth

    What a stunning woman. The second picture in the long green gown, just wow. Leibovitz did an amazing job picking a beautiful colour palette to surround Michelle with. What an amazing couple, I wish nothing but the best to them.

  • Louisa

    Flotus, YOU ARE BEAUTIFUL, no matter what they say.
    She looks great on this cover.

    • MandaLynne

      Of course she looks great – she has been airbrushed as to be almost unrecognizable.

  • dee

    I like the photo of her and Barack.

    • Beta

      +1 yes, really cute 🙂

  • Christine

    Not liking the cover. Airbrushing needs to stop.

    • gurlygurl

      +1 When will they learn we know these faces! I don’t even know how these photoshoppers get jobs with such terrible handy work. It’s a let down 🙁

      • Christine

        Agreed. It’s getting out of hand. Beyond offensive.

        There was no need to airbrush her face/body. Ridiculous.

    • Anj

      Annie Leibovitz takes the photograph out of photographer. This is her thing and it’s not something to be proud of. If I were a photographer, I would be embarrassed to call her a peer even if she’s famous and photographs well-known people. She should just be called a graphic designer or photoshop expert. Her photographs always look like knock-off paintings. She should just stick to fantasy-based projects and steer clear from assuming she depicts any sort of realism in her work.

      • Beta

        Im a huge fan of her 90s work, her demi moore pic for example and that time. But agree with you on all points. The excess photoshop is really annoying

  • Yeliz

    I do like these photos but her right hand on the dress looks so unreal.

  • Iris

    what. have. they. done. to. FLOTUS? 🙁

    • Catherine Kallon

      I know … it is killing me

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