Well. We can't keep waiting around for the next paparazzi pix of Michelle Obama. And we figure she's just about over all that, anyway. And we figure she's starting to get a little anxious about all that packing and clearing out. She's probably renting out her lovely Hyde Park, Ill., manse, and that means getting those closets emptied out.
Where to start?
How about with her own closet? Here's where we can really help. Like the rest of us, Michelle probably has 1) at least one coat left over from college, with shoulder pads like the ones on this blue dress 2) a couple maternity outfits — because, oh, hell, you just never know, and 3) at least one stunning, expensive and one-of-a-kind — indeed, irreplaceable — silk skirt marred by a pen mark or red wine stain that even that the best dry cleaner and the most creative at-home cleaning techniques couldn't remove.
Out with them all, I say! Michelle, you are on your way to becoming the most photographed woman in the world. You don't want the coat, the cute Pea in the Pod cocktail dress, or the ink-stained skirt. You will never wear them again.
You also won't need those so-so capris you used to wear while gardening but which, frankly, have seen better days. The Bermuda shorts that were your go-to weekend shorts — in the early 90s. The shoes that were really cute — 10 years ago. That other pair of shoes — over there, in the corner of the closet — that were really, really expensive and so beautiful. But the heel broke on one of them and you don't know where it is. And there's more. Do you have the sneaking suspicion that that fuschia sweater doesn't make you look your best? You might be right — find a new home for it! Or those too-trendy pants you got a few years ago, which still have the tag on them? Someone else will be glad to have them.
We hate to be the bearer of bad tidings, but those things must go. Be ruthless and strong — you will be so much happier traveling light. And you'll be so busy — imagine how great it would be to open your closet in the morning and see only clothes you adore.
As for the outcasts: You could sell them on eBay and donate the proceeds to charity. But I wouldn't. You are part of a brand now and doing something like that just isn't part of the larger picture. Give them to someone who can use them (or simply throw them out if they're torn, really ratty, or otherwise damaged). You will be able to travel into your new life unburdened by the has-beens of your previous life, and that can be really liberating.
And here's the thing: You are embarking on the most exciting (and busy) chapter of your life. You need to be armed and ready. To do that, you'll need to make room for the new Maria Pintos you're going to want, the luxe suits I'm going to recommend, like these (by Tevrow and Chase, above, and Donna Karan, below) and the flirty skirt-and-sweater outfits you'll want, like this from J. Crew.
Next time: some shopping advice for Michelle once she's here in DC.