Michelle Obama has a body pride I love

michellewhitehouse1I love the fact First Lady Elect Michelle Obama is fashion forward with her choice of clothes. I adore the fact she doesn’t mind showing off “what her mama gave her” and wearing clothes that accentuate her daring shape and not opting for the traditional conservative look of the most recent first ladies that have come before her. It is interesting to read that designers are excited about the marketing prowess of designing signature pieces inspired by the soon to be first lady. Will these pieces and lines be targeted for the African American woman? Or will the designers tactfully market the pieces and lines inspired by Michelle Obama for the American woman? It will be interesting see what fashion models will be wearing these newly created Michelle designs. Will these models look like me? While reading the WSJ- Saturday, 6 December 2008 – the article entitled Over-40 Finds a Muse. Talks about how difficult it is to dress women over 40, I am not 40 yet, however I do work in an industry where business appropriate clothing is the standard. Not in the office I tend to be trendier opting for designer jeans, fitted t-shirts and fashion forwards blazers and accessories. So why it so difficult to dress the woman over 40? After years of unsuccessful attempts to satisfy middle-aged women — a high-spending but difficult-to-please demographic — the U.S. apparel industry is rejoicing that it has finally found its muse – Mrs. Obama.

maliamom2Women over 35 spent an estimated $53.2 billion of the $109 billion in women’s apparel purchases for the 12 months ended in September, according to market researcher NPD Group. By comparison, women from the ages of 18 to 34 spent only $37.3 billion (girls from 13 to 17 spent the rest).

Apparel makers appreciate that Mrs. Obama — unlike many Hollywood celebrities on the fashion industry radar screen — has realistic proportions. I love this! She is a shapely woman, yes and she looks good in a dress! And she dresses in accessible mall brands, like J. Crew and White House Black Market, as well as in higher-priced designer labels like Maria Pinto and Thakoon. This pretty much signifies my style, I’m a JCrewaholic and at times I may splurge and spend a little bit more on some of my clothing pieces. “One thing I love about her is that she isn’t a stick figure and not a plus size,” says Mr. Mizrahi. “She has a body pride I love.” You have to love Issac Mizrahi from Broooooklyn!!! His comment is spot on!

New York designer Elie Tahari invited retail buyers to his showroom this past week to unveil his latest sartorial confection: a $598 purple-floral sheath that he has named “the Michelle dress,” after Michelle Obama. Elie tahari is another favorite designer of mine….I go way back with Tahari – to the early 90’s when my girlfriend was a pattern maker for Tahari, I would shop at the WFC for suits to wear to work. Nowadays, I shop occasionally at Eie Tahari as I find their pants do not fit my shape. I’m a pants suit fanatic. There pants are not cut for the African American woman. I do however, have two suits from Elie Tahari that I did not wear for an entire season because I’ve gained too much weight and the pants do not to fit my hips and “ass”ets in a business appropriate way. I did win a raffle drawing at Elie Tahari and I have balance left to splurge on a clothing item. My most recent purchase was a pair of shoes and a sweater from Elie Tahari.

In closing, the 44-year-old future first lady’s immediate influence on fashion “has nothing to do with fashion trends,” says Mr. Tahari, who plans to put the dress in ads this spring and in stores in June. “Her style is all about the woman being noticed, not just the dress.”

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Rev. Jeremiah Wright “Obama is still my child”

President-elect Barack Obama made a “bad decision” by distancing himself from the Rev. Jeremiah Wright and his church, Wright said Sunday, 7 December 2008 – “but that’s OK.” -said Rev. Wright.

I have plenty of sympathy in my heart for Rev. Wright the way the media characterized him as an anti-American revolutionary jester. In my observations, Rev. Wright is articulate, educated and opinionated…right now…Rev. Wright needs to sit down somewhere and take a dose of humility. Rev. Wright, speaking at Trinity on its 47th anniversary, said he was proud of “the only church that produced the first and only African-American president in the 211-year history of the United States. No other church can say that.” What a great association one can make but why be boastful about it? The media is gonna trail your “ass”ets until 2013 so be careful in what you say, man! Like his comments regarding Elisabeth Hasselbeck of ABC’s “The View,” whom — while not saying her name — Wright twice referred to as a “broad,” including once as “that dumb broad.” Rev. Jeremiah Wright needs to watch how he addresses women. Seriously, “broad” and/or “dizzy broad” aren’t words I’d expect to hear from the mouth of a man of the cloth when talking about a woman.


Rev. Wright continues…”The hatred of the media and the haters in politics may have caused him to distance himself from us, but the love of Christ will never allow me to distance myself from him,” Wright said of Obama. “I can no more disown him than I can disown any other child of mine who makes [a] bad decision. He made a bad decision, but he’s still my child.” Rev. Wright what does the Bible say? Train up a child in the way he should go, Even when he is old he will not depart from it. – Proverbs 22:6 Rev. Wright you have done well by President Elect Obama, like a father pray for him with feverish reverence from now until eternity. Sacrifice your ego for humility this time for the sake of your son Barack Obama. In God’s name we pray. AMEN.

Rev. Jeremiah Wright (right) told parishioners that president-elect Barack Obama made a “bad decision” by distancing himself from Wright and the church.
(Trinity United Church of Christ/AP file)

Pay for Performance

Merrill Chairman and Chief Executive John Thain had recently suggested to directors that he get a 2008 bonus of as much as $10 million, and at one time had been lobbying for a larger number. This is outrageous! Your company has lost over $11 billion in 2008! What makes you think you are entitled to a $10 million bonus? Because you foresaw the collapse of Merrill Lynch and made moves to prevent it? But wasn’t it Stan O’Neil who made the first series of calls to BOA and began the merger talks and as a consequence was released from his duties as CEO because he failed to inform the board of his intentions.

Where I’m employed – I am measured by my performance. If I do not perform, I will not be compensated by a bonus. What is ironic?…Mr. Thain is willing to negotiate for a bonus he believes he is entitled to….when as much as 35,000 of [his] workforce will be laid off due to the BOA/Merrill Lynch merger. The Wall Street mentality has got to change…from every man for himself to…I am responsible for thousands of employees and their families. A novel idea? Huh?

Take a gander at where the net revenues go in these banks….to pay big bonuses!!!


…buh, Bye Bonus
These CEOs of banks and securities firms won’t receive a 2008 bonus:

Josef Ackermann, Deutsche

BankLloyd Blankfein, Goldman Sachs

John Mack, Morgan Stanley

Marcel Rohner, UBS

John Thain, Merrill Lynch

John Varley, Barclays

Brady Dougan, Credit Suisse Group

Have you ever asked for Driving Directions?


Comedic Brilliance. Take a gander at the video clip. Pure genius.



President-Elect Barack Obama has Mad Swagger.

Monday, 10 November 2008, I watched President-Elect Barack Obama visit the Oval Office for the very first time. The White House visit is part political ritual, part practical introduction and a striking symbol of the historic transfer of power to come.


Did you see President-Elect Barack Obama walk along the Rose Garden? I had a smile on my face, in awe watching him walk along the Colonnade and into the Oval Office. In a bit of pageantry for the cameras, the president and president-elect walked along the Colonnade and into the Oval Office. Accustomed to the protocol, Bush waved at the crowd before Obama followed suit. I noticed the subtle uneasiness when Barack had to guess what to do. Why didn’t any of his staff brief him on the protocol? The two stopped for a moment to greet spectators before walking into the Oval Office, Obama’s first visit to that storied room.


Look at President-Elect Obama with his swagger…It is a sheer delight to see. I know our brothers watching this will walk a little taller.


An open letter to the staff around President-Elect Obama: Please brief him on the Presidential etiquette from here on out so he doesn’t have to guess on what to do..Geez…Thank You.


For those of you who are reading this let me break it down….”Mad Swagger” is a colloquialism (not slang), I find it to be appropriate here for the ordinary, familiar or informal conversation…. Swagger: To walk with an air of overbearing self-confidence Mad: To an extreme degree.

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What do First Lady Michelle Obama and CNN Contributor Amy Holmes have in common?

They both wear J.Crew. J.Crew is an American brand that began in 1983 as a mail order catalog. The 1st store opened in 1989 at the South Street Seaport location in NYC. This is the location I shop at often, because it is conveniently located near where I work. J.Crew is one of my favorite places to shop. The clothes are stylish and affordable. As an African American woman it is a challenge to find clothes to fit me in a business appropriate way. I am 5’7″, I own a pair of hips and a big future behind me, which at times makes it difficult to shop for clothes. It is good to see American personalities wearing real-world, easily accessible American clothing brands.

I hope their stock rebounds as a result of all the media attention. J.Crew bought “Michelle Obama” keywords on Google, Microsoft and Yahoo, built a page on the jcrew.com Web site that promoted her outfit, and told call-center representatives how to handle queries about Mrs. Obama’s fashion. Gmail users type an e-mail message containing the word “Obama,” they often see a J. Crew text ad promoting the “Tonight Show” outfit.

Their stock is at an all-time low…mid-day trading was at $10.51 on 11/17/2008 down from their high on 6/19/2007 at a closing price of $56.63 (DOWN -538.82%). The IPO was launched on 6/28/2006 to a closing price of $25.55 (DOWN -243.10%). The IPO was the third-biggest apparel retail IPO ever, the shares rose nearly 28 percent in their trading debut after pricing higher than expected.

On November 20, 2008 UBS analyst Roxanne Meyer said in a client note Monday that New York-based J.Crew has proven not to be immune to the weakening economic environment. The company has “solid” product execution but there have been more promotions during the quarter than planned, Meyer said. “Although we think product is appealing, we believe J.Crew’s heightened exposure to basic ‘classic’ items and to the New York-metro area will weigh on sales,” Meyer wrote. “Promotional levels have been high in the third quarter, which we see as incremental to current guidance.” The promotions have been plentiful as of recently, I guess this is a tactic to sustain momentum in this hear economy.

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What a Difference a Year Makes…It’s a New Day.

So, I have not blogged in quite sometime…Now I am ready to make blogging a part of my routine. So much is going on in my world today…We have a new President-Elect Barack Obama….So many people have stated…I never thought I would see this day in “my lifetime“…..I never thought I wouldn’t see this day….see a man of color as the President of the United States of America in my lifetime….I am keenly aware of the fact that….just because he is the first African American President…this doesn’t mean we will have countless others (presidential candidates) in the years to come…What it does mean is….those that follow in his footsteps to run for the presidency of the United States of America will be seen as formidable candidates and their campaign(s) will not be looked upon as a symbolic gesture. Prospective presidential candidates will inevitably have to step their game up because Barack Obama has changed the game.

Rosa Parks sat so that Martin Luther King, Jr. could walk. Martin Luther King, Jr. walked so Barack Obama could run. Barack Obama ran so our children and those to come will fly.

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To Brine A Turkey.

This Thanksgiving Holiday I spent it at my Grandmother’s house with family and friends. The weather was unseasonably warm, I believe it got as high as 66 degrees and that is an anomaly in my ‘hood for this time of year. My cousin and I made Thanksgiving dinner. I brined a turkey for the first time. The turkey came out delicious to say the very least. I was a bit apprehensive because I didn’t want the turkey to be too salty and give some more black folks high blood pressure which may lead to heart disease. Who wants to contribute to the statistics on black on black crime – not me! My grandmother did make a slight comment about the salt; however she ate the turkey as if it was the best thing on God’s green earth. I had to cook the turkey for about “a day” it seemed because I put too much “stuff” in the cavity. Lesson learned I will not do that again. I used the apple cider turkey brine which I purchased from William Sonoma. I’m glad I purchased the brine bags at the same time as I would not know what to brine the turkey in – my mop pail? – that would not be a good choice – the Clorox residue sure wouldn’t mix well with the brine solution. The brine smells heavenly and got me excited about the process. I’m cooking again Christmas so I will be brining another turkey – I can not wait for the delightful results. Overall the dinner was absolutely fabulous and every day after Thanksgiving I looked forward to eating “leftovers” until they were all gone…What a great Thanksgiving day! I’m truly thankful for all things…brined.

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Welcome to Rochelle’s World!

I’ve decided to join the Blog revolution and journal life through my colorful existence. I welcome your presence as we take this journey together. Hold on tight we may get lost along the way and the ride may be bumpy however end the end the destination will be just the beginning of our next journey together. Enjoy.

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