Story on the Obamas and black fashion in French Elle magazine offends many

The French version of Elle magazine published a piece last week by their fashion writer/blogger Nathalie Dolivo that is causing a flap this week. In essence Dolivo said the black community in the U.S. lacked real fashion sense until the Obamas arrived.
The passage from the piece that has offended perhaps the most reads: “In this America, led for the first time by a black president, chic has become a plausible option for a community (the African-American community) that up until now pegged to its streetwear codes.” Dolivo also wrote that since the arrival of the Obamas on the scene black fashion has grown by adopting “white codes of fashion.”
Reaction from Elle’s French editor
With a storm of negative reaction to Dolivos’s remarks, the French Elle has taken the story down from its website but has not apologized. The Italian version of Vogue magazine reports that Elle’s french editor-in-chief, Valérie Toranian, has stated that the influence of Michelle Obama on black fashion in America was comparable to the influence Kate Middleton has had on fashion in the U.K. or Jackie Kennedy on American fashion in the 60’s.

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Nyesha Samuel, Publisher/Master Loctician for

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1 thought on “Story on the Obamas and black fashion in French Elle magazine offends many

  1. Absurd to say the least… these people need to do their research before posting such trash. Have they not seen movies featuring black people from back in the day with women like Dorothy Dandridge and Lena Horne to name a couple.. we as a people who came to this country as slaves have for the most part cared deeply about our appearance. Style and fashion has been a way not only to help us express ourselves, but also to cause us to be able to hold our heads high. I was raised by a Baptist preacher who never stepped outside without and suit and a dress hat. His wife never wore slacks ever. I read fashion magazines when in Jr. High during trips to the library, (including Elle). I am sooo amazed that these people think we all only dress “street”.

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