Representatives of the Obama family worked directly with J. Crew to design multiple inaugural pieces that fit the First Family’s deliberate classic-but-affordable image, the company tells the Chicago Tribune. Despite a few complaints, the Obamas’ unofficial hard-times designer has emerged strong from the inauguration festivities—seeing a 10% stock bump after the personalized pieces debuted.
“This was a very shrewd move, going to a store that isn’t really cheap but is affordable to lots of people,” says one insider. “Allowing J. Crew to roll it out later so we can all have it is a win-win.” The company caught flak because Sasha’s and Malia’s colorful coats, Michelle’s gloves, and Barack’s bow tie weren’t immediately available; all are now slated for a fall release.