Despite having all the qualities designers usually scramble to kit-out - a slender frame, towering height, a former model and Vogue cover star, positioned in the lofty heights of politics - designers are refusing to dress Melania Trump because of her husbands polarising political views.
With the inaugural ball looming and the sartorial history that has seen FLOTUS gowns displayed in the Smithsonian's National Museum of American History for posterity, the jury is out on who will, in fact, deign to dress the First Lady.
Marc Jacobs made his position clear, telling WWD, "Personally, I'd rather put my energy into helping out those who will be hurt by Trump and his supporters." Then came Sophie Theallet, who stated, "The rhetoric of racism, sexism and xenophobia unleashed by her husband's presidential campaign are incompatible with the shared values we live by." Derek Lam then spoke out to WWD, explaining, "I find it challenging to be personally involved in dressing the new First Lady. I would rather concentrate my energies on efforts towards a more just, honourable and a mutually respectful world...but I really don't see myself getting involved with the Trump presidency." And in a facebook post, Humberto Leon of Opening Ceremony and Kenzo fired up with, "No one should [dress her], and if she buys your clothes, tell people you don't support it. You know who you are!"
When designer Tom Ford appeared on American talkshow The View in November, he explained that he'd been asked to dress Melania and had refused, explaining, "She's not necessarily my image." President-elect Donald Trump went on the defensive, explaining in an interview on Fox & Friends this week that, "[Melania] never asked Tom Ford [to dress her], doesn't like Tom Ford." He went on to say, "I'm not a fan of Tom Ford, never have been."
However, Carolina Herrera, Diane von Furstenberg, Tommy Hilfiger and Dolce & Gabbana have all expressed their interest in dressing Melania, with the latter regramming the black Dolce & Gabbana dress she wore on New Year's Eve on Instagram with - count them - five hearts.
Across the pond in Paris, the Balenciaga men's presentation was campaign-themed, with prints drawing comparisons to the logo of former presidential candidate, Bernie Sanders in what is being considered the ultimate pro-Bernie/anti-Trump fashion piece. In his personal (and hilarious) response to the collection for New York Magazine, Sanders delivers such gems as, "With all due respect to Mr. Gvasalia, who I'm sure is a terrific person, we've been wearing this look in Vermont for years," when confronted with a blue puffer-vest-and-striped-button-up combo.