Is Ralph Lauren Going to Be Hillary Clinton’s Dresser in Chief?
Has Hillary Clinton found her dresser in chief? It would appear that way.
While the Twitterverse was busy parsing the possible subtexts of Melania Trump’s decision to wear a hot pink Gucci pussy-bow blouse to watch her husband, Donald J. Trump, during the second presidential debate Sunday evening (given his recently revealed lewd comments about women from 2005), it was actually what Mrs. Clinton wore that seemed meaningful to me.
梅拉尼娅·特朗普(Melania Trump) 选择穿玫粉色古驰(Gucci)蝴蝶结衬衫，观看丈夫唐纳德·J·特朗普(Donald J. Trump)参加周日晚上的第二次总统候选人辩论会，Twitter界忙着分析这其中有什么潜在的涵义（背景是特朗普最近被曝出曾在2005年对女性发表不雅言辞[他当时提及pussy，英文中针对女性性器官的一个通俗说法，而蝴蝶结亦可称为pussy bow——译注]），然而，对于我来说，希拉里·克林顿的着装才更有意义。
Specifically, her use of a Ralph Lauren navy wool double-faced pantsuit with a cream shawl collar and cream wool top to better frame the jovial-serenity-atop-policy-wonk approach with which she has chosen to contrast herself with Mr. Trump.
See, she also wore Ralph Lauren to the first presidential debate (a red trouser suit), to her speech accepting her party’s nomination at the Democratic National Convention (an ivory suit), and to her opening campaign rally on Roosevelt Island (a periwinkle blue suit). In other words, she has worn Ralph Lauren for most of her recent major televised public appearances.
If three is a trend, as they say, four would be what? Commitment? A very clear pattern, to say the least.
This matters both because of what it means now and what it suggests about how Mrs. Clinton is using clothing to bolster her own narrative, and because of what it means for the future. After all, if she wins the election, it will be up to someone to help craft the image of the first female president of the United States. And thus far, despite the fact that a spokeswoman said the company would not comment on the relationship, evidence is beginning to build that that someone will be Mr. Lauren.
After all, during the 2008 campaign, Mrs. Clinton had no clear allegiance to any one designer. And though she has worn other designers over the many months of this campaign (including Giorgio Armani), and though during her time as secretary of state Mrs. Clinton often wore jackets from the designer Nina McLemore, the increasing choice of Mr. Lauren as the current go-to name and the ability of the clothes to flatter the candidate without calling attention to themselves make it very likely that the pattern will continue.
毕竟，在2008年的竞选中，克林顿并没有特别忠于哪位设计师。尽管她在这次漫长的竞选中也穿过其他设计师的服装（包括乔治·阿玛尼[Giorgio Armani]），而且她在担任国务卿期间也经常穿设计师妮娜·麦克勒莫尔(Nina McLemore)的外套，然而在当下，劳伦愈来愈经常地为她提供着装，他的时装既能让这位候选人看上去不错，又不至于喧宾夺主，因此这个模式很可能会继续延续下去。
Certainly it would make sense, from both a historical and a professional point of view. First ladies from Jacqueline Kennedy (with Oleg Cassini) to Nancy Reagan (with Adolfo) often allied themselves with a single designer, both as a collaborator in shaping the style of the administration, and for simplicity’s sake. President Obama said in an interview with Vanity Fair during his first term in office that the fewer decisions he had to make every day, the more he could concentrate on political priorities. And one of the easiest places for anyone to reduce options is in the wardrobe. Put simply, the president has more important things to worry about than clothes. Which doesn’t mean they don’t matter.
从历史角度和职业角度来看，这当然很有意义。从青睐奥莱格·卡西尼(Oleg Cassini)的杰奎琳·肯尼迪(Jacqueline Kennedy)到钟意阿道夫(Adolfo)的南希·里根(Nancy Reagan)，第一夫人们经常与某一位设计师结盟，一方面是以合作者的身份打造该届政府的时尚风格，一方面也是为了从简起见。奥巴马总统(President Obama)在第一任期内接受《名利场》(Vanity Fair)采访时说，他每天做的决定愈少，就愈能集中精力处理政治要务。对于任何人来说，衣柜都不失为一个最容易帮你减少选择的地方。简而言之，比起操心穿什么衣服来说，总统还有更重要的事情要担心。但这不意味着服装就不重要。
Indeed, Ralph Lauren is an interesting choice for Mrs. Clinton, both aesthetically and strategically.
Mr. Lauren is, perhaps, the most ur-American of American designers: a man who built an empire on the mythology of the untrammeled West, where cowboys roamed free among herds of bison, along with a kind of “Brideshead Revisited” Anglo past. He is a man who takes his bow at the end of his show in cowboy boots and jeans, who owns a ranch with tepees so luxurious they made Oprah Winfrey green with envy when she visited. A man who dresses the United States Olympic team for the opening and closing ceremonies, and who (because he got in trouble, admittedly) is now doing so in Made-in-America stuff. A man who gave $13 million in 1998 for the restoration of the original Star-Spangled Banner. Born in the Bronx, a man who started his career as a tie salesman, he is the stereotypical American success story.
劳伦或许是美国设计师中最具有早期美国(ur-American)色彩的了：他的帝国建立在一个自由自在的西部神话基础之上：牛仔们在牛群中漫游，还有一种《故园风雨后》(Brideshead Revisited)的美国白人历史感。在自己的走秀结束后，他总是身穿牛仔靴和牛仔裤出来鞠躬，他拥有一片牧场，里面有豪华的印第安人圆锥形帐篷，令来访的奥普拉·温弗瑞(Oprah Winfrey)也不禁艳羡不已。美国奥运代表团在开幕式和闭幕式上也是穿他的服装，而且他现在还在致力于推动美国制造（虽然说这是因为他遇到麻烦了）。1998年，他捐献了1300万美元，用来修复最原始的星条旗。他出生在布朗克斯，是领带推销员出身，真是典型的美国成功故事。
He is also Mrs. Clinton’s peer: He is in his mid-70s and will have experienced many of the same social and political upheavals as she has.
What he is not, however, is young, a hyphenate (such as Cuban-American or Asian-American), in need of the publicity, or even a very adventurous designer — all hallmarks of the choices made by the current political style-setter in the White House, Michelle Obama. Mrs. Obama has used her public profile to support new American names, to further disseminate the idea of the United States as a melting pot, and to otherwise expand the definition of a first lady.
(He is also not — duh — European, which sounds ridiculous but also distinguishes Mrs. Clinton from Mr. Trump, who favors Brioni suits, and whose wife, Melania, has worn the Italian label Fendi and the British label Roksanda Ilincic while supporting her husband, as well as the aforementioned Gucci.)
And though it seems Mr. Lauren is the establishment choice, given both his dominant position in the fashion world and the noncontroversial politesse of his clothes — which could be construed as a bad choice for Mrs. Clinton, given the clear desire on the part of so much of the electorate to upend the Washington establishment — he has, in fact, never been much of a White House presence (a black dress worn by Mrs. Obama to a British state dinner aside). That honor often went to Oscar de la Renta, who died in 2014 but who had dressed first ladies from Mrs. Kennedy to Laura Bush during his career.
考虑到他在时尚界的重要地位，以及他的时装那种毫无争议的礼貌气质，劳伦看似是掌权者的必然选择——不过这对于克林顿来说，也可能被视为一种糟糕的选择，鉴于太多选民颠覆华盛顿权贵阶层的明确愿望——事实上，他的服装很少在白宫出现（只有一次例外，奥巴马夫人穿过一次劳伦的黑色连衣裙出席英国国宴）。为白宫着装的荣誉通常归于2014年去世的奥斯卡·德拉伦塔(Oscar de la Renta)，在他的事业生涯中，曾为从肯尼迪夫人到劳拉·布什(Laura Bush)在内的多位第一夫人设计服装。
A Clinton-Lauren collaboration would have, indubitably, elegant results. She would look, if she does become president, always appropriate. Odds are that the pantsuits would continue but that they would be slightly more tailored than they have been, a bit less like coat-dresses, a little softer. Together, they would not foment sartorial revolution, or shatter the Angela Merkel mold of dressing, or change the parameters of what it means to look like a president.
That’s probably no bad thing, since the next holder of the executive office will have other eggs to break, and there’s no reason to waste political capital on clothes. As a woman, though, I can’t help but wish that something a little more radical may happen so that the feminization of power could be clear for all to see, whether they are listening to a speech or just looking at Instagram. And maybe, if Mrs. Clinton is elected, she will decide to cast her sartorial net widely, and experiment. You never know.
But either way, if Mrs. Clinton does become president, whoever dresses her will be designing the look of history. That, at least, we know for sure.