Mrs-O.com is a blog dedicated to chronicling the fashion and style of First Lady Michelle Obama. Founded September 2008. 


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Jasmin Shokrian: In Detail

Photo by Yuri Gripas / Reuters

Is it just us, or does Mrs. O's wardrobe grow more exciting by the day? The recent introduction of new names and aesthetics thoroughly delights. One such fabulous example: Jasmin Shokrian.

Last week Mrs. O wore a skirt by the L.A. based designer for her appearance in front of the Corporation for National and Community Service. 

Trained at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago in film, sculpture and painting, Ms. Shokrian infuses her varied artistic background into her designs. 

Podium-pained, we were unable to get a clear view of Mrs. O's skirt, but intrigued by its description: “The fabric is primarily a vintage double silk crepe. The sheer part of the skirt is a band of handmade caught burlap thread encased in silk chiffon and navy silk charmeuse stripes juxtaposed with bands of natural cotton muslin.”

Fortunately, Ms. Shokrian had a collection photo on hand (pictured after the jump), which gives us a better sense of the wonderful detail in this piece. She was also so kind to answer a few of our questions:

Q: Mrs. O's skirt is part of your A/W 2009 collection. What was the inspiration?

JS: For me, this season was about elements of craft mixed with something futuristic. I often piece together narratives to create an imaginary story and work from that. It may be a difficult time for the world, but when we look back I think we'll find that it was a great time of evolution and creativity. This is was really got me thinking about the mix of heritage hand-crafted items and more sleek futuristic aspects. We can slow down a little and take a deeper look at what we are capable of doing and what really makes us happy. I wanted to look at all of these elements, textures I am drawn to and the feelings art can bring us.

Q: What made you mix burlap and silk chiffon, muslin and silk charmeuse?

JS: I often like to incorporate "high and low" textures, but honestly I just felt it was more symbolic at this time. I love to play with the associations that different fabrics have. Muslin and burlap are working fabrics and a bit humble, rough and architectural by association, especially in comparison to silks and delicate fabrics like chiffon.  The juxtaposition is what I'm interested in. I feel it's kind of a reflection of our everyday lives. A detailed collection photo of the Jasmin Shokrian skirt follows after the jump.

Image used with kind permission from Jasmin Shokrian

Reader Comments (116)

Oooh! Is this the first time, Mrs-o.org has interviewed a designer? What an awesome next step for a site that's already so comprehensive. The designer's comment about her fabric choices ..."incorporating high and low" immediately made me think of how Mrs. O incorporates the "high and low" into her wardrobe.

And that skirt has a TON of detailing that I didn't really notice in those far-off pictures we got to see when Mrs. O wore it. It's really lovely.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009 at 9:08 PM | Unregistered CommenterJenna

Wow! Such wonderful details.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009 at 9:38 PM | Unregistered Commenterboazwife

The bottom detailing is really worth seeing up close. I'm sure that's what Mrs. O was thinking when she picked it---burlap in silk chiffon, very creative. It looks just as intricate as a spider web in a tree---very skilled work.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009 at 10:02 PM | Unregistered CommenterJanelle

Jenna, I believe that's correct! Hopefully the first of good things to come. :o)

Tuesday, May 19, 2009 at 10:11 PM | Unregistered CommenterMrs. T

The skirt is so beautiful and artistic. It would be flattering on a variety of body types. This is possibly one of my favorite pieces from Mrs. O's wardrobe. I can't wait to see Mrs. O wear more from this designer's collection.

Agreed that interviewing designers, particularly new, fresh faces, is a great addition to this site. Thank you so much, Mrs. T. Bravo!

Tuesday, May 19, 2009 at 10:21 PM | Unregistered CommenterBevi

Jasmine Shokrian is a Persian Designer and I am sure a wonderful one for Persians have a natural feel about creative designs and especially clothing!

Tuesday, May 19, 2009 at 10:24 PM | Unregistered CommenterRoseParvin

Ooh, love this interview. It's so fun to learn more about Jasmine Shokrian. I am going to check out more of her collection. If even one piece is as amazing as this skirt I will be very, very happy. :)


Tuesday, May 19, 2009 at 11:27 PM | Unregistered CommenterCafe Fashionista

There are some wonderful pieces in that collection. I'm particularly enamoured of the jacket with side pleating. Very architectural.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009 at 11:46 PM | Unregistered CommenterHyde Parker

"Mrs. O’s wardrobe grows more exciting by the day." I could not agree more, Mrs. T! And thank you for this latest report!

Wednesday, May 20, 2009 at 12:02 AM | Unregistered CommenterInHerFashion

This is a gorgeous skirt, but I did not really like it on Mrs. O. It emphasized her hips and sort of rode up in back. Maybe if it had been tailored to fit her height it would have looked better on her. I must admit she does have very ecclectic taste in clothes.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009 at 12:35 AM | Unregistered CommenterLilly O

I love the black and navy together. Very subtle. Shokrian's color pallette is very contained - black, white, navy and a shot of violet - I like it a lot. I see more of this designer in MO's future - she has a cool and elegant aesthetic that will look great on her. I'd like to see MO in the violet dress.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009 at 12:39 AM | Unregistered CommenterOperaFanatic

Jasmin must certainly have been scrambling to update her site since your first post, Mrs. T!

Lovely work and I can imagine Michelle in many of these pieces. Wouldn't it be a kick to see her sport those belled flare trousers?

Wednesday, May 20, 2009 at 4:31 AM | Unregistered Commenterdesertwind

Lovely, lovely interview. To paraphrase a particularly cheesy advert, "With these detail's, Mrs T, you are spoiling us!"

I'm so glad that I've seen that detail on the skirt properly. I LOVE clothes that play with texture and this is a beautiful and perfect example. What lovely lovely use of colour and fabric. Numnumnum.

This struck a chord for me too: "We can slow down a little and take a deeper look at what we are capable of doing and what really makes us happy." So true. This reflects a lot of what Mrs O is all about - to me. Stop, take a look, reflect, learn, move forward.

How many of us have stopped, had a look at what Mrs O is doing, and learned something about how we're living - or not?

Wednesday, May 20, 2009 at 7:49 AM | Unregistered CommenterPosh Tater

Hyde Parker I quite agree on that jacket - I also liked the look of the white pleated top with black collar, that was gorgeous.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009 at 7:52 AM | Unregistered CommenterPosh Tater

Very interesting! Thank you for these little tidbits MrsT! I also found it interesting that is appears that this collection is not sold at our favorite store....hummmm...I am sure that will get tounges wagging!

Wednesday, May 20, 2009 at 11:56 AM | Unregistered CommenterBrook

This may sound strange, but I'm ready for MO to spend some time at home with the family. Don't get me wrong - I am not saying she's neglecting her husband or kids or mom. She's doing her job as FLOTUS and I love seeing her in public, dazzling everyone. Even when I don't adore a particular outfit, I applaud and celebrate her sartorial conviction to keep on being Michelle. I am SO proud to have her as First Lady. And, I love all the conversation here about the clothes, the speeches, the general vibe around her whole persona. I think the disagreements we express are probably more interesting than when we all agree.

But . . . I realized last night that my favorite image of the last few weeks was MO in her pony tail, snagging a burger on the fly and waving to a crowd of astounded onlookers as she dashed back to her car. It's great fun to see her dressed to the nines and out doing her job as America's First Lady. But I kind of like the times when I don't know where she is at a particular moment, or what she's wearing, but I know she's probably in a school or at a charity not enough people have heard of, doing the real work of making a difference in people's lives.

I need her to take a week off from the glitz. I don't want that side of her to take over the other, quieter side in my mind.

Does this make any sense??

Wednesday, May 20, 2009 at 12:05 PM | Unregistered CommenterOperaFanatic

Lilly O, you said: "...It emphasized her hips and sort of rode up in back." How can you tell? All I can see is a side shot from the lower left thigh to the knee. Furthermore, I believe she's leaning forward into the podium which might account for the perception of it "[riding] up in back."

Wednesday, May 20, 2009 at 12:10 PM | Unregistered Commentermarabout40

@ OperaFanatic - No, that makes absolutely no sense. Mrs. O clearly cannot win with some people. What was glitzy about the commencement speech on Saturday? What was glitzy about opening the Art museum in NY yesterday afternoon? Was she supposed to let Mr. O go to the correspondant's dinner alone? Or was she supposed to not attend the Time Magazine event even though both she AND her husband were named one of the world's most influential people? Was her Sesame Street apprearance just too glitzy as well? And I had no idea visiting schools and attending work-life family forums was considered glitzy.

I think what you have fallen into is exactly what I have been weary of for some time. The incessant focus on her clothing has dwarfed and blinded people from the substance of what she's been doing, which is "real work" and "charity."

Lastly, if Mrs. O leaves the White House to go to a school or to a charity that "not enough people have heard of," the cameras will follow, and unfortunately for you, it won't be a time you don't know of, as a result. It seems like the only things she can do without you, or any of us in the public knowing about, is when she's doing things with her kids.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009 at 12:40 PM | Unregistered CommenterIVA

Operafanatic: Mrs. O's schedule never involves more than 2-3 public events in a week. With her children in school all day, how could that possibly be too much from a self-professed, proficient multi-tasker like the first lady? What you call "glitz" events, a lot of see as substance. Every event has a purpose behind it, a worthwhile cause to promote. The behind the scenes views of Michelle and her family life, we will rarely see and rightly so. Most of us can't get enough of this fabulous, inspiring woman.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009 at 1:10 PM | Unregistered Commenteredwina


Michelle Obama is NOT a stepford wife, so no your analysis does not make sense. She does not need to sit at home beacuse you say so.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009 at 1:26 PM | Unregistered CommenterShaun

Our First Lady uses the opportunities before her, and the tools at her disposal, to communicate and effect change wherever she chooses to focus her attention. I am astounded daily by how well she walks the line. I am so impressed.

In contrast, I think of the women who choose not to volunteer and participate in my church (Catholic) because certain positions aren't open to them (yet). What would our First Lady do? I think she would do whatever was open to her in the smartest, most creative, gracious, and surprising ways imaginable and soon be the most powerful person in the room.

I can't imagine a more effective First Lady yet I know we will see just that in the months to come. Because she is constantly evolving - getting better and better at everything. She is certainly as activist, in her own way, as the President. I say keep bringing it on! I confess to missing her on the days when she's not out in public.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009 at 1:26 PM | Unregistered CommenterKiki

Also, Mrs. O's children are taken to school by granny and the President is in meeting All day long.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009 at 1:27 PM | Unregistered CommenterShaun


To answer your question directly, No. All people in public life balance have to balance family with career or public duty, and how they do that doesn't concern anyone else except their own families. I don't "need" the First Lady to do anything. She's not on the public payroll; she's never solicited my vote. What she chooses to involve herself in and how she relates to her family are none of my business. I am a great admirer of the First Lady, but that doesn't entitle me to "need" anything from her. The only people to whom she is accountable are her husband, her children, and her mother (because she is taking on a lot of the family responsibility right now). If they are all happy, I'm happy.

In my opinion, it's one thing to say I think she should have worn a long dress instead of a short one, I think that outfit emphasizes her hips too much, I don't care for the position or even the presence of that belt, or I think the lipstick is too dark; and it's something else entirely to say I think she needs to spend more time with the family. I think such comments are beyond the pale of this site, since you asked.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009 at 1:35 PM | Unregistered CommenterMs. G

I was at a coctail party and some of us starting having a lively conversation about Mrs. O.

It is amazing how many people actually really pay attention to what she wears, even subconsciously.

The Question that seemed to get a response from everyone was.....If MO had to take another White House Potrait and could not wear the black sleevless that she originally posed in....what dress that you've seen her wear before would you suggest for the new portrait?

Even those who don't follow this site had something to say. The discussion lead us to so many different conversations. Just thought I'd share !

I'd be curious to hear from anyone who wants to share but really want to know what Mrs T, Posh Tater, Bevi, cafe fashionista and the other daily bloggers think.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009 at 1:55 PM | Unregistered Commenterriver rush

I cannot imagine how I managed to annoy people with whom I actually agree! I never meant - nor, actually, did I say - that any of the events, commencements, museum wing and ballet openings were anything less than supremely worthy of her attention and our support. (Someone who calls herself OperaFanatic is not likely to complain about long overdue support for the arts and art education!) I am THRILLED to have a First Lady whose appeal is so broad. When college graduates are as over the moon about her and her endeavors as 3000 relatively high rollers at the Met, it's a good thing.

I know she only does a few events a week, but a number of them in the last couple of weeks have been huge - Time 100, highly anticipated UC Merced commencement address, Met Museum wing dedication, ABT Gala - so the coverage has been equally huge. And, like all of you, I can't stop checking this site and others, reading everything I can get my hands on. So it feels like they're even bigger because I revisit them so incessantly. I love seeing her out in public, because I know she's doing such good work. All I really meant was that I liked the juxtaposition of her in a pony tail and crop pants one day, a gown the next, and a great day outfit the day after. The last couple of weeks have been great, but a little overwhelming in a way.

Sorry sorry sorry!

Believe me when I say I do not think school visits or family forums are not glitzy. the attention I pay to it makes it seem biI think I've been overwhelmed in the last couple of weeks because there is

Wednesday, May 20, 2009 at 1:55 PM | Unregistered CommenterOperaFanatic

Oh rats! Ignore that last paragraph, which should have been deleted. It's just a bunch of incomplete phrases which didn't make the final version of what I wrote.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009 at 1:58 PM | Unregistered CommenterOperaFanatic

Ms. G - Very well said. We all seem to support our dear First Lady to make her own sartorial choices, whether we all like them or not. I'm sure we can all trust this brilliant, strong woman to chose how many and what events she appears at during any given week.

OperaFanatic - I think that if you need a week off from focusing on what you call the "glitz" of the First Lady, so it doesn't take over the quieter side of her in your mind, that is entirely in your control to manage. It has nothing to do with Mrs. O's doings.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009 at 2:05 PM | Unregistered CommenterWillow

I don't know if anyone mentioned this yet in the threads but, you have to also understand that this woman has TONS of help and support at her disposal that the normal, everyday woman does not as she has mentioned in one of her speeches. Because of her station she doesn't have to worry about most of the everyday things that we usually worry about. She can focus mainly on her kids, her husband and her job as first lady. If she saw any signs that her schedule was interrupting her children's progress, I don't think she would even think twice about slowing down and focusing even more on them. This woman has made it clear who is number one in her life right now and it's not really our business to speculate on her parenting skills or just how much time she is spending with her kids.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009 at 2:22 PM | Unregistered CommenterAri

OperaFanatic - I think Michelle's role will always be larger than life, and it is not reasonable to expect that she can maintain a low profile. She is the first.

I'm sure they have a strategy to make scheduled public appearances to help quell the natural curiosity of the public, minimize intrusive disruptions for the children, and advance the goals of the administration.

This is the new normal.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009 at 2:32 PM | Unregistered CommenterMocha Dem

I clearly don't have what it takes to blog on this site, so I'm going back to lurking. It's too frustrating to have things read into what I have expressed. It is beyond me how anyone thought I was saying MO needs to spend more time with her kids and family. I think she is a stellar First Lady, mother, daughter and wife.

I'm out of here.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009 at 2:41 PM | Unregistered CommenterOperaFanatic

WILLOW-and everyone else. The POETRY JAM is on the white house youtube channel. YAY!

Wednesday, May 20, 2009 at 3:07 PM | Unregistered CommenterJoane

Joane - Thank you so much. I'm going to watch it as soon as I get a chance. Can't wait! (smile)

Wednesday, May 20, 2009 at 3:09 PM | Unregistered CommenterJoane

Joane, - Sooooo sorry. I was thinking of addressing you, and so typed your name into the wrong place where mine should have gone. My apologies to everyone.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009 at 3:10 PM | Unregistered CommenterWillow

I guess the moderator caught my mistake and didn't let my comment through. It said:

JOANE - Thank you so much for the info on the Poetry Jam video. I'm going to watch it as soon as I get a chance. Can't wait. (smile)

Wednesday, May 20, 2009 at 3:13 PM | Unregistered CommenterWillow

No problem, I was a little confused at first but it all worked out:) OMG, I'm so excited for you and everyone else that hasn't seen it yet, enjoy!!!

Wednesday, May 20, 2009 at 3:14 PM | Unregistered CommenterJoane

@ OperaFanatic - at first reading, your post was strange and it hit me the wrong way. I responded in what I felt was a similar manner.

It seems you didn't intend to insinuate that Mrs. O should be spending less time in public, but instead, you miss seeing the dressed down, every day Mrs. O - I guess the low, in Mrs. O's high/low style, isn't being nurtured enough, to you.

That's fine, and I suppose I can see what you mean, but I think you should re-read your comment again, then you will see why so many took your comment the wrong way.

I think you should continue to contribute to this site, but I do think you may need a little break from following Mrs. O if you're feeling overwhelmed by her glamour of late. She has been very active, and I don't sense her stopping any time soon.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009 at 3:15 PM | Unregistered CommenterIVA

Thanks Joane for the Poetry Jam heads up! Like Willow, I've been anxious to watch it. I saw it the first time but had audio problems off and on.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009 at 3:19 PM | Unregistered CommenterJanelle

No OperaFanatic please feel free to share your opinions.Sometimes it is hard to understand what people mean when you are on the internet and only have their words to judge by.You just have to be try to be very clear as to what your talking about.You can't start a sentence with "This may sound strange, but I’m ready for MO to spend some time at home with the family," and expect people not to get riled up.Also remember just because someone disagrees with you doesn't mean they are attacking you,its like I was saying earlier its hard to know someones intent on the internet.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009 at 3:22 PM | Unregistered CommenterCarmen

Hey, OperaFanatic, get back here. It doesn't matter. Even if people don't agree with you, it's OK.

All I'll say is this: I was watching an online interview on some news programme the other week (the link is on here SOMEwhere!) and one woman said that she had rung Mrs O's office to find out how many engagements she had done since the Inauguration and her office said that she did no more than THREE OFFICIAL engagements per WEEK. I think everyone goggled! It does feel like more than that given all the coverage of her every move. Although I don't wish that Mrs O would take time out, I do see where you might be coming from. Frankly, I'm still delighted with everything I see, so I'd be sad not to get my fix (I choose my words very carefully, your First Lady is my addiction)!

@Joane you are a star I shall be watching that right away.

river rush you are too sweet! ;-) I'm going to have to think about that.....

Wednesday, May 20, 2009 at 4:00 PM | Unregistered CommenterPosh Tater

Thank You Carmen...I was sort of scratching my head but you articulated my thoughts precisely.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009 at 4:02 PM | Unregistered CommenterDonna No Shock

I love this site! It's so positive, most of the time, and we have such mature contributors! That's so wonderful! Keep it up, guys! Especially you regulars! Makes me cry happy tears... okay, not really, but happy indeed!

Wednesday, May 20, 2009 at 4:12 PM | Unregistered CommenterBianca

Thanks everyone, esp.Willow, Janelle, Posh Tater.. at the moment it seems the WH staff is putting it up in installments. So far 2 parts of 9 are up. They should have the entire event up by tonight.. hopefully. Also if you haven't subscribed to the WH youtube site consider doing so, they have all the president's videos (I hope they will start putting Michelles) and also behind the scenes stuff.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009 at 4:13 PM | Unregistered CommenterJoane

Well I've watched the two and I'm mesmerised. Mayda del Valle is extraORDinary....

Wednesday, May 20, 2009 at 4:49 PM | Unregistered CommenterPosh Tater


Exactly why I "lurk" (and enjoy the site), but never make comments.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009 at 4:51 PM | Unregistered CommenterGerri W.

They just put up the 3rd, 6 more to go. lol

Wednesday, May 20, 2009 at 5:05 PM | Unregistered CommenterJoane

OperaFanatic: I get overwhelmed, too. I cannot keep up with all the coverage of Mrs. O and what she has worn where. I must simply decide for myself which sites I'm going to read, and how much. I'm also way overwhelmed by all the political blogs I used to read every single day. I'm needing to scale back to headlines only for lots of them.

It appears that this administration is going to be very fast-paced. President and Mrs. O are young and strong, and ambitious to bring change in so many areas. We may all be feeling soon that we're just barely holding on for the ride. It is not their responsibility to move at a pace we can all keep up with. It is our responsibility to regulate our involvement in watching them.

I think we've all found ourselves acting like addicts here, losing sleep watching for the latest thing, stealing time from other things to be involved here. It's a real temptation to over-do. Each of us needs to set our own limits.

Once in a while someone writes something like, "I've got to go to bed." or such. Maybe more comments of that nature could help remind all of us that we have lives to care for away from this blog and others.

OperaFanatic, this is offered in the kindest and friendliest way possible. I would miss your contributions to our discussions. I hope you will continue to hang out here, within your limits, and continue to contribute.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009 at 5:10 PM | Unregistered CommenterWillow

Also to OperaFanatic I apologize if I took your comments the wrong way. Please don't feel that this was a personal attack on you. I love your contributions to the site.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009 at 5:15 PM | Unregistered CommenterAri

My husband wanted to watch the Poetry Jam with me, so I'm waiting until he gets home. However, we were out last night, so he may be too tired for this tonight. We may not get to it together until tomorrow night. But I'm so glad to know it's available for when we can enjoy it together.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009 at 5:15 PM | Unregistered CommenterWillow

OperaFanatic, I think we all know you were coming from a good place, and the constant focus on targeted blogs such as this can get rather exhausting, but it really helps to remember that Mrs O is a very sensible and organized woman who's very big on prioritising...

I think it's important to remember that the first lady actually never spends the night away for these events - she's nearly always home to tuck the kids in bed...

For instance, she left immediately after her commencement speech at Merced to return to D.C & she didn't hang around for dinner at the ABT event, because they flew back to D.C that night too...

Wednesday, May 20, 2009 at 5:24 PM | Unregistered CommenterAudrey

Today, 7:30pm - The Obamas host a reception for bipartisan members of the House and their guests.
Saturday- The Obamas head to Camp David
Monday - The Obama return to the White House

Regarding the discussion of Michelle Obama spending time at events: If Michelle were still in Chicago working at her career she would be spending 40+ hours a week at work. At the moment she is at home more now than when she was a working mom.

OperaFanatic, I also would like to see some more photos of Michelle doing everyday things - like walking Bo and piddling around in her veggie garden.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009 at 6:54 PM | Unregistered CommenterLeah D

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