Spotlight on Michelle Obama

February 20, 2020

Over the years there has been few women of color who have caught the attention of the American public quite like our former First Lady of the United States Michelle Obama. Unlike previous First Ladies who were mostly seen on the arm of the President during state affairs, Mrs. Obama used her unique position to improve the health of American schools and families. She has become a benchmark for working wives and mothers to look up to; and has even become a style icon. To celebrate Black History Month we have picked our favorite Michelle Obama books. A women of both style and substance, we hope you enjoy them.

What Would Michelle Do?: A Modern-Day Guide to Living with Substance and Style
By Allison Samuels
Penguin
Apr 2, 2013
Design
288 pages

This is an inspiring life and style guide for every woman who admires the popular and poised First Lady Michelle Obama

Embodying style, class, and intelligence, Michelle Obama has quickly become an American icon. Yet, she still faces the same issues as most women today. As they watch her juggle kids, marriage, and a seemingly nonstop calendar without breaking a sweat, American women are asking, “What would Michelle do?”

Award-winning Newsweek journalist Allison Samuels, who has interviewed the First Lady numerous times, follows the journey of Michelle’s life to illustrate the determination, intellect, and charm that drive her success– and reveals how women can incorporate those same attributes to get everything Michelle has, from her toned arms, to her grace under pressure, to her happy marriage. Covering a range of lifestyle topics-from creating a distinctive style to conquering obstacles to managing a household–What Would Michelle Do? combines solid advice with a fun package that will appeal to style mavens, soccer moms, and career women alike.

American Grown: The Story of the White House Kitchen Garden and Gardens Across America
By Michelle Obama Potter/Ten Speed/Harmony/ Rodale, May 29, 2012 – Gardening – 272 pages
12 Reviews

In April 2009, First Lady Michelle Obama planted a kitchen garden on the White House’s South Lawn. As fresh vegetables, fruit, and herbs sprouted from the ground, this White House Kitchen Garden inspired a new conversation all across the country about the food we feed our families and the impact it has on the health and well-being of our children.

Now, in her first-ever book, American Grown, Mrs. Obama invites you inside the White House Kitchen Garden and shares its inspiring story, from the first planting to the latest harvest. Hear about her worries as a novice gardener – would the new plants even grow? Learn about her struggles and her joys as lettuce, corn, tomatoes, collards and kale, sweet potatoes and rhubarb flourished in the freshly tilled soil. Get an unprecedented behind-the-scenes look at every season of the garden’s growth, with striking original photographs that bring its story to life. Try the unique recipes created by White House chefs and made with ingredients just picked from the White House Garden. And learn from the White House Garden team about how you can help plant your own backyard, school or community garden.

Mrs. Obama’s journey continues across the nation as she shares the stories of other gardens that have moved and inspired her: Houston office workers who make the sidewalk bloom; a New York City school that created a scented garden for the visually impaired; a North Carolina garden that devotes its entire harvest to those in need; and other stories of communities that are transforming the lives and health of their citizens.

In American Grown, Mrs. Obama tells the story of the White House Kitchen Garden, celebrates the bounty of gardens across our nation, and reminds us all of what we can grow together.

Commander in Chic: Every Woman’s Guide to Managing Her Style Like a First Lady
By Mikki Taylor
Simon and Schuster, Nov 29, 2011 – Design – 192 pages

With her “classic with a twist” sensibility, Michelle Obama oozes chic! Mikki Taylor, one of the nation’s foremost authorities on fashion, beauty, and style, has taken Mrs. Obama as her muse, to write the book women who admire them both have been waiting for, Commander in Chic.

The nation’s major networks, radio stations, and newspapers call on Mikki Taylor not only to discuss the “Obama look” and its feverish impact on style, but to hear Taylor’s own smart advice on looking polished and pulled together. She’s been privy to Obama’s style philosophy as well as that of countless celebs through her longtime role as beauty and cover director at Essence magazine, where she collaborated with Obama’s team on fashion and beauty choices for prime photo shoots for the magazine.

Now Taylor is sharing the keys to the Obama look with her diary-like observations, tips, and “Mikki-isms” (her short, ultra-clever style aphorisms) for women everywhere. Mikki knows we all want to possess a signature look and a wardrobe of bankable pieces that allow us the kind of versatility where we never have to worry about what to wear again! Consider Commander in Chic as your personal style diary—one where you’ll find everything you need to know to possess great style—simply, effortlessly, and for keeps.

Cover-to-cover, the book is full of stunning photographs that take the guesswork out of what works. Every chapter in the book shares the kinds of concrete information and inspiring style ideas that not only make getting dressed a fabulous experience, but define what will make you a woman to remember! Here is everything you need to know about style—from your glossary of high-performance hair products and “do howto’s” to the best makeup finds and techniques to what you need to know to grow your nails long and strong to the most polished hues for all skin tones. In “The Gam Slam,” Taylor tells you how to work summer-pretty legs year-round—from how to keep them even-toned and satiny smooth to vein-free.

All in all, Commander in Chic is a gold mine of information that will inspire you— from head to toe, inside and out—on how to truly style, now and for years to come.

Becoming Michelle Obama
Crown Publishing Group
Nov 13, 2018
Biography & Autobiography
400 pages

This is an intimate, powerful, and inspiring memoir by the former First Lady of the United States In a life filled with meaning and accomplishment, Michelle Obama has emerged as one of the most iconic and compelling women of our era. As First Lady of the United States of America– the first African American to serve in that role–she helped create the most welcoming and inclusive White House in history, while also establishing herself as a powerful advocate for women and girls in the U.S. and around the world, dramatically changing the ways that families pursue healthier and more active lives, and standing with her husband as he led America through some of its most harrowing moments. Along the way, she showed us a few dance moves, crushed Carpool Karaoke, and raised two down-to-earth daughters under an unforgiving media glare.

In her memoir, a work of deep reflection and mesmerizing storytelling, Michelle Obama invites readers into her world, chronicling the experiences that have shaped her–from her childhood on the South Side of Chicago to her years as an executive balancing the demands of motherhood and work, to her time spent at the world’s most famous address. With unerring honesty and lively wit, she describes her triumphs and her disappointments, both public and private, telling her full story as she has lived it–in her own words and on her own terms. Warm, wise, and revelatory, Becoming is the deeply personal reckoning of a woman of soul and substance who has steadily defied expectations– and whose story inspires us to do the same.