A few months into the new administration, the list of designers refusing to dress Melania Trump is seemingly longer than that of brands taking credit for the garments she's worn as First Lady. In a new interview with Time, Christian Siriano added himself to the former group, explaining why we might not see any of his signature gowns worn by the First Family anytime soon.
Despite having dressed Michelle Obama a handful of times during her husband's second term, Siriano explained that it's a totally different situation with the Trumps. "I think for a while, everyone was trying to figure out what to do [with FLOTUS]," he told Time, noting that he himself would probably not be dressing her. "Unfortunately, it really doesn't have anything to do with her, but she is representing what's happening politically and what's happening politically right now is not really good for anyone."
Since Donald Trump won the election, Sophie Theallet, Zac Posen, Marc Jacobs, and Tom Ford have all distanced themselves from the new administration, the latter even catching the attention (and disdain) of the President himself. Meanwhile, some designers have openly celebrated when FLOTUS has chosen to wear their work — most notably, Stefano Gabbana of Dolce & Gabbana. Still, the industry appears to be torn about how to engage with the White House, especially since, by and large, it came out in support of Hillary Clinton during the campaign. The relationship fashion enjoyed with Mrs. Trump's predecessor will seemingly be difficult to replicate.
Plus, Siriano defended a designer's right to speak out about dressing a public figure: "It's important because as designers, that's the only voice we have," he explained to Time. However, Siriano clarified that this applies to every field — not just politics. "If I got a call from somebody tomorrow that was, say, a musician, who was all over Twitter or Instagram hate-bashing people, I wouldn't dress her either," he said.
Siriano, a designer who's beloved as much for his inclusive approach to fashion as he is for his fanciful designs, has gained a reputation for embracing women of all shapes, sizes, and backgrounds. In addition to presenting his fall '17 collection on a lineup of diverse models, he sent a clear message about where he stood in the current political climate with a single slogan T-shirt that read "People Are People," created by his husband, Brad Walsh.
As far as his approach to picking who he dresses, Siriano broke it down for Time: "I dress people that I can support and support what they’re doing in their lives. That’s why it’s important to me and it should be important to every designer because the people that you put in your brand represent the brand."