WASHINGTON (AP) — Michelle Obama opted for a strapless, unadorned ivory gown by American designer Brandon Maxwell, longtime stylist to singer Lady Gaga and a red carpet favorite, for Tuesday's state dinner for the prime minister of Singapore.
The black-tie dinner in honor of Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong and his wife, Ho Ching, was the 12th state dinner for the Obamas. It also marked the 50th anniversary of bilateral relations between the U.S. and Singapore, an island nation of about 5.7 million people.
Maxwell, originally from Longview, Texas, earned his name as Lady Gaga's stylist, but has become a red carpet favorite, dressing stars like Gwyneth Paltrow, Kristen Wiig and Uma Thurman, among others. He launched his ready-to-wear label in 2015.
Maxwell has had a big year. In June, the designer won an award for emerging womenswear designers from the Council of Fashion Designers of America. He dressed Lady Gaga for both the Oscars and the Grammys. He was also short-listed for the LVMH prize for young fashion designers.
The first lady has championed a number of American designers during her nearly eight years in the White House, as well as designers from the countries of visiting heads of state.
Earlier in the day, she wore a lacy, sleeveless yellow dress by Naeem Khan, the Indian-American designer who is one of her favorites, to tour the National Gallery of Art with Ho Ching.
That floral-themed dress seemed to dovetail nicely with the floral arrangements for the dinner: yellow orchids, yellow roses and other yellow flowers. The color was meant to symbolize the friendship between the two countries.
After dinner, R&B and soul singer-songwriter Chrisette Michele was scheduled to entertain guests.