As the hostess of the annual affair, Michelle Obama stunned in a sterling silver sequin abstract floral, one-of-a-kind nude gown by Naeem Khan -- the designer created the dress especially for the India-themed event. (The honored guests of the evening were Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and his wife Gursharan Kaur.)
While Mrs. O accessorized elegantly with a color-coordinated wrap, stack of silver and gold churis (traditional Indian bangles) and dramatic shoulder-dusting earrings with fleur-de-lis detail and gold and purple stones, it was the strapless silhouette paired with her swept-back hair that really caught our eye.
MO's state dinner ensemble has fashion insiders applauding her social know-how.
"The nice thing about it is the Jackie Kennedy sort of appropriateness. Most people wouldn't know one way or another about Naeem's background, but if one sentence gets mentioned to the prime minister, then her subtleness would pay off," Hal Rubenstein, fashion director at InStyle magazine, told Associated Press.
As for President Obama, who has had a snafu or two with fashion (er, mom jeans anyone?), Rubenstein approves. "I often feel Obama's suits are too big on him, but I think he got a new tux."
Michelle Obama's highly scrutinized sartorial choices have clearly influenced the fashion industry, too. One of her favorite designers recently took home the CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund prize.