Brazil’s first lady makes bold fashion statements

Brazil’s new first lady Rosangela Janja da Silva with her husband Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva. Twitter/em_com

Sao Paulo: of Brazil The new First Lady, Rosangela “Jinja” da Silva, is drawing attention with her bold fashion choices.

From wearing red Workers’ Party stars on her wedding dress to breaking taboos by wearing trousers to her husband’s inauguration, and embracing eco-friendly clothing, Janja is using her wardrobe to make a statement. Her fashion choices reflect her passion for causes such as women’s rights, indigenous people and the environment. Jinja’s style has evolved since her husband, a veteran left winger. Luiz Inacio Lola da Silvatook over on January 1, and her fashion statements are still making headlines.

Rosangela “Janja” da Silva, a 56-year-old sociologist, has changed her style significantly since her husband, veteran leftist leader Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva, took office on January 1.

The long-time Workers’ Party activist, who last year married twice-widow Lola, 77, has flashed his former low-key look.

She’s replaced her go-to jeans and sneakers with a wardrobe carefully curated for her favorite causes, including women’s rights, indigenous people and the environment — not to mention Brazilian designers.

“She made Brazilian fashion one of the elements she used to build her public persona as a feminist and progressive,” says Benjamin Rosenthal, a personal marketing expert at Brazil’s Getulio Vargas Foundation. she does.”

De Silva has kept the nation hanging on his fashion choices since at least his wedding day last May, when he and Lola donned a dress to make their five-year relationship official in a glamorous private ceremony in Sao Paulo. Stopped a tough presidential campaign.

She walked down the aisle in a flowing white dress with a low-cut shoulder with a tiny red jewel in an embroidered star — a nod to the Workers’ Party symbol that brought them together.

She also wore a subtle red star to Lola’s inauguration in January — this time, on the soles of her high heels.

First lady in pants

The first lady — who dislikes the title, calling it “paternal” — made an even bolder statement on Inauguration Day by wearing pants, the first time the wife of a Brazilian president has not worn a dress to the ceremony.

Da Silva She chose a shimmering beaded pantsuit by Brazilian designers Hilo Rocha and Camila Pedrosa, the same team that made her wedding dress.

“Pants are a symbol of women’s freedom,” says Rocha.

“In Brazil, until about 20 years ago, women couldn’t even wear them to Congress,” where Lula took the oath of office.

Silk pantsuits were dyed with rhubarb and the classically Brazilian plant, the cashew fruit, and beautifully embroidered with traditional local designs.

Da Silva has also attracted attention with blouses emblazoned with the image of early 20th-century feminist icon Maria Bonita. embroidered blazer by Women’s Cooperative; an eco-friendly skirt made from fabric scraps; and outfits made from recycled clothing by Brazilian brand Reptilia.

“She imbues the role of first lady with the practicality of a woman who isn’t afraid to get her hands dirty,” says Heloisa Strobel, the 36-year-old founder of Reptilia.

“You would never expect to see her in a tight dress that she can barely walk in.”

This is a fairly accurate description of a typical dress worn by da Silva’s predecessor, Michelle Bolsonaro, the devout evangelical Christian wife of far-right former President Jair Bolsonaro (2019–2022).

Another contrast: Da Silva has also brought bright colors to the presidential palace, replacing the pastel tones favored by his predecessor.

For example, interest in Reptilia spiked in January when “Jinja” wore one of their pieces — a skirt with overlapping bright red stripes — during her and Lola’s first official foreign trip to Argentina.

“I want to take Brazilian designers everywhere I go,” da Silva told Vogue magazine in an interview this month.

Not just flip flops

Entrepreneurs in Brazil’s $29.7 billion textile and fashion industry are thrilled to receive support.

Strobl says da Silva wants to “showcase the best design that can be made in Brazil, beyond the stereotypical palm tree print”.

Aaron Martin, creative director of Misci, another of Da Silva’s favorite local brands, agrees.

“The world knows Brazil as the land of flip-flops and carnivals. But we also have a powerful luxury goods industry, with incredible silks and cottons,” says the 31-year-old, who has his own designs outside. There are big plans to take the country.

“Fashion crystallizes a sociopolitical moment,” he adds.

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