The Strategic Fashioning of Casey DeSantis

She has the bouncy, shimmering locks of the ballet from “Beauty and the Beast” (the 1991 animated version) and Catherine, Princess of Wales, combined with the full-skirted pastel wardrobe of a well-mannered debutante, some wool And a cap or two. Tom Brooker, costume designer for “Saturday Night Live” and “House of Cards,” said she was “dressing to be either a princess or the first lady of the world,” who studied and imitated earlier styles. Art is made. Women “There is so much intention and purpose behind everything.”

To acknowledge this is not to diminish his substance—the work he’s done for mental health, cancer research, hurricane relief—but to give him credit for understanding the fundamental truth of modern campaigning. “Presidential campaigns are MRIs for the soul,” said David M. Axelrod, founder of the Institute of Politics at the University of Chicago and a former senior adviser to Barack Obama. “People aren’t just judging your positions, they’re judging you as a person.” To that end, he said, “Spouses play a really important role in filling out that picture.”

Image, in this case, being the operative word.

Although Ms. DeSantis has always been a considered dresser, a lesson from her days as a local anchor with WJXT in Jacksonville, Fla., when she and Mr. DeSantis met, she had previously Over the course of a year, he developed his style. On election night in 2022, instead of taking the stage at the Tampa Convention Center, she wore a floor-length gold and yellow ruffled one-shoulder gown that made her look like she was headed to a state dinner.

However, it was her outfit on opening day in January that really put the couple’s ambitions in the public eye: a mint green dress by Australian label Alex Perry, with a built-in cape flowing from the shoulders, white was wearing gloves. Its color and lines seemed to come straight out of the Kennedy era. The only bright pink dress Ms. DeSantis wore to her husband’s State of the State address, with a plunging neckline and more white gloves, was another apparent nod to Jacqueline Kennedy, one of the world’s most famous women. She was one of the most recognizable, respected and stylish first ladies. American history. Just like the snow-blue dress she wore to Japan with Mr. DeSantis, another hat style, this time with flower petals on the shoulders.

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