Page last updated at 16:41 GMT, Wednesday, 11 February 2009

Michelle Obama makes Vogue cover

Michelle Obama on the Tonight Show
Michelle Obama's fashion sense is being closely followed

President Barack Obama's wife Michelle is the cover girl for the March edition of fashion magazine Vogue.

It is only the second time an American First Lady has taken the place of a model on a Vogue cover - the other was Hillary Clinton in 1998.

Mrs Obama, who was photographed wearing outfits she chose herself, says she is aware her wardrobe is under scrutiny.

"I'm not going to pretend that I don't care about it. But I also have to be practical," she told Vogue magazine.

Annie Leibovitz photographed Mrs Obama wearing a magenta silk dress designed by Jason Wu for the cover portrait.

It is the second time she has chosen to wear one of his creations for a high-profile public appearance. She wore a long white gown by Wu for the inauguration balls on 20 January.

Mrs Obama's sense of style has proved influential.

On the day she dressed her family in clothes from J Crew for her husband's inauguration, the company's shares leapt 10%.

In the accompanying interview for Vogue, Mrs Obama also talks about her role as a social hostess.

"We want entertaining in the White House to feel like America, that we are reminded of all the many facets of our culture. The Latino community, the Asian-American community, the African-American community... hip-hop, spoken word - we want to bring the youth in, for them to hear their voices in this," she said.

On her self-declared role as "mom-in-chief" she will try to take her daughters Malia and Sasha to school every morning, though she acknowledges this may not always be possible.

"I like to be a presence in my kids' school. I want to know the teachers; I want to know the parents."

Apart from Bess Truman, Vogue has photographed the wife of every American president since 1929 when President Herbert Hoover's wife, Lou Henry Hoover, was featured.

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