One of the big election debates in the fashion industry seems to be whether or not designers who disagree with Donald Trump’s politics will refuse to dress Melania Trump.
French designer Sophie Theallet took perhaps the most definite and public stance when she wrote an open letter specifically refusing to dress the further First Lady because of the President-elect’s politics.
During an appearance on Wednesday morning on ABC’s The View, the celebrated fashion designer Tom Ford said that he will be joining Theallet as one of the designers who will not be outfitting Mrs. Trump. However, he has a very different reason from Theallet, who cited Trump’s “racism, sexism, and xenophobia.”
When Joy Behar suggested that the incoming First Lady would look great in his clothes, Ford pushed back, saying “I don’t know. I was asked to dress her quite a few years ago, I declined; She’s not necessarily my image,” Ford said.
At the same time, the designer — who admitted being a Democrat who voted for Hillary Clinton and is “sad and disappointed” with the election results — noted that his decision was not necessarily Melania so much as her position as the First Lady that factored into his decision.
“Even had Hillary won, she shouldn’t be wearing my clothes,” he said, adding:
“They’re too expensive. And I don’t mean that in a bad way — they’re not artificially expensive, it’s the cost to make these things.”
He explained that he thinks that the first lady should wear clothes that are more relatable to the American public. However, the designer stopped short of saying that Melania should wear less expensive clothes. “I’m going to leave that to Melania.”
Ford did dress Michelle Obama, but he is quick to point out that he only dressed her once, and for an event that seemed appropriate for an American designer living in London: a meeting with the queen. “She was going to Buckingham Palace for dinner with the queen and I thought that was appropriate. I live in London so that makes sense. And it was an honor to dress her.”