Melania Trump Wears First Lady Cred on Her Sleeve

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Melania Trump on her way to West Virginia in a dress by Cefinn and stilettos by Christian Louboutin.

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Jim Watson/Agence France-Presse — Getty Images

On Tuesday, the day after the slightly surreal public tussle between Ivana and Melania Trump over who actually was first lady (Mrs. Trump #1 joked it was she; the current occupant of the White House was not amused), the official first lady made a visit to an opioid clinic in West Virginia, signaling that the drug epidemic would be a focus for the East Wing.

It was a classic first lady moment, and it’s clearly an important cause (less controversial, perhaps, than the cyberbullying idea), but also classic was Mrs. Trump’s choice of dress for the occasion: a green shirtdress from Cefinn, the brand created by Samantha Cameron.

Yes, that Samantha Cameron: the former first lady of Britain. Or the equivalent; there is no formal first lady title there.

Still, it was, in effect, an appearance that quietly doubled-down on the first lady messaging.

Earlier this year Ms. Cameron introduced Cefinn — the name derives from a combination of her children’s initials — some months after her husband, David, resigned as prime minister after the country voted to leave the European Union. The moderately priced and easy-to-wear collection is sold on Net-a-Porter, among other retailers, and the particular dress that Mrs. Trump wore, a belted muslin number, is available for $450 (Mrs. Trump changed the belt).

That makes it a relatively accessible public-image choice on the Trump continuum, another interesting signal from a first lady whose clothes, such as the $51,500 Dolce & Gabbana coat that she wore in May during the Group of 7 summit meeting in Sicily, have tended toward the gilded and out-of-reach. And, like the Timberland boots she wore this month in Puerto…

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