Will Melania Trump get a 'Vogue' cover as first lady? Here's what we know so far.


A first lady's place has long been, at one point or another, in the pages of Vogue

It all started with a neat, black-and-white portrait of Lou Henry Hoover, the wife of Herbert, published in a 1929 issue of Vogue. Then a portrait of Eleanor Roosevelt graced Vogue's pages. Then it was Mamie Eisenhower. Then came Jackie Kennedy and Lady Bird Johnson after her, and Pat Nixon and then Betty Ford and Rosalynn Carter and Nancy Reagan and Barbara Bush

In December 1998, Hillary Clinton made history as the first first lady to appear on the cover, but then Laura Bush got pushed into its pages. Then Michelle Obama made history again, with a landmark three Vogue covers during the course of her time as first lady. 

So now the question that begs an answer is: What's Vogue to make of Melania Trump? 

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The 2016 presidential election was like none other. It was an election so divisive that even Vogue felt compelled to endorse a presidential candidate — Hillary Clinton — for the first time in its more than 100-year history. 

But it's Trump who won the election and presumably, Melania Trump could be getting her own cover. 

As of writing, Vogue hasn't refused to deny her a cover just yet. "While we never comment on future editorial, Vogue has a long, rich history, dating back to Mrs. Helen Taft, of covering America's first ladies, regardless of party affiliation," a rep for the magazine told Business of Fashion

Though there are some things that are pointing to Trump's favor. 

One of the advantages Trump has going for her that other first ladies didn't, is that she has been on Vogue's cover before, in February 2005, when she stood in her $100,000 wedding dress under the headline, "Donald Trump's new bride." 


There's also the fact that weeks after the election, Vogue editor-in-chief Anna Wintour met the president-elect in Trump Tower. She was not photographed, but she was there. And now, many are thinking the only thing he could have been speaking to her about is someone (or everyone) from the Trump family getting their own Vogue cover or feature sometime soon. Why else would the pair be meeting?

Additionally, there is the fact that she, unlike any first lady's past, is a former model, has expressed a friendship with former Vogue editor-at-large Andre Leon Talley and almost exclusively wears high-end designer duds during public appearances. If she were married to a more liberal president-elect, she'd be a shoe-in. 

Yet she's married to a man who has divided this country, what with the dozens of women who have accused him of sexual assault, and his dog-whistling to neo-Nazis. Because of this, many designers have already sworn to never dress her. 

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So that complicates things. To have her on a cover, and not just in the inside pages, might for some readers feel like an endorsement of a man and administration that many in the fashion world are currently at odds with, from designers like Tom Ford to publications like Vogue's sister publication, Teen Vogue

Before Trump's even been sworn in, companies have faced blowback for showing support. In November, New Balance sneakers gave a slightly pro-Trump statement and was then embraced by white supremacists while others called for a boycott. Singer Andrea Bocelli faced such criticism for even considering a performance at the inauguration that he recently backed out

What also complicates things is how, more and more, it seems as though Melania Trump won't even be filling the prototypical role of a first lady. She'll be staying with her son, Barron, in Trump Tower in New York City in the beginning of her husband's presidency, not the White House, for instance.

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Who seems to actually be taking on more of the role of the first lady is Donald Trump's eldest daughter, Ivanka Trump. Though that wouldn't be unprecedented, as the Washington Post reported, it would be a dramatic change from what we currently have in Michelle Obama. 

So really, is the question we should be asking: Is Ivanka Trump going to get a Vogue cover? 

Of course, this is something we'll never know until we see it, but after a year like 2016, we feel it's best to expect — and prepare for — the unexpected.