- The Washington Times - Thursday, June 11, 2009

One of the world’s most fashionable first ladies has declared her closet fur-free, but the question we wanted answered was has her sister in style, Michelle Obama, followed suit?

“I do not wear, buy or own fur,” wrote France’s first lady, Carla Bruni-Sarkozy, in a letter obtained by G2, to Dan Mathews, senior vice president for People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals U.S. “Every designer who kindly lends me clothes for public appearances can tell you that I do not accept to wear fur pieces, even when they’re only a small part of the outfit.”

In a letter to Mrs. Bruni-Sarkozy that was leaked to the Associated Press, PETA U.S. had expressed concerns about photographs that showed Mrs. Bruni-Sarkozy wearing what appeared to be fur.

“I hope this letter answers the questions you may have had,” the vexed former supermodel wrote. “Do not hesitate to write to me directly in the future or if you prefer to go through wire service, please take the time to check facts before publication.”

Meow!

Meanwhile, don’t expect any fur to fly over Mrs. Obama’s fashions.

“We’ve never written to Michelle Obama about this issue because we have always known her to be fur-free,” says Amanda Schinke, media campaigns coordinator for PETA.

“Mrs. Obama does not wear fur,” Mrs. O’s deputy press secretary Semonti Mustaphi confirmed.

There may not be any fur in her closet, but while in Europe last week, the usually subdued Mrs. O stepped out of character by wearing a colorful yellow and orange tunic top while sightseeing in London. The orange embellishment ran streak-like across her middle, prompting Wednesday’s Drudge report to scream, “London Fashion Shock! Michelle and the Orange Snake.”

All that jazz

Veteran jazzman and Louisiana native Ellis Marsalis was spotted lunching at Acadiana Tuesday with Charlie Fishman, producer of the Duke Ellington Jazz Festival, which came out swinging Friday and runs through Monday.

The ultra-New-Orleans-style restaurant was an appropriate choice, as this year’s festival is dedicated to the Big Easy, and Acadiana is a major sponsor. More boldface jazz legends from the Crescent City, including Harry Connick Jr., Irma Thomas and Terence Blanchard are due in town for the festival.

Let the good music - and eats - roll!

Anchors aweigh

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