The Obamas roll out the red carpet for French President Francois Hollande

February 11, 2014
President Obama's 2014 state dinner honored French President François Hollande. From the toasts to the celebrities in attendance, here are highlights from the evening. (JulieAnn McKellogg/The Washington Post)

Scandal? What scandal?

Nary a whiff of Chanel-scented imbroglio was in the air as the Obamas welcomed French president Francois Hollande to the White House on Tuesday.

Sandwiched between a beaming President Obama and First Lady, Hollande was safely 4,000 miles away from his new mistress, jilted former partner and all the drama in between.

“Bonsoir” and “un peu” abounded as guests practiced their high school French on the red carpet while making their way through the East Wing. But not everyone was so reserved.

“I was hoping it wasn’t too slutty,” said Joanna Coles, editor-in-chief of Cosmopolitan magazine, who was dressed in a skin-baring black leather gown. “But it’s the president of France so I thought, ‘Let’s go for it.’”

And although Michelle Obama will probably never get the chance to test her fashion mettle next to a “première dame,” the first lady stunned in a French blue Carolina Herrera ball gown with a black lace overlay and, uncharacteristic for her, three-quarter sleeves. She was solo act that would have been tough to match.

More on the state dinner:
Michelle Obama chooses Carolina Herrera for state dinner dress

Guest list for the state dinner

On state dinner menu, American wines by French natives

Watch: Eight things to know about state dinners

More state dinner coverage from menu to Michelle Obama’s style–and everything in between. 

 

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