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via: yahoo.com

Looking glamorous in an elegant strapless gown by Indian-American designer Naeem Khan, Michelle Obama welcomed Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and his wife Mrs. Gursharan Kaur to the White House Tuesday night and ushered in the Obama administration’s first official state dinner.

Though she’s become known for her (sometimes controversial) high-fashion risk-taking, tonight Mrs.Obama chose a dress with a classic floor-length cut in a subdued gold fabric and paired it with a light shawl. Her makeup was kept to a minimum and her hair done in a dignified updo. The entire ensemble seemed traditionally feminine and sophisticated, reminiscent of the first lady’s more conservative predecessors.

But there were a few Michelle-style flourishes, including a pair of elaborate chandelier earrings and a stack of glittering gold-and-diamond bangles piled high on her left arm. Her choice of Khan as designer is also characteristic of this first lady, who often favors little-known artisans over big names. Khan has been on the fashion scene since 2003, and has outfitted youthful celebrities such as Beyoncé, Carrie Underwood, and Jennifer Lopez. He has also dressed dignitaries like Queen Noor and designed the costumes for the 2006 movie “Dreamgirls.”

Designer Naeem Khan. Photo: GettyDesigner Naeem Khan. Photo: Getty

Tonight’s look may mark a sartorial departure for Mrs. Obama, a shift into more sophisticated, luxurious, and regal attire, rather than the playful, accessible, less-polished clothing she’s worn thus far.

It will also mean a big shift in popularity and business for Naeem Khan, who–like the first lady’s favorite designer before him, Jason Wu–is more than likely about to become one of the most-searched and sought-after names in the business.