In April, Dr Biden found herself, and her outfit, the subject of attention when she stepped off Air Force One in an entirely black outfit, which included a pair of heeled black booties, a leather skirt, a black blazer, and a pair of black fishnet-esque tights.
The punk-inspired look sparked a range of mixed reactions, with many praising the first lady for taking fashion chances while conservatives insisted that the stockings, which more closely resembled patterned tights than actual fishnets, were unbefitting of Dr Biden’s role.
In a new wide-ranging cover interview for Vogue’s August issue, the first lady briefly discussed her wardrobe and her amazement over the close attention paid to what she wears, before insisting that the stockings were not fishnets.
The topic arose after writer Jonathan Van Meter informed Dr Biden of the Instagram account @drjillbidenfashion, which posts each outfit she wears, prompting the first lady to respond: “Oh great. It’s kind of surprising, I think, how much commentary is made about what I wear or if I put my hair in a scrunchie. I put my hair up! Or the stocking thing… ”
In regards to the notable fashion moment, which the outlet dubbed “Fishnetgate,” Dr Biden then added: “It’s amazing how much people pay attention to every little detail. And they weren’t fishnets. They weren’t lace. They were very pretty stockings.”
As for her other fashion choices as first lady, Dr Biden, who doesn’t work with a stylist, did not want to dwell on the subject, but acknowledged that it is important to her that she wears clothes from a lot of “young, emerging, and diverse designers”.
“I think that’s important: You try to lift up other people,” Dr Biden said. “I like to choose from a diverse group of designers. When I was planning my Inauguration outfits, that’s one of the things I considered.”
In addition to using her platform to highlight a range of diverse designers, the first lady has also earned praise for rewearing outfits on a number of occasions.
Most recently, Dr Biden was applauded for her decision to wear a Zadig & Voltaire blazer emblazoned with “Love” on the back in rhinestones, which many took as a response to Melania Trump’s controversial “I really don’t care, do u?” jacket, while meeting British Prime Minister Boris Johnson and his wife Carrie ahead of the G7 summit.
For the Vogue cover photoshoot, which was photographed by Annie Leibovitz, Dr Biden wore a navy, floral Oscar de la Renta dress.
With the recent feature, Dr Biden has resumed the tradition of first ladies appearing in the magazine, a tradition that was briefly interrupted during the Trump administration when Ms Trump was not featured in the pages of Vogue.