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Malia proves fashion chops on Obama ladies' trip to China

U.S. first lady Michelle Obama, third from right, her daughters Malia, right, and Sasha, second from right, is greeted by Chinese President Xi Jinping, second from left, and his wife Peng Liyuan, left, at the Diaoyutai State guest house in Beijing, China Friday, March 21, 2014. Photo: AP

She’s the First Daughter ... of fashion.

Malia Obama is stealing the spotlight from her stylish mom on the family’s weeklong trip to China.

Barack and Michelle’s 15-year-old little girl turned heads at a Friday photo-op with Chinese President Xi Jinping and his own first lady, Peng Liyuan when she donned a tiered, floral dress from Topshop.

“She’s the true star of the foreign photo op,” gushed US Weekly.

The $112 dress was the frock heard round the world. Even Matt Lauer’s daughter lusted after it — with the “Today” show host admitting Tuesday that he rushed out to buy the dress for his child only to learn the hard truth about trying to follow the First Family: it’s already sold out online.

“She looks like a model,” said Mary Alice Stephenson, style expert and founder of GLAM4GOOD. “She’s tall and thin and looks fantastic.”

Stephenson said Malia’s fashion sense was clear not only in her choice of outfits, but how she wore it.

“I love that she wore stockings with that look — it makes it more age-appropriate,” she says.

Sasha, 12, hasn’t been as enthused by the First Family’s trip, looking bored with the sights. And it didn’t just show on her flat countenance, but also in her uninterested couture — she wore a jeans and sneakers during an excursion to the Great Wall and a boring T-shirt to a Peking opera performance.

Meanwhile, at a school in Beijing, Malia looked like the perfect student in knee-high socks and a sophisticated, high-waisted pleated navy skirt. During the trek to the Great Wall, the teen refused to sacrifice style and opted for dark jeans and a belt, paired with a casual — but not sloppy — crew-neck knit.

The fashion forward trip to the Far East is just the latest step in Malia’s slow emergence as a teen fashion icon — all under the watchful eye of her style-loving mom.

Last year, Malia piqued interest with a perky purple J. Crew coat she wore to her dad’s second inauguration ceremony. A few months earlier on election night, she wore an iridescent blue ASOS skirt.

Both instantly sold out online.

It’s hard for any teenager to curate an individual style, but it’s even harder when the eyes of the world are on her — and her hemlines. Former first daughters like Chelsea Clinton and Amy Carter faced those same pressures living at the White House — and neither became fashion plates. Their Secret Service bodyguards dressed nicer.

Malia is the fashionable exception.

And there’s hope for Sasha — if she ditches those T-shirts.

“It’s appropriate for her age,” Stephenson says. 


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