You would think with awards season in full swing, the world's biggest designers would have their hands full creating frocks for A-list movie stars. But the one body that everyone from Oscar de la Renta to Michael Kors is dying to dress belongs to neither a Jolie nor a Winslet. There's only one dream muse of the moment, and she happens to be the incoming First Lady. Michelle Obama's savvy style and fashion choices have lit up the blogosphere and inspired more commentary than any other First Lady - at least not in the past four decades. Laura Bush was safe and low-key, opting for skirt suits and genteel frocks. Hillary Clinton was the queen of pantsuits and Barbara Bush was nicely presented in a Queen Mum sort of way. Then along comes a First Lady of the like the US has never seen before: a curvy, 1.83-metre glamazon with definite tastes and a predilection for daring choices. It's not surprising that the word 'icon' is being bandied about rather liberally in association with her. With the inauguration just around the corner, all eyes will be on Obama's choice of dress. Will she go for something classically elegant from Carolina Herrera or opt for something edgier from one of her faves, designer Maria Pinto? Will she choose a basic black or select one of the bold hues for which she has become famous for (remember that purple sheath dress with the big black belt?) Floral or plain? Billowing or slender? A week before her husband's induction, the scuttlebutt around town was that Obama was deciding between 'two or three' gowns, according to a fashion publicist close to the proceedings. Among them is Pinto, as well as Kai Milla, a newcomer to the international fashion scene who also happens to be married to music legend Stevie Wonder. Because if Barack Obama is a rock star of a president, it's only fitting his wife is a rock chick of a First Lady. Milla, who has created outfits for Oprah Winfrey, Eva Mendes and Salma Hayek and is known for her red carpet looks, is calling her latest offering the 'Inaugural Collection 2009'. Her bottom line: even if one of her creations doesn't make it onto the Obama body on Tuesday, at least everything will be camera-ready for the Oscars. Even in LA, on the opposite end of the country from the site of the inauguration, it seems the event is all that people are talking about. One LA friend managed to score an invite to the ball. Her biggest concern: what to wear (she found a Diane Von Furstenberg on sale, lucky thing.) Beverly Hills designer Susanna Chung Forest, who owns the Susanna Beverly Hills boutique and has long made custom clothes for women in power, will also be there, accompanying her friend Hillary Clinton, for whom she has designed heaps of pantsuits in the past. 'Whatever Michelle Obama chooses should be simple and not overpowering and busy-looking,' Chung Forest said. 'Before her, only Jackie Kennedy and Nancy Reagan were really elegant as First Ladies. Michelle will probably grow into that, but it can't happen overnight.' The fashion-obsession on both coasts is phenomenal. Last summer, Vanity Fair magazine included Obama on its International Best-Dressed List for the second year in a row. Writer Amy Fine Collins described Obama's taste at the time: 'Michelle Obama connects to the modern woman. She has a real woman look to her but is even bigger and better. She has a sleek style that's not overdone ... She's beautifully dressed without too much fuss. She puts on the dress and goes - and it's always a good dress.' One of the reasons that people connect with her, say fashion insiders, is because she doesn't just adhere to big-league designers out of reach of most women. She has worn a J. Crew sweater and pieces from The Gap. When she appeared on The View in a sweet black-and-white dress by Donna Ricco, the US$148 dress sold out virtually overnight. In that regard, Obama has the potential to become the ultimate celebrity endorser - although some cynics aren't so sure. 'She'll continue to influence sales, especially if she keeps mixing and matching her outfits with off-the-rack designers women can afford from time to time,' says Danielle Belton, who chronicles the incoming First Lady's choices on her blog, BlackSnob.com. 'But I doubt she'll become the winning salvo to save the fashion industry. Sadly, retail is not a recession-proof industry, even with a trendy First Lady who takes fashion risks.' In the meantime, Belton is hoping the obsession with what's in Obama's closet doesn't overshadow the more substantive things that a new First Lady should be getting on with. 'The fashion icon thing is a tad overstated,' she says. 'She's the First Lady, not Donatella Versace. She'll be aspirational for women who are trying to balance power and femininity in their dress, because that's basically the look Michelle typically goes for. 'But I think people will stick to their Hollywood icons, supermodels and musicians for fashion muses.'