A $2,000 designer trench coat worn by Melania Trump has sparked a fierce debate – over its color.
While many who’ve seen photos of Melania, 49, striding across the green of the White House’s South Lawn to board Marine One, say she’s clearly wearing a navy coat, the garment’s designer, Scanlan Theodore, doesn’t appear to make one in that color, only black.
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Trick of the light? Melania Trump, pictured with President Trump, wore a shiny Scanlan Theodore trench coat at the College Football Playoff national championship game in New Orleans on Monday. Although it appeared to look blue, it’s actually listed as black on the company’s website
Blue is the color…or is it? Melania’s expensive coat appeared to take on a dark navy hue – but could the bright lights of the cameras photographing her have altered the shade?
The website of designer Scanlan Theodore tells a different tale, listing Melania’s trench coat in just two colors, black and cocoa
Even on the White House South Lawn, where the president and his wife picked up Marine One to jet to New Orleans for the game, the trench didn’t look entirely black
Or maybe it’s black? Different lights appeared to show a different shade. Right: Melania paired the shiny slicker with knee-high black stiletto boots
The fashion debate appears to be a presidential version of the famous ‘dressgate’ story that went viral around the globe in 2015 after millions of people couldn’t agree on whether a photo of a dress posted to Tumblr was black or blue.
With Melania’s coat, apparently it’s a closed case.
According to the website of Scanlan Theodore, the $2,000 garment, listed as a ‘leather trench’ comes in only two shades, black or cocoa.
The description of the black coat reads: ‘Leather Trench is made from 100% leather. It is cut for a loose fit but comes with a belt intended to be used to cinch in at the waist. It has a collar, long sleeves and button fastenings through the front. Also available in cocoa.’
MailOnline has contacted Scanlan Theodore for comment.
On the go: The couple flew to New Orleans to watch Clemson University and Louisiana State University duke it out at the College Football Playoff National Championship
Saying hi: Melania stopped to greet fans while walking across the South Lawn of the White House with her husband
Statement piece: The first lady looked sleek in her $2,000 belted leather coat by Scanlan Theodore
The presidential couple attended the football match, at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome in New Orleans, between Clemson University and Louisiana State University — two football powerhouses hailing from red states that Trump carried in the 2016 presidential election.
Melanie, 49, avoided wearing either team’s colors and stuck with the neutral, apparently all-black outfit.
She paired the shiny slicker with knee-high black stiletto boots, and she wore her highlighted brown hair in loose waves around her shoulders.
Standard: Trump donned his signature navy suit, red tie, and navy wool coat to keep warm
While the former model sported head-to-toe black, her husband had on his signature navy suit, red tie, and navy wool coat to keep warm.
Debate over the color of her coat has definite echoes of the now infamous ‘blue or black?’ dress story, which made the national news in 2015.
A picture of the dress was first posted on Tumblr by Caitlin McNeill, a 21-year-old aspiring singer from Scotland, after noticing her friends saw different colors in the photograph.
In 2015, the internet went wild over ‘dressgate’ after Caitlin McNeill, a 21-year-old aspiring singer from Scotland, sparked debate over whether this dress was blue or black
THE SCIENCE BEHIND THE COLOURS WE SEE ON CLOTHES
By Victoria Woollaston for MailOnline
Andrew Lotery, Professor of Ophthalmology in the Faculty of Medicine at the University of Southampton, told MailOnline that the difference in perception on colours could be due to lighting conditions, the device the image is being viewed on and even a person’s age and gender.
He explained that everyone has different combinations of the genes that create the sense of colour for red, green and blue and because these genes are on the X chromosome, women tend to have more variations.
As a result, women have a more dynamic range of colour so may be more susceptible and sensitive to specific colours. This may explain why women flip between seeing the different colours, and men typically don’t.
He added that some people have more than one ‘dose’ of a blue colour gene, as an example, so they will see higher or lower levels of this colour, too.
Additionally, as people get older their perception of colour changes.
The lens of the eye gradually yellows with age and this exposes more blue, continued Professor Lotery.
This will influence how deep or strong a colour appears and could explain why older people may see the blues and blacks rather than the whites and golds.
He gave the example that painters such as Monet and Rembrandt painted scenes when they were younger that were predominantly one colour, but the same scenes featured more red when painted later in life.
Elsewhere, Professor Lotery said: ‘The occipital lobe is responsible for actually processing the vision and there may be an element of optical illusion to [the photo of the dress].’
Many work by contrasting images and colours, and this contrast could explain the differences seen on the dress.
‘It’s quite a striking contrast between the black and the blue’ continued Professor Lotery.
‘For example, it could be that if the lighting conditions slightly changed, the person viewing the image is getting more stimulus on the blue photo receptor, for example, than the red.
‘On the balance of stimulating one a subtle change in angle could make it flip. This includes the type of room, the monitor, the lighting and so on.
Plus, if your brain is focusing specifically on the differences your vision may be on the cusp of colour recognition and this could cause the differences.’
Other conditions, such as the development of cataracts, changes the way people see the colour blue, and that could play a role too.
Signature style: Melania wore her highlighted brown hair in loose waves around her shoulders
Smart: Melania avoided wearing either team’s colors and stuck with a neutral, all-black outfit
Football fan: The national championship marks the third college football game Trump’s has attended this season
First stop: After a short helicopter ride, they arrived at Joint Base Andrews in Maryland
The image became an online sensation, with posts arguing over the dress’s original colours – and science behind the debate – being viewed and shared millions of times.
Even celebrities weighed in on the fashion debate, with Kim Kardashian asking her 29.4million Twitter followers to help settle a disagreement between herself and husband Kanye West.
There is science behind colour perception that can affect how a colour is interpreted.
During ‘dressgate’, Andrew Lotery, Professor of Ophthalmology in the Faculty of Medicine at the University of Southampton, told MailOnline that the difference in perception on colours could be due to lighting conditions, the device the image is being viewed on and even a person’s age and gender.