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Image: Michelle Obama, left, and Barack Obama
Charles Dharapak  /  AP
President Barack Obama, right, and first lady Michelle Obama arrive at the North Portico of the White House for a state dinner on June 7, 2011, in Washington.
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updated 6/7/2011 8:26:52 PM ET 2011-06-08T00:26:52

On one of the first hot, summer-weather evenings of the season in Washington, Michelle Obama turned up the glamour with her dress choice for Tuesday night's state dinner at the White House in honor of German Chancellor Angela Merkel

Mrs. Obama shimmered in an all-over embellished gown by Naeem Khan. It was an ivory, V-neck column dress embellished with silver beads, white sequins and metallic thread in a geometric pattern — and she's back to what seems like her favorite seasonal sleeveless look, which shows off her famously toned arms.

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Khan also designed the gown Mrs. Obama wore to the first state dinner she and President Barack Obama hosted for the Indian prime minister in 2009. Thursday's look, in fact, was reminiscent of that outfit — which was considered a style success.

She accessorized with gold bangle bracelets by Alexis Bittar.

"You know she's going to make fashion statement — and you know it's going to be quirky or a little flamboyant — but it matches her vibrant and joyful personality," said fashion commentator Mary Alice Stephenson, who consults for Khan and helps style the designer's runway shows. "It's happy fashion. You want to look at it."

Stephenson said Khan is a good choice for Mrs. Obama because he can convey sophistication without losing a little wink and nod to the fantasy of fashion. "Like Mrs. Obama, his clothes are alive. ... They're classics but tweaked."

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His signature beading provides the exclamation point that Mrs. Obama likes to add to her outfits, Stephenson said.

White looks regal on the first lady — especially on an otherwise clean silhouette, she said.

Mrs. Obama also wore a white Tom Ford gown last month in London when attending a formal dinner hosted by Queen Elizabeth II.

Most of the guests to this state dinner, to be held in the Rose Garden, wore more standard-issue black, gray and deep blue instead. The exception was House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi, who pulled a two-piece white Thierry Mugler from her closet.

"Very old," she said.

Copyright 2011 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Photos: Michelle Obama’s effortless style

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  1. Michelle Obama's effortless style

    The first lady looks as sophisticated in designer dresses as she does in outfits from J. Crew. Take a look at her great style:

    First lady Michelle Obama and her mother Marian Robinson visit with Chinese President Xi Jinping and his wife Peng Liyuan at the Diaoyutai State guest house on March 21, 2014 in Beijing, China. (Andy Wong / Pool via Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  2. Ping-pong fun

    Michelle Obama plays table tennis at the Beijing Normal School, a school that prepares students to attend colleges overseas, in Beijing, China on March 21, 2014. (Andy Wong / AP) Back to slideshow navigation
  3. Welcome to China

    Michelle Obama waves as she and her daughter Sasha leave their plane at Capital International Airport in Beijing on March 20, 2014. (Alexander F. Yuan / Pool via AP) Back to slideshow navigation
  4. Green day

    Vice president Joe Biden, first lady Michelle Obama, and Irish Prime Mininster Enda Kenny's wife Fionnuala O'Kelly smile during a St. Patrick's Day reception in the East Room of the White House on March 14, 2014. (Ron Sachs / Pool / EPA) Back to slideshow navigation
  5. We're green with envy

    Kermit the Frog is welcomed by Michelle Obama at a screening of Disney's "Muppets Most Wanted" on March 12, 2014 in Washington, DC. (Win Mcnamee / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  6. Seeking shades

    President Barack Obama and Michelle Obama make their way to board Air Force One before departing from Homestead Air Reserve Base in Homestead, Florida on March 9, 2014. (Mandel Ngan / AFP - Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  7. Pretty prints

    Michelle Obama delivers remarks during s workshop titled "I'm Every Woman: The History of Women in Soul" with (L-R) Grammy Museum Executive Director Robert Santelli, and music artists Melissa Etheridge, Janelle Monae and Patti LaBelle in the State Dining Room at the White House March 6, 2014 in Washington, DC. (Chip Somodevilla / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  8. Jump to it

    Michelle Obama sports a chic black jumpsuit during an interview with Jimmy Fallon on Feb. 20, 2014. (NBC; Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  9. Pretty as a painting

    Michelle Obama, in a bold print skirt, is escorted by Rose Cameron, CEO and founder of WAT-AAH!, a line of bottled water targeted to kids and teens, as they view the "Taking Back the Streets" art exhibit at the New Museum in New York on Feb. 20. (Richard Drew / AP) Back to slideshow navigation
  10. Snow bunny

    Michelle Obama skis at Buttermilk Mountain in Aspen, Colo. on Feb. 15. This is the third year in a row that Michelle Obama has vacationed in Aspen over the long President's Day weekend. (Chris Council / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  11. Ultimate elegance

    President Barack Obama and Michelle Obama, in a dramatic Carolina Herrera ball gown, arrive at a state dinner at the White House on Feb. 11. The dress featured a sheer black top with hand-embroidered and beaded appliques and sleeves that dipped just below the first lady's elbows. (Jewel Samad / AFP - Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  12. Lady in red

    First lady Michelle Obama, French President Francois Hollande, and President Barack Obama wave at the balcony of the White House on Feb. 11. (Alex Wong / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  13. Deep green

    Michelle Obama, in a hunter green Azzedine Alaïa dress, waves next to U.S. Army Ranger Sgt. First Class Cory Remsburg, who was injured while serving in Afghanistan, prior to President Barack Obama's State of the Union speech in Washington on Jan. 28, 2014. (Joshua Roberts / Reuters) Back to slideshow navigation
  14. Vision in blue

    First Lady Michelle Obama smiles as she listens to President Barack Obama speak at an event on expanding college opportunity in the South Court Auditorium of the Eisenhower Executive Office Building in Washington on Jan. 16, 2014. (Mandel Ngan / AFP - Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  15. Bold bling

    Michelle Obama wore a festive lucite necklace while speaking about education in underserved communities in the State Dining Room following a screening of the movie "The Inevitable Defeat of Mister and Pete" at the White House on Jan. 15, 2014. (Saul Loeb / AFP - Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
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