Isabel Toledo on The Dress: I Wanted Michelle "To Feel Charmed"

We weren't the only ones pleasantly surprised to see Michelle Obama wearing a dress by Isabel Toledo at yesterday's inauguration. So was the designer herself!

“We’re all up here watching the T.V.,” Toledo told the New York Times, just as the ceremony was underway. “It’s great. We’re so happy.” The Cuban American designer says she was not absolutely sure that the First Lady would be wearing her look until it was there for all the world to see.

As for the unconventional color choice, Toledo, 48, says she "wanted to pick a very optimistic color, that had sunshine. I wanted her to feel charmed, and in that way would charm everybody.” Though the concept was all Toledo's own, the dress was a collborative effort, with 13 of Toledo's staff working to produce it over the holiday season. " “Chinese ladies, Polish ladies, Spanish ladies—I have a picture of everyone working on her clothes,” says the designer.

The effort certainly paid off. Though fashion insiders have already moved on to the gorgeous white gown by emerging designer Jason Wu that Mrs. Obama wore to last night's official Inaugural Ball, Toledo is officially a household name now, all thanks to one stylish yellow ensemble.