Designer Maria Pinto closing retail shop

July 20, 2010 11:16:05 AM PDT
The Chicago designer behind some of Michelle Obama's high-profile fashion picks is closing up shop. Maria Pinto has dressed the first lady along with Oprah Winfrey and other Chicago socialites.

The Michelle Obama favorite says she's ending her business operations and closing up her retail boutique on Jefferson Street because of "increasing economic challenges."

Pinto launched her namesake line in 1991 and opened up her first shop in 2004.