The ‘very American’ look

The Obamas arrived in the UK yesterday and not surprisingly it was all over the news this morning. Except the main important thing that most of the news talked about was ‘what was Michelle Obama wearing?’.  It started with her outfit from getting off Air Force One last night at Stansted Airport (now I can say the President of the United States has been to Essex) to meeting Mr and Mrs Brown at No. 10 this morning.   The funniest thing I heard today about her outfit for meeting the Browns was by the style editor from Grazia magazine saying that the outfit was ‘very American’. She’s sharp that one!  I wonder if the American editors of Vogue say that Sarah Brown looks very British when she is over there. Actually I doubt that they take any notice of what Sarah wears as most British First Ladies (I’m not sure what title to give them) are normally quite conservative in their dress sense and look like a typical wife/mum. That is to say they aren’t the most striking of individuals compared to Michelle Obama. Obviously, Laura Bush would fit in very well with the British party on the fashion stakes.

So, the ‘very American’ look was a pencil skirt in a light green with a sparkly white cardigan. Admittedly, the Americans do have a certain work look – twin sets for the girls and chinos with checked shirts for the boys (and I’m not going to comment on if I like those looks or not…). I always remember a colleague asking an American colleague what was the dress code for our first company trip to America – the answer was slacks/pants and button down shirts/polos/sweaters/sweater set (can’t you just tell that I keep every email that I have received). To us limeys we all had a good giggle about not forgetting our pants and wondering what the hell was slacks and sweater sets. Anyway, I believe we all managed to dress appropriately, though now if I was going again to meet up with everyone I would most probably be much more casual as I have feeling that most Americans (especially the Californians) think the British are a bit formal with work wear. I wonder if the whole of the US company came over to London would we get asked what is the dress code? What would the answer be, if so? Would they understand smart jeans and trousers with shirts, tops or jumpers? Or just giggle at it and think we are all bonkers.

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2 Responses to “The ‘very American’ look”


  1. 1 Nicola April 3, 2009 at 11:30 am

    Hey Michelle

    I can tell you now that if you say ‘Jumper’ to an American they will giggle. Quite a lot! And when you think about it it is a funny name for a piece of clothing. Nx

  2. 2 Michelle Best April 3, 2009 at 10:42 pm

    Hi Nicola – thanks for the comments. I will have to remember that next time it is chilly and I’m chatting with the Americans, just to see the response I get. 🙂


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