Merkel got tongues wagging again after appearing at Queen Elizabeth II's Wednesday night reception in a black-and-white pantsuit, not a skirt or dress – a grave fashion faux pas for those who adhere to the rules of the realm.
German government spokesman Thomas Steg defended Merkel on Friday, saying he hadn't heard any of the backlash against Merkel's choice of a pantsuit for Buckingham Palace. Merkel's appearance in London was “harmonious and successful, including the apparel,” Steg said, adding that Merkel was more worried about regulating hedge funds at the world financial summit in Great Britain “than about discussing skirt hemlines.”
Steg said that tie colours chosen by male politicians are rarely discussed, while females are often subject to scrutiny. He offered up a simple explanation of Merkel's fashion sense, noting that it is always “appropriate” and fits with her “inner form,” though sometimes the clothing is less colourful or revealing than others might choose.
In April last year, Merkel sparked a fashion news frenzy by donning a black and navy blue velvet evening gown that showed a daring degree of décolleté. Steg said at the time he had been flooded with questions about the dress and the unprecedented amount of chancellor cleavage.
"That this dress caused such a furore, seemed excessive to the chancellor," Steg told reporters at the time. "She was not distraught as the reporting was quite kind and she received many compliments, but if the world has nothing more important to do than to talk about or report on evening dresses, what can one do?"