In preparing her wardrobe for her official state visit to Japan, Melania Trump heeded common advice about proper business attire in that Asian country, opting for simple, elegant and sedate skirts and coats for meetings with Japanese officials, including with Emperor Akihito and his wife Empress Michiko.
The advice about proper business attire in Japan, provided on various websites for Western business travelers, says that men and women should dress tastefully and above all, conservatively.
While the country is fashion forward, people in business settings shouldn’t try to stand out too much, with colors that are too bright or with outfits, like women’s short skirts, that are too revealing, the sites say.
“Mrs. Trump always wants to be thoughtful and respect the traditions and protocols of the countries she visits,” her communications director Stephanie Grisham told CNN. “She knows she is representing the United States, and wants to be sure she is appropriate in all that she does.”
According to one site for Western travelers, more communally-minded Eastern cultures stress the importance of society over the individual, which means it can be considered bad form to try to show off too much or to exert yourself above your co-workers or others you are meeting.
Japan was the first stop on President Donald Trump and Melania Trump’s 12-day tour of Asia.
Ahead of their arrival, Ivanka Trump, faced some criticism for wearing a bright pink mini-skirt when she joined Prime Minister Shinzo Abe on stage at the Japanese government’s World Assembly for Women conference.
Ivanka Trump, a senior White House advisor to her father, was there to give a speech on female entrepreneurship. Ivanka Trump’s outfit was definitely attention-grabbing, with a notably short skirt.
While some Japanese women attending the sparsely attended speech thought Ivanka Trump looked glamorous and chic in her shiny pink suit — reportedly by Italian design house Miu Miu — other Japanese thought the skirt hemline, falling just to mid-thigh, was too short for an official occasion, the New York Times reported.
Several commentators on the Asahi TV network noted that her suit was “rather short” for a presidential adviser, while others on Twitter agreed that it was too short to meet Japanese officials.
Melania Trump sparked no such debate with her clothing choices, starting with the wool coat by Italian fashion house Fendi that she wore when she exited Air Force Once in Tokyo Sunday.
The coat was in muted colors of black, gray, orange and rose stripes, according to CNN fashion writer Kate Bennett.
Melania Trump wore the coat, with a pencil skirt and her signature stiletto heels, while visiting the Mikimoto Ginza Main Store in Tokyo’s fashionable Ginza district with Japanese First Lady Akie Abe, who was dressed in similar muted tones of a long-sleeved white blouse and a calf-length black-and-white print skirt.
For dinner Sunday night, Melania Trump and Aki Abe looked even more color-coordinated in black dresses when they dined at a Tokyo restaurant with their husbands.
For their second day in Japan, Melania Trump and President Trump met with Emperor Akihito and Empress Michiko at the Imperial Palace. For that tradition-bound occasion, the first lady wore a navy mid-length Dior dress, with angel sleeves and cinched waste that revealed only a flash of ankle.
The first lady also wore that dress when she and Mrs. Abe visited a Tokyo elementary school. There Melania Trump practiced her Japanese calligraphy skills, joining her Japanese host in writing the characters for the word heiwa, meaning “peace” in Japanese, before leaving the building to the sounds of “Over the Rainbow” played by the school band, Newsweek reported.
Melania Trump finally opted for color, a soft red, for the flowing, floor-length Valentino gown she wore to a state banquet at the prime minister’s Akasaka Palace.
There, Donald Trump reportedly complimented Abe on his choice for his wife, according to Bloomberg News reporter Jennifer Jacobs.
Trump says he thinks Abe did very well marrying Mrs. Abe.
— Jennifer Jacobs (@JenniferJJacobs) November 6, 2017
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