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May 8, 2007
The green monster!

Associated Press

After Monday night's swanky white-tie affair at the White House, it seems I've heard nothing but how much President Bush would rather wear flannel than formalwear.

Well, now I know why, and I don't blame him.

Without a doubt, there were more fashion "don'ts" showing up to fete Queen Elizabeth II and her hubby, Prince Philip, than there were gold-plated soup spoons.

Yikes! White tie doesn't suit most men of a certain age, with a certain size midsection. Mostly, they look like they're about to explode. With the exception of a couple of tall guys - NBC's David Gregory and NFL quarterbacks Peyton Manning and Tim Hasselbeck - the other gentlemen would have looked better in black tie.

Now for the women....

Where do I start? Are there absolutely no stylists in Washington, D.C.? In this humble fashion writer's opinion, I must say that the most horrifying ensemble had to be the lime-green, oversized winged jacket and dress worn by Lynne Cheney, wife of Vice President Dick Cheney (shown above with daughter Elizabeth L. Cheney and Philip J. Perry).

Lynne, if you're a Red Sox fan, I'm all for it. But you were wearing Fenway Park, a.k.a., the "Green Monster." And, I was sure she would remove the lethal jacket during the entertainment portion of the evening. But no, there she was, absolutely swathed in it.

First lady Laura Bush, in robin's-egg blue, looked OK. Nothing spectacular. As for many of the others, just because it's white tie doesn't mean the invitation also reads "big hair and giant collars required for the women."

So, did anyone get it right among the ladies? I liked the ensembles of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., "View" co-host Elizabeth Hasselbeck, and the president's niece, Lauren Bush, who showed up with designer Ralph Lauren's son, David, who harrumphed the invite and wore black tie.

So there.

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