Monday, March 8, 2010
What Not to Wear: When in Rome edition
Deciding what to wear to an evening wedding is challenging enough; imagine how daunting it is to choose proper attire for a papal audience.
Even the most seasoned president, prime minister and ambassador must struggle with deciphering proper protocol. But women, whether they are government leaders or the first lady, have to grapple with a lot more when they meet the pope.
The U.S. Embassy to the Holy See has a Vatican protocol primer that walks people through what is considered the proper dress code.
For men: black or dark suit, aka business attire, with a dark tie.
For women: black skirt or dress that reaches at least the knees, black top with mid- to long-sleeves, no pants, simple jewelry, dark closed-toe shoes, and a black hat or veil is optional.
A museum employee told CNS that dressing decently is a common courtesy; one is after all a guest in "a place deserving respect" when visiting the museums or a pilgrim in a place of worship when visiting the basilica.
Clothes do indeed make the woman and the man, and they can also make or break a visit to the Vatican.
[full Catholic News Service article]