LONDON – There weren't any hugs, like last time, but U.S. First Lady Michelle Obama shared a warm handshake with the British queen and gained more fans during her state visit to the U.K.
Mrs. Obama captured the nation's attention in 2009 when she affectionately put her arm on Queen Elizabeth II's back in a minor breach of protocol.
On Tuesday, Mrs. Obama started the day off when she briefly shook the queen's hand at a Buckingham Palace ceremony. Her three dress changes throughout the day were closely watched by the British media — the BBC, among others, spent much of its air time before the evening's white-tie state dinner excitedly speculating on what she might wear for the occasion.
Her choices — including her white Tom Ford evening gown — wowed fashion critics. The Guardian noted the tone of "cheerful informality" her day outfits imparted, and praised her for bringing "style and substance to the palace."
The first lady is expected to travel to Oxford on Wednesday to speak to London schoolgirls spending a day at the college town as part of a program she has supported since her last visit to England. The students are from the Elizabeth Garrett Anderson Language College, which Mrs. Obama visited in April 2009.
The Obamas are staying at Buckingham Palace during their brief visit.