Ann Romney channels Nancy Reagan in $1,990 red Oscar de la Renta dress

Ann Romney channels Nancy Reagan in $1,990 red Oscar de la Renta dress

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UPDATED:

19:44 GMT, 29 August 2012

First lady hopeful Ann Romney comfortably played the role of presidential wife last night as she took to the stage wearing a bold 'Reagan red' coloured dress.

The 63-year-old plumped for a $1,990 Oscar de la Renta belted design as she delivered her speech in Tampa, which was hoped would help ‘humanise’ her husband and illustrate a softer side.

The American designer was a safe
choice for Mrs Romney – who has been married to Republican presidential
candidate Mitt for 43 years – as he's dressed every First Lady for the past three decades bar Michelle Obama.

Lady in red: Ann Romney waves to crowds as she walks on stage during the Republican National Convention

Lady in red: Ann Romney waves to crowds as she walks on stage during the Republican National Convention

She paired the modestly cut, v-neck silk frock, which is from De la Renta’s pre-fall 2012
collection, with black kitten heels and gold bracelets.

During the afternoon, aboard the
Romney plane where she handed out Welsh cakes to reporters and staff, Mrs Romney revealed that she was still undecided on what
she would wear for the RNC speech.

However she hinted that her husband and campaign advisers would have the final say.

Nancy Reagan, who was First Lady from 1981 to 1989, is regularly seen wearing fire engine red

Nancy Reagan, who was First Lady from 1981 to 1989, is regularly seen wearing fire engine red

Talking about her husband’s senior political adviser, who helped
craft his jeans and rolled-up sleeves ensemble during the 2012
campaign trail, she joked: 'The funniest thing of all is that
Stuart Stevens, who wears his shirts inside out, is advising me on what
dress I should wear tonight, so I know I’ve come really full circle
now.

'Frankly, I didn’t realize that
Stuart had to weigh in on this – or my husband. It was going to be like
my wedding night; I wasn’t going to let him know what I was going to
wear. But now they have opinions.'

While it is still unclear if her
speech was successful in swaying voters, many critics have applauded her
on her wardrobe choice.

Fashionista noted:
'It’s hard to deny that she looked great and delivered her speech
well–she was comfortable in that dress and behind the podium.'

Congratulations: Mitt Romney took the stage at the end of his wife's speech her and embraced her

Congratulations: Mitt Romney took the stage at the end of his wife's speech her and embraced her

Heartfelt: Mrs Romney practiced what she had been preaching in a warm moment with her husband

Heartfelt: Mrs Romney practiced what she had been preaching in a warm moment with her husband

Public display of affection: Mrs Romney's description of her love for her husband was effusive

Public display of affection: Mrs Romney's description of her love for her husband was effusive

While the Financial Times said: 'It was a meaningful choice, alluding to Washington tradition as well as the LA-NY-DC financial/social nexus, for whom Mr De La Renta is a go-to name.'

De la Renta, 80, was born in the
Dominican Republic, studied fashion in Madrid, and launched his his
career as couture assistant in Paris.

Currently based in New York he has helped shaped the style of
every First Lady since Nancy Reagan.