Inauguration Day is usually a day for iconic designer fashion statements. Both US President Joe Biden and second gentleman Doug Emhoff wore Ralph Lauren suits, while Vice President Kamala Harris’ vibrant purple coat came from Christopher John Rogers and first lady Jill Biden’s sparkly blue one came from Alexandra O’Neill. But amidst the jewel-tone coats and suits, former presidential candidate and Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders’ (I) fashion decision to wear muted colours and practical clothing is its own kind of statement. For the inauguration ceremony, Sanders wore a gray puffer coat, a surgical mask and oversized patterned mittens.
Sanders got the mittens from a local source: Jen Ellis, a teacher from Essex Junction, Vermont, who said she made them from repurposed wool and lined them with fleece. This is not the first time those cozy mittens have made an appearance. They were a frequent companion on Sanders’ presidential campaign trail and even have their own Twitter fan account.
His fashion statement stands out because it is not meant to stand out: Sanders is simply here to stay warm and socially distance, people. But his inauguration look inspired many interpretations of people who were struck by the senator’s pragmatic style. First, the internet kept things simple with a few funny comments:
But later in the day, people took it one step further and started superimposing Sanders’ inauguration look onto different scenarios, for hilarious results.