Bernie Sanders' Casual Yet Relatable Inauguration Outfit Wins Over the Internet

Bernie Sanders, Senator from Vermont, was well dressed for the cold weather at President Joe Biden's Inauguration ceremony.

By Kaitlin Reilly Jan 20, 2021 7:23 PMTags
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Biden, it's cold outside. 

On Jan. 20, President Joe Biden was sworn in as 46th president during the Inauguration Ceremony in Washington D.C., complete with performances by Lady Gaga, Jennifer Lopez and Garth Brooks. However, it wasn't just those superstars and their outfits that had social media buzzing.

Most of the politicians wore wool coats, with Vice President Kamala Harris and First Lady Dr. Jill Biden wearing matching bright-colored sets from young up-and-coming designers. However, Bernie Sanders, independent Senator from Vermont, took a different approach. He made sure to dress for the frigid D.C. weather in a thick, brown winter coat and brown Vermont wool mittens. 

Many people pointed out that the casual Sanders, who was also carrying around a manila envelope at the event, looked more like he was running errands than going to the Inauguration. One person on Twitter joked that the Senator was "dressed to stand on line at the post office."

Another added, "Shout out to Bernie Sanders showing up to the inauguration as if he's headed to the UPS store and picking up some coffee in Burlington."

Twitter user quipped, "Of course Bernie is walking in with an envelope. Hitting the post office later. Lotta errands today."

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Social media also honed in on Sanders' mittens. In addition to representing his home state—Sanders was mayor of Burlington before being elected to congress in 1991—Buzzfeed News reporter Ruby Cramer said that the mittens have another sweet meaning. 

"Bernie's mittens are made by Jen Ellis, a teacher from Essex Junction, Vt," Cramer tweeted. "She gave them to him 2+ years ago and was surprised when he began wearing them on the campaign trail. They are made from repurposed wool sweaters and lined with fleece made from recycled plastic bottles."

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Ellis made the mittens when Sanders was campaigning for the Democratic primary in 2016, she told Vermont newspaper Seven Days in January 2020, in order to show support for the candidate. 

"I just put in a little note that was like, 'I believe in you, I've always believed in you and I hope you run again,'" Ellis told the outlet at the time.

New York Times fashion critic Vanessa Friedman tweeted, "In all the inauguration fashion news, let us not overlook Senator Bernie Sanders' mittens."

Another tweeted, "Bernie rolling up solo in his ONLY coat with a manila envelope under his arm and fair trade mittens all the way on is BIG GRASSROOTS ENERGY. This man, a real one, clearly did not come for the pomp and circumstance."

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Added a fan, "Bernie just chillin in his mittens. ugh i love him so much."

For those who may find themselves outside for extended periods of time in less-than-toasty weather, you can try to hunt down Ellis' mittens at local craft fairs in Vermont.