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Thoughts On Sarah's Wardrobe

From Lisa Schiffren:

...a few days before Labor Day, lightening hit. The governor of Alaska turned into a vice-presidential candidate, who had to show up in front of the nation for the next 60 days, several times a day, always looking camera-ready, and impeccably turned out. She also had to project that new, somewhat amorphous thing: female power. We, as a nation, have not yet been led by a woman, and we aren't sure what it looks like. It will, of course, vary from woman to woman, depending on her personal needs and style, but not so much. Can't be too sexy, too severe, or too casual. For sure it requires perfectly fitted, constructed jackets, with a serious shoulder line, in good quality fabrics. Nowhere are those cheap. Palin had to look at least as good as the women we see on TV all the time. You may not realize it, but you don't see Katie Couric or Diane Sawyer or any of the on-camera female talent at the networks, CNN or Fox in off-the-rack stuff from Macy's. It is all upscale designer stuff, and at the low end it costs a couple of thousand per outfit. Always. Hair and make-up is done, professionally, any time you see them, at the cost of much time and money. That is the visual standard women at the upper end of politics must meet. Condoleezza Rice, who needed to project power, figured it out. Others have not. If Palin hadn't bothered with any of it, we would have heard about that too.

Had she been a creature of Washington, Palin would have had closet full of suits, unexciting, perhaps, but appropriate. Had she been a former First Lady running for president, whose husband has raked in $109 million in the last 8 years, she could have called Oscar de la Renta, and and had him come for a fitting. He did well with Hillary's jewel-toned pantsuits, (at a few grand a pop?). She might already have collected some of those great Gurhan necklaces, which accentuated Hillary's suits all election season. (Look up for yourself what they cost.) Were she Speaker of the House, and the wealthiest Democratic lawmaker, she could have called Georgio Armani himself -- and worn the Pelosi pearls that cost more than the Palin's house.

I think that this is a stupid and trivial issue. Can you imagine what the press would have made of her had she made campaign appearances in jeans and parkas?



bbbeard wrote:

"At least my candidate HAS clothes.... Your emperor is NAKED!"


Anonymous wrote:

"Can you imagine what the press would have made of her had she made campaign appearances in jeans and parkas?"


K wrote:

It isn't stupid or trival. If you will remember the Kennedy/Nixon debate hinged on Kennedy's dark suit and Nixon's light one which was wrong for TV.

It seems to me that Palin was obviously surprised as everyone else was at her sudden elevation into the limelight. Not an enviable situation by a long shot and her wardrobe left a lot to be desired. I base this on AP taking numerous photos from between her bare legs and the wierd "Sex in the City" look shoes.

The defacto female political bigwig uniform is either the Feinstein "Sunday go to meeting" skirt suit or the Hillary power (masculine) pantsuit look. Unlike virtually all the other women in high government Palin actually has some looks and style. Hopefully there will be some re-invention going on for the next go round.

The Tensor wrote:

...a few days before Labor Day, lightening hit

Wait, what? Palin bleached her hair?

Curt Thomson wrote:

Actually the Kennedy/Nixon debate hinged on Nixons 5-Oclock shadow and shifty eyes (trying to keep track of the time by frequently checking a wall clock).

II wrote:

Trivial? As compared to Edwards $400 haircut... Hmmm.

Theoretically, yes, maybe.

Practically. no, awful.

It's a PR disaster. DISASTER. Big Time.

ted sorenson wrote:

Two monthes of investigations, and this is what the AP comes up; They bought some clothes for her.
No one's really examined (or is likely to)determine how much of the 150 million dollars, to the Barak campaign is above board. They haven't called attention to Biden's 'consensual hallucinations' about Hezbollah, Katie's Restaurant's, the role of the Vice Presidency. It wasn't till two weeks ago, that we began to see how the out and out fraud in Ohio; both in phantom
registrations, and blocking legitimate absentee ballot requests. which the Court has unfortunately blocked any further inquiry into. Examining the extent of Obama and Ayer's malfeasance with regards to the CAC. Nothing of any substance.

II wrote:

Why would a hockey mom give up authentic real clothes that real Americans wear for that of the liberal elite?

That's what puzzles me.

Rand Simberg wrote:

It's a PR disaster. DISASTER. Big Time.

Another hilariously idiotic anonymous comment.

Why would a hockey mom give up authentic real clothes that real Americans wear for that of the liberal elite?

Her clothes aren't "of the liberal elite." Another moronic comment. She is simply well dressed, as most Americans would expect her to be when campaigning.

Rick C wrote:

"campaign appearances in jeans and parkas?"

Amusingly, that was actually good enough for her as Governor. I was watching a new series on TV last week about the Iditarod. It was filmed in March, and there's a short shot of her, merely identified as "Alaska governor Sarah Palin" and she was, indeed, wearing a parka. Which kind of makes sense given the weather.

II wrote:

I guess the implication of your comment is that she was badly dressed before. Which implies that Alaskan women dress poorly - she had to buy $150K worth of fancy clothes to be dressed properly .

What does your comment say about hockey Moms? Real values in shitty clothing?

You are in bitter-clinging territory here Rand. Be careful.

Rand Simberg wrote:

I guess the implication of your comment is that she was badly dressed before.

Like all of your guesses, that would be an idiotic guess.

She wasn't "badly" dressed before. But she wasn't dressed to run for Vice President of the United States.

II wrote:


How do you know?

How many 44 year old women have run for Vice President before? How about that sample size? And who decided how they should dress? Did someone take a poll..if so a link please....

I didn't know you watched America's Top Model, what with all the blogging and space stuff and flag waving you do. Well, now we know who to contact for fashion advice, and how to shake your booty.

The things we learn about you Rand. Tsk-Tsk.

Tom W. wrote:

II wrote:

The things we learn about you Rand. Tsk-Tsk.

Luckily, you are about as deep as the water in most kiddie pools (and consist of the same). It only takes one read of your drivel to know ALL about you.

Relating to this topic, I would simply like the press to report on how much the RNC/election fund paid for McCain's clothes, as well as how much the DNC/election fund paid for Obama's and Biden's. The fact they consistently forget about the Dem side just shows where their loyalties lie.

Carl Pham wrote:

II, once you go on the Ritalin, you shouldn't go off suddenly. Otherwise, you'll revert to the ADD obsessive behaviour that got you in trouble in the first place.

Plus, if you do it in public, like on a blog, a lot of people will laugh at you.

Like I'm laughing now.

Brad wrote:

Hmm...that 150 grand includes hairstyling, wardrobe and makeup for the entire Palin family. I wonder if that also includes the cost of flying around a team of professionals. Sounds more like the standard cost of showbiz politics rather than some outrageous vanity.

Hell, the pearls Speaker of the House Pelosi (D) wears probably exceeds that price.

walter kronkite wrote:

tell us Palin, when did you stop beating poor defenseless teatotaling mike wooten?

Dave wrote:

Let me add one thing that nobody (so far as I know) has yet brought up: Last year at this time, Sarah Palin was PREGNANT! She probably has a closet full of maternity clothes which obviously would not fit now. And her old clothes are...well, they're her old clothes. They would be at least one if not two years out of date. They would be perfectly suitable (no pun intended) for the Governor of Alaska to wear, if for no other reason that most Alaskans don't give a flying frap about what's "haute" in the fashion world. But that wardrobe would not befit (damn those puns!) a candidate for VPotUS.

Additionally, being a year or two old, they would be a little faded and a bit frayed. It may have been a look that worked for Andrew Jackson or Abraham Lincoln, but for better and for worse, this is not that era.

And who knows? She may have sold or donated or consigned her old wardrobe. Hell, she put the state jet on eBay so we already know that she doesn't keep things around too long.

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This page contains a single entry by Rand Simberg published on October 22, 2008 8:51 PM.

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