The Super Sweet Story Behind Bernie Sanders’ Inaugural Mittens

A Vermont schoolteacher is responsible for #BerniesMittens, and we're simply obsessed.

Are you watching the inauguration? Did you happen to see Senator Bernie Sanders wearing a pair of knit mittens? Because we did, and we’re obsessed with their very adorable backstory.

First, just look at Bernie arriving at Joe Biden’s inauguration with his mittens:

Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders is seen on the phone before US the inauguration of Joe Biden as the 46th US President on January 20, 2021, at the US Capitol in Washington, DC. (Photo by SAUL LOEB/POOL/AFP via Getty Images)

BuzzFeed reporter Ruby Cramer tweeted that Bernie’s mittens were made by a Vermont teacher named Jen Ellis, who made them for the Jewish senator over two years ago, and is surprised to see that he still wears them.

Ellis tweeted a picture of all the mittens she made — from repurposed wool sweaters, lined with recycled fleece! — with the very adorable hashtag #BerniesMittens:

So how did the mittens make their way to Bernie? Ellis makes mittens at craft fairs and gives them to her friends. Bernie’s daughter-in-law Liza runs Ellis’ daughter’s daycare, so one holiday, Ellis made mittens for Bernie. “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 said in January 2020. “And now he is running again, and he apparently is wearing the mittens that I made for him!”

The mittens first went viral last January at the Women’s March in New Hampshire. As Sasha Goldstein reported in Seven Days, “Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) is known for his frumpy and unkempt attire. His latest sartorial choice, mittens he wore during the Women’s March on Saturday in Portsmouth, N.H., certainly made an impression. The oversize mittens, called ‘oven mitts’ by some, went viral online and soon had their own @BerniesMittens Twitter account.”

Yes, really:

And now, a series of very good tweets about Bernie and his mittens:

We love you very much, Bernie’s mittens.

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