It was a dreary, rainy morning. I was in a dreary, rainy mood. On Election Day! Not good! But I was pleasantly surprised when my new voting location turned out to accommodate a long line in a large hall rather than outside in the elements. Moreover, the crowd proved calm and friendly.
But given the time of year and disagreeable weather, most of the voters weren’t exactly in party clothes. All the more reason I was delighted I’d dumped the dismal duds I thought of wearing in favor of the more flamboyant!
Okay, okay. I wasn’t really resembling a runaway from Cirque de Soleil, but I was determined to cast my personal ballot for Election Chic instead of Voting Geek.
As I stood in line – about an hour and fifteen minutes – I noted voters of all ages (and was pleased to see that), the scene was tranquil, people were polite, and volunteers were helpful. But musing on the mood and importance of the day, I wondered how many other people expressly “dressed for success” when they headed to the polls. Or at least, dressed with a specific intention.
Election Fashion and Style?
When it comes to fashion and style, is Election Day just another day? Do you grab whatever is handy, practical, or freshly laundered? Is there an element of superstition that “favors” a candidate?
Although I was surrounded by khakis, jeans, and generic dark sweaters and rain gear, I noticed a volunteer who kindly agreed to let me take a photo. She was dressed in black and white, with an eye-popping scarf and rain boots in polka dots. It was a jolt of energy and wit in an otherwise somewhat somber room. It was fabulous!
I also ran into a neighbor I hadn’t seen in several years. I have to say – not only was she lovely to chat with, but she was the epitome of chic – black jacket and fitted trousers, sweater top in Power Red, ruby glasses to offset her alabaster skin and blond hair. May I add she is a woman of a certain age? And stunning.
As for Yours Truly?
Writerly (Fashion) Statements
Yes, I wore black. (Hey, it’s my signature color.) But I actually took ten minutes for my makeup (I was trying to wake myself up… did it work?), and I purposely chose an oversize sweater in an upbeat color to feel energized. Deep fuchsia did the trick. I had my fave-of-all-faves scarf handy, black and white, which kept me warm later since the hall was a bit chilly.
I was curious to ask others their thoughts on Election Style – what they wore and why – and so I turned to some writers I respect and enjoy.
They’re all wonderfully interesting and talented (whatever they’re wearing), and they were good enough to answer my questions.
So here goes!
Maddie Kertay at Domestic Anarchy has a “uniform” she typically wears for certain occasions. (That does simplify things, doesn’t it?) She says:
I wore my “uniform”… to me it is a bit like flying.. these days most people dress to fly as if they are at some sort of sleep over.. hell I saw people this morning in flannel pants with moose on them! For me looking good is part of the respect of the process.. respecting how I look and the time I take to dress is part of my agreement with the world.
Gray cable knit tights, black boots, sweater dress hair in a french twist sort of top knot… a bright pink rain coat and green umbrella.
Let’s hear it for more color! Go Maddie!
Anne Parris at Not a Supermom says:
My girls wore red, white and blue. I wore a purple shirt because we are in a swing state!
Love that! There’s definitely some fun in the Parris Household Election Selection!
Lois Alter Mark went with her 2008 Obama t-shirt. Clearly it worked the first time, so why not go for the gold in the same way?
And she’s not the only one. Likewise, writer Myfanwy Collins, who sported her Obama Mama t-shirt from 2008.
Sharon Greenthal of Empty House Full Mind explains:
I wore workout clothes – walked first, then voted.
Pauline Gaines of Perils of Divorced Pauline channeled the 1960s. I suspect she’s secretly Very Audrey. She describes her outfit:
Laura Petrie pants and oversized grey and white striped shirt, black flats.
Cathy Walker Meyer writes:
I wore a sweatshirt and blue jeans. Comfort! I wasn’t going to dress my butt up to go to the polls!
Marci Rich doesn’t fool around! She seems to exhibit a real passion for fashion!
Grey denim jeans, black turtleneck with grey Eileen Fisher v-neck tunic, plus purple wool swing coat with black lapel and buttons that I bought in Greenwich Village in 1978. Black patent Cole-Haan shoes and my ever-present black Tumi purse.
She adds that she accessorized with her “I voted” sticker!
Mary Dell Harrington of Grown and Flown swears this wasn’t intentional, and yet –
Blue jeans, white turtleneck, red fleece… not deliberately patriotic…
The always savvy Une Femme (Deja Pseu) of Une Femme d’un Certain Age says her main consideration was being comfortable in the weather. She went with ease and style in this outfit (love the colors), and she describes her voting experience as smooth sailing.
Mindy Klapper Trotta says her straight-from-the-gym look was:
Not a pretty picture. Brown Lululemon yoga pants. Saucony running shoes. Big brown jacket and a sage green velvet hoodie under the brown jacket. Practically froze while waiting in line. No hat, no gloves–dumb.
And Chloe of Chloe of the Mountain? She voted in her scrubs!
Kristen at Motherese tells us:
I voted early and by mail. Picture yoga pants, fuzzy socks, and a glass of wine on the end table!
The incomparable Dana of The Kitchen Witch cooked up a quick response to my inquiry –
We always do mail-in ballots (because I hate people). Full outfit: glass of Chardonnay, stained yoga pants lacking elastic, white t-shirt, my husband’s hoodie, very warm socks. I know, I’m a Vanguard.
And incidentally, if you haven’t read the latest adventures of The Kitchen Witch, hop over there immediately. Prepare to laugh and cry, and send CARE packages of soft pillows along with good drugs…
Cecilia at Only You writes:
I wore blue intentionally for the Democratic Party but other than that… the blouse I chose was appropriate for the weather that day.
… sweat drenched bike shorts and a sweat shirt – pre-shower after my 7:10 AM class.
And if we had to vote for best response to the question? I give it to Kitch! But I love what Maddie had to say about dressing to respect the process.
And for dramatic effect and whimsy?
My vote goes to the very gracious volunteer who caught my attention to start with – and her kicky boots and scarf – not to mention her smile.
If we think these were long days? What about those who diligently sat for hours and helped us fill out cards and paperwork, checking identification and looking up records online, or explaining how to work the latest machine?
For all of the problems and disputes, and we know they are many, there’s so much that runs smoothly, with people of all political persuasions who participate in the process to ensure that it does.
To all of you who took the time to send pictures and answer my questions, I thank you. You’ve illustrated just how diverse we are in our priorities, our approach, our preferences – and yet we get along. Go figure.
To those who worked so hard behind the scenes, no doubt a thankless job, many of us do appreciate your efforts.
And we now return you to your regularly scheduled programming sans political ads.
We remind you that red and blue are great colors, but it’s time to set them aside as warring factions.
It’s a new day.