I’ll be honest — when I first woke up to watch the 2021 presidential inauguration, I never expected to be so thoroughly moved and sartorially inspired by Bernie Sanders’s salient accessories. Perfectly frumpy, cozy, and yes, chic, the Vermont senator’s mittens that he famously wore on the campaign trail made their Washington DC debut in all their glory. And it didn’t take long for the wonderfully oversize mittens, which have their own Twitter stan account, to go viral once again.

According to intrepid BuzzFeed reporter Ruby Cramer, the mittens are the brainchild of Jen Ellis, a local teacher from Essex Junction, VT. As the story goes, Ellis gifted Sanders the mittens and was both shocked and surprised when he wore them while campaigning for president (talk about a prime placement!). Sanders completed the look with a Burton jacket for extra warmth.

And in true Vermont fashion, Sanders’s mittens of choice are sustainable — they’re made using repurposed wool sweaters and lined with fleece from recycled plastic bottles. Which, if you think about it, makes perfect sense considering he was a strong supporter of the Green New Deal. (We all know that the clothing industry is a big polluter.) Could Bernie Sanders be fashion’s next great style icon? Only time will tell.

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