It’s all the news that the Republican National Convention spent almost $150,000 on professional clothing for Sarah Palin and her family. This has caused all kinds of debates and more warring on if it matters and who really cares.
To some pundits, it’s a huge deal that the RNC paid for it where other political figures spend their own money on overpriced pants suits and haircuts, so it gets into the legality of campaign funds.
Others see it as money well spent as she looks good and needed to maintain her professional edge or she would get ripped apart for that.
Some give a big “Who cares!” because we should be sticking to the issues and not caring about something as shallow as clothing and fashion.
Or, we have the cries of sexism which are really unfounded, since we’re not discussing the merits of high heel pumps verses a well made loafer or boot. No one cares if the costs were for skirts or pants, or just complaints about the make-up tab. It’s not sexism.
The thing is, all these things factor into the issue; it’s not just the clothes we question Sarah Palin about or the cost of the clothing, but the choice to wear designer clothing at retail prices. It’s again, a decision she made, and we need to question if that is a well-made decision.
We have to wonder: what was Sarah Palin thinking wearing designer clothes bought at full retail price?
There is the most obvious issue: Sarah Palin portrays herself a regular old hockey mom and she calls herself a Washington Outsider. If you like Sarah Palin for these attributes, then let’s face it: Regular old hockey moms don’t wear $4,000 designer blazers and pumps that cost more than a monthly mortgage payment. If she is running on the “Washington Outsider” claim, then don’t go off and act just like the Washington Insiders do! It makes her claim look phony and untrustworthy and, if she believes that this is how hockey moms look, totally out of touch and elitist.
Then we can look at the whole economic mess. Isn’t Sarah Palin supposed to be figuring a way to get the country out of the current situation our country is in? And wouldn’t that make cost cutting and frugality a much desired skill for the new administration to harness? Wouldn’t she be smart politician by demonstrating to the public that she possess this skill as a smart shopper? Wouldn’t she have proven that she looked good AND was smart too if she had just shopped at Loehmann’s?
Granted, I bet it felt great to have people pawning over her and going shopping for her, bringing her back all these lovely treats. Most women would not turn down perfect designer footwear and most of us were raised on stories of Cinderella where beautiful clothing can transform us and allow us to live happily ever after. That’s why movies like Pretty Woman did so well. We eat this stuff up.
But the vice president has to do more than look pretty. Pretty is just a bonus. If they make it, then we hope Sarah Palin does not get elected due to how she looks in a skirt, no matter what the designer name or price tag. We can only hope she gets elected for what goes on inside her perfectly coiffed head. So even if she was thrilled with the pretty new clothes, even if they were “making” her wear them, even if she was just trying to make McCain proud; it makes one wonder what else she might blindly do because someone told her too.
Right now it is just a case of “wear these shoes,” but what happens when you replace stylist with lobbyist and “wear these shoes” becomes “push this special interest”? We need the next group of policy makers to ask the hard questions.
Even if she didn’t go shopping for herself (and she didn’t), the stylists and handlers could have thought twice about paying full price within this economy, with the image they want her to portray. Or, better yet, when she looked at the red patent leather pumps, if she really is like any of us regular folks, the conversation should have gone like this:
Stylist: Mrs. Palin, we want you to wear these pretty pumps with your black suit, it will give it pop!
Palin: Oh, these are lovely. The leather is so soft. Who makes them?
Stylist: They are the latest from xyz designer. They come from Neiman Marcus.
Palin: They look expensive. How much did you pay for them?
Stylist: Oh … $700 something or were they $1899.99 ones? I forget (shrugs).
Plain: WHAT? Are you crazy I can’t put seven hundred dollar shoes on my feet!
That is Joe the Plumber’s monthly mortgage!
That’s not what a hockey mom from Alaska wears!
Stylist: Well, you’re not in Alaska anymore, Mrs. Palin.
We all wear $700 pumps in the White House.
Palin: Well I don’t and I won’t start now. I don’t care.
You can shop better than this!
Get thee to Loehmann’s!
If those headlines had been:
“Sarah Palin Refuses Expensive Make-over and Insists that the RNC Shops at Discount Designer Stores like Loehmann’s” then it would not be “Fashion-Gate” it would be “Sarah Palin is a Smart Shopper and Looks Great!”
After all, if Loehmann’s prices are 35 to 65 percent off normal prices, than that averages to 50 percent, so the Palin “fashion gate” bill is already reduced from 150K to 75K. Add in that coats are still an additional 20 percent off this week, and known designer apparel is often marked down even more in the Back Room, it’s no unrealistic to think that Sarah Palin really could have had the same vice presidential road to the White House look for a third of what was spent.
To any serious shopper, we know what that means ... an excuse to buy even more shoes!
For a hopeful vice president, it means looking smart and stylish while showing America that you understand the value of a dollar, can pinch the pennies when needed, know how to stick to your ethics, morals roots, and values no matter how pretty, or expensive, a high heel pump is. It would have really made her more like one of us.
To avoid this in the future, we have created a present for Mrs. Plain—her very own acount at Loehmann’s Insider Club.
With this, she can get Loehmann’s coupons and see the great designer clothing in the mailers and emails. Alas, there is not a Loehmann’s in Alaska, but there is Loehmann’s in DC.
As any good American knows, Loehmmn’s is the only way to get the very best in discounted designer threads for much much less!