Bernie Sanders' mitten designer is overwhelmed by orders
Jennifer Ellis will not however honor the thousands of requests. "It would spoil all the beauty of the thing," she said
She did not attend the nomination of Joe Biden but it is she, the star of the day. Jennifer Ellis entered the history of the United States on Wednesday thanks to Bernie Sanders and especially thanks to the famous mittens she sewed.
The 42-year-old teacher was leading, until Wednesday, "a quiet life" in her small town of Essex Junction, Vermont, she told AFP in a video interview. She was teaching her CE1 students online when her phone began to emit a series of "dings". Worried, she pauses to consult the messages: "Bernie Sanders wears your mittens to the nomination", they announced to him in substance.
Mittens to console Bernie
The story of these eco-friendly mittens (in recycled wool, lined with fleece made from recycled plastic bottles) is touching. Fan of the socialist senator convinced ecologist, Jennifer had sent him a pair of mittens after her defeat against Hillary Clinton in the Democratic primary for the 2016 presidential election, to console him. She knew from common knowledge that he liked them, nothing more.
Then last year, when "Bernie" tried again for the presidential election, she learned that he had lent the mittens to someone with cold hands. “I was so touched that I sent her 10 more pairs,” she says. This had already earned him a mini-buzz, but without comparison with the one around him since Wednesday: his phone rings constantly, his mailbox has exploded. And an endless number of memes have ignited social media.
13,000 orders in his mailbox
Much to Jennifer, who finds these memes "hilarious" at a time when "people need to laugh at things that are harmless, not political," after a particularly "trying" year. “I wish everyone more joy,” she said. “If you give something to someone (…) and it explodes, and the whole world is happy about it, that's great. "
She could take advantage of his sudden notoriety: in two days, she received "about 13,000 emails from people" ready to buy her the same mittens, "and not just a pair, they want a lot". But not only would she never be able to meet the demand, with her 30-year-old sewing machine and teaching job, but she also didn't even want to. "It would spoil all the beauty of the thing."
She prefers to spend her weekends with her family, with her five-year-old daughter. And "so much the better," she says, if others take advantage of this sudden enthusiasm for her mittens: models were found on Friday claiming to be absolutely identical to hers for $ 85 a pair on some websites.