The Humble, Gracious, Beautiful Meaning Behind Hillary’s Last Campaign Pantsuit

Refinery29
Nov 10, 2016 · 2 min read
PHOTO: JUSTIN SULLIVAN/GETTY IMAGES.

As Hillary Clinton’s year-and-a-half long bid for the White House neared its end, pantsuits — the Democratic candidate’s unofficial uniform on the campaign trail — became a more powerful symbol than ever for her constituency.Secret Facebook groups were formed in solidarity. On Election Day, many voters wore their own interpretations of the matching set to support the first female candidate for a major political party. (Some donned suffragette white, others opted for an array of bright hues.) No matter theoutcome, much attention would be paid to Clinton’s clothing choice after the election results rolled in. When it came time for the former Secretary of State to concede the race to Donald Trump, it looked as if she was indeed trying to send a message with her ensemble.

Clinton stepped onstage in a dark-gray suit with a bright purple satin lapel and shirt. (Former president Bill Clinton, who stood behind his wife, wore a tie in a similar shade.) It’s not a color she’s worn often on the trail. But the choice may have reflected much of what Clinton was communicating in her concession speech: the need for unity.

Purple is the combination of red and blue — the two hues that battled it out, state by state, until very late last night. This likely wasn’t a random style choice. Could it be a call for Democrats and Republicans to work together throughout the upcoming term?

The regal hue is also included in the historical palette of the women’s suffrage movement, which Clinton has referenced throughout the campaign, according to Time. Plus, purple symbolizes both royalty and penitence in the Methodist faith, a religion Clinton has identified with in the past, per the Boston Globe’s Matt Viser.

Given the weight of the optics on this specific speech, many applauded Clinton’s color choice. (An added bonus: Clinton even shouted out her Pantsuit Nation in her speech, reminding them to make their voices heard.)

Following a hard-fought campaign that involved many different standout ensembles, we’d say this is Clinton’s best pantsuit yet.

Related: The Emotional Aftermath Of Facing America’s Racist Reality

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