Listen to the schoolteacher who made Bernie’s mittens

It seems more than one new star may have been born on Inauguration Day. There was poet Amanda Gorman, who wowed crowds with her recitation of “The Hill We Climb.” And then there were Bernie Sanders’ wool mittens.

Over the last day, images of Sanders have dominated social media feeds as the Vermont senator has received the meme treatment for his appearance at President Biden’s swearing-in ceremony. Sanders was seen sitting in the bleachers, clad in a parka from Burton Snowboards, a Vermont-based outerwear brand, and his hands nestled inside a pair of brown and cream mittens made from repurposed wool.

The mittens were gifted to him by Jen Ellis, a second-grade teacher in Vermont. Ellis made them back in 2016, when she was making presents for her daughter’s teachers. Sanders’ daughter-in-law owned the preschool, which was Ellis’ connection to delivering a pair to the senator himself…

In an interview with NPR’s All Things Considered, Ellis said the attention around the mittens actually started last winter when Sanders was on the campaign trail seeking the Democratic presidential nomination. She said she never expected them to garner such a big reaction, but she’s glad they’ve held up quite nicely.

Click through to the article which is headed by an audio recording of the interview with Jen Ellis. Below the article are a few excerpts. Enjoy!

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