All of morning TV’s eyes were on Megyn Kelly Monday morning, as she debuted her own morning show on NBC. Keen viewers noticed that she seemed to be making a statement about the move — with her outfit.
For the inaugural episode of Megyn Kelly TODAY, Kelly and presumably a team of stylists decided she would wear black trousers and a pink pussybow blouse. (Coincidentally, guest Megan Mullally, who was on to promote the premiere of Will & Grace, wore a very similar top.) The outfit, while simple, is notable for a few reasons.
Kelly comes to NBC after a controversial stint on Fox where, in a rule straight out of 1919, women weren’t allowed to wear pants on Fox & Friends. On-air host Gretchen Carlson confirmed the rule, which has apparently been amended since the ousting of Roger Ailes. But in choosing not to wear a skirt on her first day at a competing network, Kelly is perhaps throwing subtle shade to her former employer.
Up top: A pink pussybow blouse. There’s a feminist history behind the style. As CEO of Hewlett-Packard Meg Whitman revealed in a PBS documentary, she first wore the style to feminize the suit-and-tie look that their male counterparts wore to the office: “We used to dress in suits with a skirt and a jacket with button-down shirts and a little bow tie, because that was sort of our interpretation of the man’s tie. She continued, “It was our attempt to be feminine but fit into what was then a male world.” The title isn’t even a coincidence — since they were invented to be a feminized version of the male business dress code, they were literally named after female genitalia. Whether Kelly was aware of it or not, she was summoning a feminist history by wearing one as a woman on television.
Style watchers may also remember the night during the election when Melania Trump wore a $1,100 Gucci pussybow blouse. In the debate shortly after her husband’s Access Hollywood “grab ’em” tapes were released, Trump wore a shirt that seemingly referenced her husband’s controversial remarks. She paired them with matching trousers — a surprise choice as Hillary Clinton is well-known for her pantsuits. Social media was quick to point out that the ensemble could hardly be seen as a coincidence.
While Kelly may or may not have been trying to send a message with her clothing, viewers still readily examined them.
Megyn Kelly is wearing a pussy bow shirt
— Emily Cohn (@emily_cohn) September 25, 2017
Megyn Kelly’s debut outfit on the ‘Today’ show is similar to one of Melania Trump’s most infamous outfits — and it could be a subtle dig at…
— Ondernemer tweets (@Ondernemertweet) September 25, 2017
If she did it on purpose, it's pretty funny. And if she did it by accident, it's even funnier. "Pussy Bow"! https://t.co/qfMCuq7iti
— Ana Navarro (@ananavarro) October 10, 2016
In Kelly’s opening, she addressed and immediately distanced herself from any expectations that she’ll be reporting on politics. “Next we’ll be dissecting the latest tweet from President Trump! Oh wait, we will not be doing that. The truth is I am done with politics for now,” she said.
Kelly may have said she’s leaving the past behind, but her pussybow speaks differently.
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