Inspired by Kamala Harris: The Affordable and Ethical White Power Suit Outfit
On Saturday, November 7, 2020, Kamala Harris made history as the first Black and Southeast Asian woman to become Vice President-Elect of the United States. It was an incredible moment for our country and a huge step forward for women toward breaking barriers and serving in positions of power.
Her victory speech spoke to millions of women and people of color across the nation and instilled hope. “While I may be the first woman in this office, I will not be the last, because every little girl watching tonight sees that this is a country of possibilities,” Harris said.
While watching her deliver her powerful speech, I also fell in love with her iconic, white power suit moment--and so did the internet. Not only did she look radiant in the ensemble, but the color choice also was very intentional and has a deeper meaning. In 1913, the National Woman’s Party, a political organization formed to fight for women’s suffrage, adopted white, purple, and gold as their colors. In addition, many suffragettes wore white as a unifying color and democratizing uniform during marches and rallies, which provided more access for women of all backgrounds to dress the part and identify with the collective movement.
In 2016, Hillary Clinton wore a white pantsuit to accept her nomination at the Democratic National Convention. Earlier this February, the House Democratic women wore white to President Donald Trump’s State of the Union speech to honor the 100th anniversary of women’s suffrage and to stand in solidarity with the fight for women’s equality.
Throughout history, white pantsuits have made headlines and have been worn by generations of powerful, changemaking women. The original message of accessibility championed by suffragettes really spoke to us and we were inspired to create our own spin on an iconic outfit, with sustainable practices in mind.
Here at PRISM, we’re doing our best to encourage our community to be conscious consumers of fashion. We believe that we can make better, more sustainable choices with fashion without breaking the bank. This is our styling pick of the week, with our two tiers: ($) Affordable and ($$) Splurge picks for different price points. Here’s how to get the look.
Our team vetted the outfit for quality, price, and sustainable or ethical practices, so you can breathe easy and focus on what matters to you.
1. White Blazer
$ Affordable Pick: Ann Taylor Long Double Breasted Blazer ($119)
What we love about this product: The double-breasted jacket gives a classic silhouette a modern twist.
$$ Splurge Pick: Everybody & Everyone Totally Possible White Linen Blazer ($198)
What we love about this product: The buttons are biodegradable!
2. White Slacks
$ Affordable Pick: Ann Taylor The Petite Straight Pant in Linen Herringbone, White ($89)
What we love about this product: These pants are made from a blend contains linen, which is a biodegradable material that is better for the environment than traditional suit pant materials that is made of viscose, nylon, or polyester. It's important to note that the fabric is majority (54%) linen, but does contain polyester, viscose, and spandex.
$$ Splurge Pick: Theory Treeca Pull-On Pant in Good Linen, in white ($165)
What we love about this product: The pants are made from organic linen, eco-conscious viscose, and partially recycled elastane
3. White Shirt (with a bow around neckline)
$ Affordable Pick: Simons Contemporaine Recycled Crepe Tie-Neck Blouse ($60)
What we love about this product: This blouse is made of recycled polyester and generates up to 23% fewer carbon emissions and 43% fewer fossil resources compared to conventional polyester! Learn more about it here.
$$ Splurge Pick: Lilysilk Bow-Tie Neck Silk Blouse, in White ($99)
What we love about this product: This blouse is made of silk and is OEKO-TEX Standard 100 Certified, which means it’s eco-friendly and non-toxic! Learn more about it here. Silk is also a natural fiber that is considered to be more sustainable as it is a renewable resource and can biodegrade.
4. Clutch/Shoulder Bag
$ Affordable Pick: PRISM Emblem Convertible Bag, in Midnight ($50)
What we love about this product: It’s convertible and has pockets for your mask, sanitizer, and keys. You can wear it as a shoulder bag or carry it as a clutch for formal occasions. Plus, it’s made of a responsible, vegan leather!
$$ Splurge Pick: Saint Laurent Monogram Zip Pouch ($395)
What we love about this product: It’s an iconic, YSL clutch - we recommend purchasing through Poshmark or your favorite secondhand designer or luxury consignment store.
5. Nude Pumps
$ Affordable Pick: Nine West Tatiana Heels, in Beige ($47)
What we love about this product: Not all of us can afford Louboutins (if you can or already own a pair, great on you!) but these are a great pump choice for a wardrobe staple. It’s also made of faux patent leather.
$$ Splurge Pick: Huntd Classic Point, in Patent Nude ($169)
What we love about this product: These classic, pointed pumps are handmade and made from vegan materials. Read more about the company’s ethics here.
6. Subtle Gold Jewelry
$ Affordable Pick: Fair Trade Winds Mina Gold & Opal Stud Earrings ($40)
What we love about this product: These earrings are fair trade and each purchase helps women in Asia who have survived human trafficking transform their lives.
$$ Splurge Pick: Stone and Strand Tiny Princess Diamond Stud Pair ($270)
What we love about this product: The diamonds are ethical, responsibly-sourced, and conflict-free.
7. Red Lip (for some color)
$ Affordable Pick: ColourPop Ultra Blotted Lip, in Cypress Chill ($7)
What we love about this product: Affordable and pigmented, this ColourPop liquid red lipstick is 100% vegan.
$$ Splurge Pick: Beauty Bakerie Matte Lip Whip, in Cranberry Stiletto ($20)
What we love about this product: Beauty Bakerie is Black woman-owned and led brand. The product is also vegan and the company contributes to several social causes. Learn more here.
For more of our style picks and takes on guilt-free, sustainable, and accessible style and career tips, join our biweekly SPECTRA newsletter here! Until then, we’re sending you lots of positivity (and reminding you to take care and drink enough water today).