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Bloomberg Brightens Emergency Weather Briefings With Eye-Catching Sweaters

By Jill Colvin | February 8, 2013 6:47pm

CITY HALL — Another weather emergency, another colorful sweater.

As storm clouds gather and flurries fall, Mayor Michael Bloomberg has made it a tradition to don casual, colorful sweaters while discussing serious weather scares.

Throughout Hurricane Sandy, Bloomberg showed off a veritable runway show of summer-colored classics, from a periwinkle v-neck to a pumpkin pullover that appeared coral pink on some TVs.

And on Friday afternoon the sweaters were back. During a briefing on the city's preparations for winter storm "Nemo," Bloomberg swapped his usual dark suits for a bright red knit pullover, setting Twitter abuzz.

"Now it's serious. #Bloomberg is wearing his red #storm sweater," tweeted Steven Shore, one of the legions of New Yorkers who've taken a notice of Hizzoner's fashion choices, even reading meaning into the colors in his outfits.

Reporters, like BuzzFeed's Rosie Gray, also got in on the fun.

"Bloomberg sweater update: red, collared," she tweeted.

Some have taken to anticipating Bloomberg's choices, wondering what he'll wear to his next appearance.

"Right now, Mayor Bloomberg is staring at his closet figuring out which 'press conference snow sweater' to wear tomorrow," tweeted , as the storm drew near.

And some of the sweaters have even developed fan followings.

"Can't wait to see Mayor Bloomberg in his little 'Snow Emergency' outfit. Best one was bright orange sweater," tweeted

Of course, it's not just during emergencies that Bloomberg gravitates towards his sweaters. He donned a blue v-neck during a February 2012 budget speech in honor of the Giants' Super Bowl bid, and frequently tries to match his outfits to the colors of local parades.

Much of the mayor's casual wardrobe also seems to exhibit a certain level of "brightness" even when he's making appearances on Little League opening day or sitting court-side at the Knicks.

Dawn Del Russo, a fashion expert who has served as a stylist for numerous magazines and major television networks, said the colors likely aren't an accident.

"Subconsciously, I think the reason why anyone wears brighter color clothes is to keep up a positive attitude,” she told DNAinfo.com New York.

"Brighter tones tend to uplift spirits and keep people thinking more positively," she said — perfect, for instance, during times of emergency, when the city wants people to stay calm.

She said Bloomberg's choice of the color red on Friday, the ultimate symbol of power, also sent the message that Hizzoner was in charge.

"Maybe he's wearing that to keep people reminded that he's in control of the situation and has things handled," she said.

Bloomberg's office wouldn't comment on his sweater choices.

But, overall, Del Russo described Bloomberg's style as appropriate — both during times of crisis when it's acceptable to be a little bit more casual as well as day-to-day.

“It's overall a little more conservative," she said. "But it goes with the position that he’s in.”