Ukraine does not know the pleasure of having a real first lady, not to mention the glamorous ones like Jacqueline Kennedy or Michelle Obama.
President Viktor Yanukovich’s wife, Lyudmila, rarely makes public appearances. He lives in Donetsk and does not participate in the official life of the country, depriving the Ukrainians of the joy of looking and discussing the priorities, customs, manners and tastes of the first lady.
Most Ukrainian politicians follow the president’s path of keeping wives in the background. This makes election day the only time people can see many politicians accompanied by their wives.
The leaders of almost all the parties that were elected to parliament this time went to the polling station with their spouses, as did at least one former president, Leonid Kuchma. Regardless of how their husbands’ political plans differed, all wives had something in common: an unfortunate choice of clothes.
The clothes of the election day of the black dominations completely dominate as if everyone had something to cry about.
It is quite unlikely that the wife of opposition leader Arseniy Yatseniuk, Terezia, 42, and Kuchma’s wife, Lyudmila, 72, have agreed on what to wear. But both chose similar black trench coats with light patterned scarves underneath. Lyudmila Kuchma, just like her retired husband, had no political function that day except to exercise her right to vote as a citizen.
Unlike her, Terezia Yatseniuk came to vote and support her husband’s ambitions with an adequate look. Her sombre appearance is even more striking, as she had previously been seen wearing white, blue and purple clothes.
Terezia Yatseniuk, wife of the leader of the united opposition Arseniy Yatseniuk.
Anna Turchynova, 42, wife of the former deputy prime minister and current opposition leader Oleksandr Turchynov, wore a black coat and a sad look, both unflattering. She was previously photographed in white, beige and pink clothes. One even shows Turchynova in a shirt with her husband’s photo on it. Wouldn’t it have been nice to wear it on election day?
Turchynova tried to improve this distressing aspect with a bag. But honestly, Christian Dior’s Lady Dior wasn’t the best choice. Wear a recognizable $ 2,000 bag as you help your husband earn public sympathy in a troubled country – well, that’s not a good strategy.
Anna Turchynova, wife of Oleksandr Turchynov.
Ironically enough, the wives of the nationalist leader Svoboda Oleg Tiahnybok, the head of the Party of Regions and Prime Minister Mykola Azarov and the new political star Vitali Klitschko wore black and red.
Klitschko’s wife, Natalia, 38, a former model, was the liveliest, but she didn’t avoid the curse of black. The formal trousers, the high collar and a coat with red neck decorations were the choice of this brunette. His discrepancy with Klitschko, who wore a light gray jacket and a white shirt, was striking.
Natalia Klitschko, wife of opposition leader Vitali Klitschko
Olga Tiahnybok, 43, added a black and red shawl to her … yes, black coat. And Lyudmyla Azarova, 66, combined her coat with a black and red hat and an unmatched red bag.
Olga Tiahnybok, wife of Oleh Tiahnybok
Azarova’s diabolical appearance, Turchynova’s luxury accessories and Klitschko’s choice of colors are his business, but not in political shows like the one on October 28, when their styles can potentially help or damage the images of their husbands.
Lyudmyla Azarova is located next to her husband, Prime Minister Mykola Azarov, in a polling station in Kiev on October 28th.
It may be sexism, but political women (including former U.S. first lady Hillary Clinton among them) and male politicians’ wives are heavily scrutinized in the West, including their choice of clothes.
It now appears that regardless of who will succeed in the 2015 presidential election, there is little chance that Ukraine will have her Jackie Kennedy unless a miracle occurs in the next three years.
Kyiv Post staff writer Olga Rudenko can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.