Mel and Joey Schwanke are truly cut from the same cloth. And it was on display Friday when the couple sat down to talk about their matching outfits with TODAY’s Al Roker and Tamron Hall.
As TODAY.com previously reported, Mel, 86, and Joey Schwanke, 81, of Fremont, Neb., have been happily married for 64 years, and they credit their longevity to their 146 custom-made matching outfits.
The couple did not disappoint in their appearance on TODAY: Joey wore a plum floral dress to complement Mel’s matching tie of the same fabric. On display around them were a few examples of their collection, including a green satin dress with matching tie.
Joey said, “It’s kind of fun doing it. People expect it now, so you can’t get away without it.” Her husband Mel added that at church on Sunday mornings “people check us out to make sure we match.”
The tradition began when the couple’s dressmaker of 48 years used some extra fabric to make Mel a tie, after Joey stopped wearing belts because Mel suggested that they didn’t flatter her figure. Mel called the decision to start matching a “mutual idea. We work things out very, very carefully.”
The couple said that picking out the outfits every morning is a cooperative affair, with Joey sometimes nixing options if a dress is unsuitable for the weather, or if “somebody saw us in that yesterday, we can’t wear that again today.” The pair say the daily cooperation has helped their marriage, and Joey swears by cooperation and mutual respect as the secret to long-term bliss.
Mel made sure to appear on the show with his signature fresh red carnation, poised perfectly in his suit pocket. He never starts a day without it.
TODAY.com contributor Jillian Eugenios hopes Mel and Joey have started a trend.
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