Where's Palin's $150G Wardrobe? RNC Doesn't Say

Where is Sarah Palin's wardrobe? That's the $150,000 question.

The high-priced clothing the Republican National Committee bought for the Alaska governor's vice presidential run late last summer was donated to charity, as far as her spokeswoman knows. 

"To my knowledge, the RNC donated the clothes, and in a quiet and respectful manner," Palin's spokeswoman, Meg Stapleton, told FOXNews.com in an e-mail Tuesday.

But a source close to the clothing discussion told FOXNews.com last Wednesday that the RNC had not donated the clothes and that the wardrobe has remained at the RNC since Nov. 7, when it was returned.

The RNC will not confirm whether it donated the various clothing and accessories it purchased for Palin at the start of her vice presidential run. And phone calls by FOXNews.com to local Washington charities that would accept women's clothing yielded no information. 

RNC spokesman Alex Conant said three months ago that Palin had returned the wardrobe and that the clothing would be dispersed to charitable organizations.

But after being questioned over the last two weeks about their whereabouts, Conant wouldn't say where the wardrobe may be. 

"I have nothing to add to that," Conant told FOXNews.com repeatedly when asked where the clothes have gone.

The RNC has denied rumors that the clothes are still sitting in trash bags at its Washington headquarters.

"We have no information on them," said Patrick Royal, another RNC spokesman. 

But Stapleton said the RNC had told her where the clothing had gone, but she wasn't going to share the names out of respect for the charities, which could conceivably sell them to earn money for their operations and causes.

"I did ask for the names of some of the charities," Stapleton said. "We were quite pleased with the RNC's choices. I will not share the names of those charities, as that quiet and respectful manner to which I referred protects us from members of the media invading those charities in search of the clothes."

Last month, a girl claiming to be Palin's niece sold a pair of the governor's $100 red Naughty Monkey high heels for $2,025 to an anonymous bidder on eBay. The size 7 1/2 shoes -- sported by Palin during the campaign -- were auctioned off along with two autographed pictures of the governor wearing them. 

"I got the shoes from aunt Sarah after mentioning that I liked them," she wrote on eBay's Web site. "They don't fit to well, so I decided to let someone else enjoy them."

The RNC spent about $180,000 for various clothes, hair styling and accessories for Palin and her family during the presidential campaign, Federal Election Commission records show.

The bulk of that money -- close to $150,000 -- was spent in early September on clothes for the vice presidential candidate and her family at various high-end department stores like Neiman Marcus in Minneapolis and Saks Fifth Avenue in St. Louis.

The purchases included a beige Valentino jacket -- which reportedly cost $2,500 -- several designer suits and a Louis Vuitton bag that was toted by Palin's 7-year-old daughter Piper.

Click here to see photos. 

Palin and the RNC were criticized for the lavish purchases, which critics said undercut the governor's image as a small-town "hockey mom" and clashed with the candidate's folksy demeanor and emphasis on the working class as she campaigned alongside "Joe the Plumber." 

The cost of Palin's attire was more than three times the mean annual wage of a U.S. plumber in 2007 -- $47,350, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. And the average American household spent $1,874 on clothes in 2006, the bureau reports.

The hefty price tag angered Republican donors who were displeased that party contributions were being spent for clothing -- especially as GOP nominee John McCain was being outspent by Barack Obama in several key swing states.

But the McCain campaign dismissed criticism of Palin's clothing, saying it was an attempt by critics to distract voters from campaign issues. Supporters also charged that the media's fixation on Palin's wardrobe was sexist.

"With all of the important issues facing the country right now, it's remarkable that we're spending time talking about pants suits and blouses," former Palin spokeswoman Tracey Schmitt said on Oct. 22. "It was always the intent that the clothing go to a charitable purpose after the campaign."

On Tuesday, Stapleton added that "the media has portrayed this as a personal Palin story. It is not. The clothes were accessories to a campaign just like the lighting and the stage. This is an RNC issue." 

Cristina Corbin is a Fox News reporter based in New York. Follow her on Twitter @CristinaCorbin.