Do you prefer “fashion victim” or “ensembly challenged”? – The best outfits in ‘Clueless’

Ugh, as if! It’s safe to say ‘Clueless’, released in 1995, is one of my all time favourite films. Cher (Alicia Silverstone) lives the life I dream of – huge mansion, ultra fancy ipad controlled wardrobe, iconic outfits everyday, Mike from ‘Friends’ (Paul Rudd) as her boyfriend? All things I wish I could have. Sadly our terrible driving is the only thing we have in common (difference is Cher eventually passes her test!), but every time I watch the film I can’t help but fall in love with the 90’s style time and time again. Once I researched the film further I discovered Mona May is the costume designer for ‘Clueless’, also known for her work in ‘Enchanted’ and ‘The Wedding Singer’, and seeing as they’re two more films I adore I understood why I find ‘Clueless’ so aesthetically pleasing throughout. This blog post showcases some of my favourite outfits within the film, and if you don’t agree, well you’re totally buggin’. 

Cher, Dionne (Stacey Dash) and Tai (Brittany Murphy), wear flawless, 90’s preppy-chic outfits scene after scene.

Plaid is definitely the pattern of the film. Cher wears lots of preppy outfits throughout, though ironically she’s a bit ditzy. With her being quite innocent, especially in terms of boys, May said she dressed Cher this way on purpose to highlight the differences between her and Dionne who had more experience with the opposite sex (her boyfriend, Murray Duvall, who I love – ‘street slang is an increasingly valid form of expression. Most of the feminine pronouns do have mocking, but not necessarily in misogynistic undertones’ makes me laugh every time!), and this is why Dionne’s skirts are always a little shorter. However May made sure they girls dressed somewhat age appropriate, ‘I wanted the movie to have a fresh innocence … not, ‘Hi, I’m 15 and I’m in five-inch heels and here are my breasts.’ I find that repulsive.’

In an interview May also once said the sets were made to be a bland background to help the colours and patterns stand out, ‘Everything the girls wear pops out and doesn’t clash with the things behind, so it was like a clean canvas for us’.

When asked what her favourite outfits were May answered ‘The iconic yellow suit, of course. I love her dresses, I love her little shift dresses, these empire waists, the cap sleeves. I love all of the timelessness—to me it’s just forever.’

clueless - instyle5

The yellow suit is Dolce & Gabbana, Cher also mentions Alaïa and Calvin Klein, which really helps reference the fashion world that Cher lives in. I must give them snaps for their courageous fashion efforts, the film is constantly like a fashion photo shoot, something you could see in Vogue in the 90’s (and has been recreated in fashion magazines ever since). The ‘Clueless’ influence has spread to the streets in recent years as well, layering t-shirts and straps is a trend I see in nightclubs every time I go out. ‘Clueless’ is iconic from start to end, and if you’ve never seen it I urge you to for Cher’s one liners alone – the fashion is, like totally, just a bonus!

Until next time,

Beth x

Images sourced from Vogue, InStyle, SplinterNews and DazedDigital

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