When TV and fashion mix – 9 fashion forward shows of the last few decades

Fashion can be many things. Outrageous, fun and interesting (think Alexander McQueen or Vivienne Westwood). Or it can be down right stupid (think pin size models with lollipop heads). But no matter what you might think of fashion – whether you live by the latest trends or could not care less what is fashionable at the moment – it is a billion dollar industry. It is no wonder many designers and fashion houses are joined at the hip with some of our favorite TV shows. So lets take the look at some of the more fashion forward TV shows that made for some interesting fashion choices over the years.

Sex and the City – the be-all-and-end-all of fashion forward shows. Thanks to Patricia Fields and her unique vision and aesthetics each of the characters made her own fashion statement. And we all gobbed it up even though rare are the few that can afford those shoes, let alone handbags or all of those lovely clothes. Given some of the stuff Carrie wore looked plain ridiculous and would make any normal woman look like a twit but you do have to admire their gall and sass.



Ugly Betty – oh bless our lovely Betty some of her outfits make my eyes water, they are so colorful. And I do adore some of her skirts. Then there is the ever so polished Wilhelmina, fashion victim Amanda, the ever dapper Marc, the list goes on and on. Again Patricia Fields is the driving force behind many of the outfits and I am not one bit surprised Ugly Betty is so fashion forward and bang on trend.



Mad Men – yes I am aware that Mad Men is quite good. But this is one show that has brought back the good old fashioned glamor with men in dapper suits and curvy women with petticoats and not a hair out of place. And how can you not covet some (or all) of the dresses you see on the show? Costumes for Mad Men are designed by Katherine Jane Bryant (who also worked on Deadwood).



Gossip Girl – now I have to be honest and admit I have never ever watched one episode of Gossip Girl. But if even I am aware who are Blake Lively and Leighton Meester or that I do know about that Marc Jacobs/Alice + Olivia dress or that Anna Sui has a line at Target inspired by Gossip Girl – well you don’t have to be a rocket scientist to understand that the show is obviously fashion relevant (too bad I never really got into the plot). The costume designer for Gossip girl is Eric Daman (who also worked on Sex and The City).



Will and Grace – Am I the only one who actually thought Grace’s outfits were bang on trend? Although I don’t know at what Karen scoffed more – Grace’s fashion choices or her lack of breasts. But I always really liked what she wore. And Will and Jack were nothing to sneer at either. The style guru behind Will and Grace was Lori Eskowitz who went on and worked on Samantha Who?, ‘Till Death and The New Adventures of Old Christine.



Veronica Mars – now don’t get me wrong I did love Veronica Mars’ story line far more then I loved the clothes. But I did covet a good few jeans, hoodies and t-shirts from her collection. I guess it was only to be expected since her style is most similar to my own (although in my defense I am trying to incorporate more skirts and dresses in my wardrobe of late). Be as it may the costume designer for Veronica Mars was Salvador Perez Jr (who went on to work Moonlight, Party Down and Castle) and Jennifer L. Soulages (who also worked on X Files and the latest Hillary Swank movie Amelia).



Beverly Hills 90210 – before you start laughing at me for being slightly insane I do have to make it clear – I am not talking about the latest CW offering 90210 but the original series (although if someone told me all those years ago I would be talking about Beverly Hills 90210 as the original series… well it does make me feel horribly old and slightly silly). But I digress. At the time Beverly Hills 90210 was fashion forward. We all wanted to own either Kelly’s or Brenda’s clothes (I don’t think anyone wanted Donna Martin’s clothes though). And I think in a way it introduced that relaxed California style to the world. Although I could never understand why one person would wear short sleeves while second one was in a jacket. Men of Beverly Hills 90210 were – well the shirts were loud, their bangs were blow dried with brush, the least we say about that the better. Costume designers on Beverly Hills 90210 Molly Harris Campbell (who worked on Charmed and X Files), Jane Trapnell, Diane Kennedy (Sabrina The Teenage Witch) and Cathryn Wagner (Lizzie McGuire).



Dynasty – do not judge – I am child of the 80s. And at the time Dynasty was fashion forward. The hairs were huge, the shoulder pads were even bigger and sequins ruled. But that was the style at the time. The person responsible for Alexis’ power suits and Krystle’s sequined dresses was Nolan Miller (who also worked on Love Boat, Hart to Hart, Charlie’s Angels and Miss America’s pageant – now why does that last one does not surprise me?)



Friends – how can I leave out the show that gave us “the Rachel”? Whether you liked Friends or thought they were just.not.funny. well the fashion rocked. Again each of the characters had their own distinctive style and at one time or another I wished I had access to that particular set and their closet. The stylist behind the looks was Debra McGuire (who also worked on Heroes, The Starter Wife and Judging Amy).


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5 thoughts on “When TV and fashion mix – 9 fashion forward shows of the last few decades

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