1. The Fresh Prince of Bel Air
There really is just so much to work with here.
Every hipster with a passion for ironic colored animal print owes Will Smith an Instagram of a thank-you note at the very least. What he and his castmates did for modern ironic dressing has got to be one of the most valuable, marketable aesthetics in the entire history of television at this point.
2. Saved by the Bell
Can we talk about Kelly Kapaowski? Madewell would charge $250 for this outfit today.
In fact, girls would pay $220 for all the outfits the guys wore on that show too. Slater’s western-style belts and Skeeter’s high-waisted pants are just the kind of “I try” clothes fashionable people love.
Just two years ago the New York Times credited Elaine Benes with pioneering the coolest fashion trends of the season: “‘Seinfeld’ was decidedly anti-fashion. But now, if you happen upon an old episode, Elaine just looks cool — and of-the-moment,” the paper declared. (Translation: if you were anyone at nightclub on a weeknight in downtown New York in August of 2010, you were dressing like Elaine Benes.) Opening Ceremony would totally stock an ironic Elaine line now.
4. Clarissa Explains It All
A pioneer of the mixed prints trend dominating the pages of Vogue. (But unlike Vogue Clarissa does it in a way we can all relate to.)
5. Hey Dude
“Hey Dude” embodied a Western camp counselor chic that is really missing from fashion these days.
Pictured left: hipsters at a “Hey Dude” 90s party.
6. Absolutely Fabulous
American Apparel can’t have a monopoly of the lamé market, now.
Photoshop Rihanna’s head above those pink feathered shoulders and you’d have a very organic outfit.
How to hike the swimwear above the hips without being obnoxious about it.
All these prints look like the stretchy textbook covers I used in grade school.
Looking wet/disheveled/greasy is big business. Think of the lengths we go to to get beachy hair, dewy skin, and tans. There is certainly a beauty line in this show to go with a clingy tank top line.
11. The Real World (First Season)
This photo in itself could be a Levi’s 501s ad. Julie’s Canadian tuxedo could be sold as a set.
12. Family Ties
Mallary Keaton? Way ahead of her time.
For one, the statement collars, which are now somewhat commonly sold separately from shirts they’re such a trendy trend.
14. The Wonder Years
A preppy clothing line like Ben Sherman could have totally cashed in on the classic American, slightly nerdy looks that Kevin, Winnie, and Paul wore. There’s something endearing about looking like your mom still picks out your clothes at Sears.
Blossom was always too goofy to look like she was trying too hard, even though her kooky grandma outfits looked laboriously complicated. Artsy teenage girls without a musty attic to raid would have begged for some of the crazy vests and hats she wore on this show.
17. Soul Train
“Soul Train” totally could have had a line of high-waisted bell-bottoms for any jeans company. People used to shake their hips so easily in these pants.
18. Married with Children
Peg Bundy had to have been an influence on Jeremy Scott at some point.
Kelly Bundy would have had a special line for NastyGal, just in time for music festival season.
19. In Living Color
The Wayans brothers are wearing the exact kind of neon spandex outfits that drunk frat guys love to wear at Coachella.
The Fly Girls line would have used up much of the world’s supply of crushed velvet. (Disappointingly, J. Lo has not incorporated it in any significant way into her modern stage jumpsuits.)
20. Sex and the City
Amazingly this was not its own line, though stylist Patricia Field does have the most fabulous store that sells disco balls and this peacock necklace.
You could release an SATC line now at H&M and women would take days off work to camp out overnight for it.
21. Dawson’s Creek
I can see it now: Dawson for Dockers. Also, Delia’s could do a line of Joey-Potter-inspired comfy clothing for every girl’s short-lived tomboy phase.
22. Gilmore Girls
This show really should have inspired a whole spate of autumnal, earthen-toned furniture for Pottery Barn.
Or perhaps J. Crew could do an entire winter hat line based on Rory’s golf cap.
23. That ’70s Show
Many girls would die for a Jackie x Karen Walker resort wear line involving jumpsuits and platforms.
And let’s not discount the significance of the men’s clothes, in the face of Rachel’s hair.
Just as much potential for clothing line inspiration as everything above.
A lot of the clothes are ugly, sure, but in a knowing way, with that nonsensical flavor true style is really all about.