Screen-worthy style: how to get inspired by favorite characters

(Photo by Ahslyn Kittrell)
Putting together a few basics in a new way can make a simple and fun “Gossip Girl” inspired look.

It is the time of year that students always start to seem as if they are in a slump. With Halloween already passed and Thanksgiving seeming like a distant speck on the horizon, the last thing on anyone’s mind is getting dressed in the morning. When the weather starts to change from the gentle breezes of autumn to the harsher temperatures of winter as it has in the past weeks, most of us just want to curl up and watch our favorite movies.

Luckily, this pastime is more productive than it may seem. The things we watch on screen can definitely be turned into inspiration for what to wear, often using things you probably already own. Your favorite characters can have a positive impact even in real life.

While a literal translation of their outfits from movies can seem like a costume, tweaking a few details can make a great outfit. Translating a favorite character’s style into your own is simple and fun. It usually doesn’t require a lot of new purchases — just a little bit of creativity. Here are some examples of looks inspired by favorite movie or TV characters that can inspired by using items from your own closets.

“Moonrise Kingdom”: In this year’s sleeper hit, directed by Wes Anderson, the female protagonist Suzy Bishop has a truly standout style. This tale of first love and growing up is set in 1965 on the fictional New England island of New Penzance. Suzy’s wardrobe reflects both the era the movie takes place in and the area, with both mod and preppy influences showing up in her outfits. Putting together an outfit inspired by Suzy is as easy as donning a pair of knee socks and a beret. If you are feeling bolder, however, 1960s era dresses are often available at thrift and vintage shops for an inexpensive price.

(Photo by Ahslyn Kittrell)
If you are inspired by movies set in past decades, thrift stores are perfect for recreating that vintage look.

“500 Days of Summer”: Zooey Deschanel’s character in this movie has a retro girl’s dream closet. Although the movie is from 2009, we still just cannot get over the timeless style of Summer Finn. Fortunately, Summer’s wardrobe is pretty simple to recreate in everyday life. Through most of the movie, Summer sticks to a simple dress and flats formula, with heavy 1960s and 70s influences. Although the movie revolves around Summer, the same fashion ideas can easily translate into fall. For example, a retro-inspired navy blue dress (complete with red belt) layered over matching navy tights and a short-sleeved red and white striped sweater looks just like something Summer (or Zooey Deschanel herself) would wear into autumn.


For particularly chilly days, you can never go wrong with a cape coat or pea coat. “Gossip Girl”: While not everyone is a fan of the antics of the show, which depicts the dramatic lives of wealthy young adults of the upper East side in New York City, the style of the characters is undeniable. While each of the characters have their own unique style, the fashion standout is clearly Blair Waldorf.

Her antics are usually fairly heartless, but you could never tell with her sweet and preppy wardrobe. The ensembles that Blair wears usually include schoolgirl accents, such as tights, blazers and bow headbands. Her family might have loads of money to spend on clothes, but you won’t have to spend a fortune to replicate her chic style. Incorporating elements like collared shirts, blazers and ballet flats will create a similar aesthetic and you probably already have those things in your closet.

If you want to create a similar look based on your own favorite character, there are some very easy ways to incorporate some cinematic style into your wardrobe. First of all, if you want a look that is inspired by a character, instead of a costume, try to go for elements of the character’s style rather than copying the outfit piece by piece. For example, in the “Moonrise Kingdom” outfit inspired by Suzy, we used pieces just like those that Suzy wears, but in different colors.

The style is that of the character, but the outfit is still personalized. You can also take inspiration from the color palette of a certain character, or a movie itself. For example, Summer of “500 Days of Summer” wears blue throughout most of the movie, so play on that by incorporating navy as the main color in an outfit.

Lastly, it is not important to replicate every exact piece that a character wears. You can develop a personal style (and do so without a movie budget) by thinking creatively about the types of pieces that a character wears rather than an exact replica of one specific outfit.

(Ashlyn Kittrell)
Using items from thrift stores and bargain stores such as Forever 21, Shelby recreates a look inspired by “500 Days of Summer.”

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