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What would summer be without indulging in bold colors, showing some skin and going a little extra? If you’re hoping to glam up your wardrobe in a quirky, 90s-inflected direction, look no further than the unforgettable fashion muses of Romy and Michele from the 1997 comedy Romy and Michele’s High School Reunion. Glamorous, carefree and lovably dim-witted, the two BFFs reinvent themselves as black-suited businesswomen for their high school reunion – only to revert to their candy-colored aesthetic (and true selves) by the film’s end.
Strutting around on chunky heels, fruit jewelry and skintight lamé dresses, our two heroines prove that dialing it up doesn’t mean giving up on your style cred. Sick of normcore, austere palettes and sleek uptown looks? Read on for all the tips and tricks on how to inject some adrenaline into your summer wardrobe!
Take a hint from our happy-go-lucky duo and banish your all-black ensembles to the back of the closet! A hot summer calls for body-flattering pieces in candy colors and juicy neons. If you’re feeling flirtatious, go for a tennis skirt in buttercup yellow or light azure that’s perfect for showing off tanned legs. For an outfit that’s sexy yet classy, this yellow halter-neck dress channeling sunny vibes will fit the bill. The sartorially adventurous, meanwhile, can consider hot pink biker shorts to make workouts less of a chore, or a patchwork tank juxtaposing candy-colored panels against punkish contrast seams.
Quirky prints are a surefire way to elevate an outfit, as evidenced by our two heroines who expertly mix them to vibrant effect. Find the perfect blouse to go with your activity of the day, whether that’s a girlish cherry print for a fruit-picking sesh, a zany geometric design for calculus class, or a psychedelic patterned top for a bold, in-your-face date outfit. To make a head-turning entrance, invest in statement pieces such as this cute but tough combo in sassy florals, which ups the drama while still looking easy-breezy.
Raid Romy and Michele’s jewelry box for cute and jazzy accoutrements to evergreen golden necklaces and grandma’s pearls! The most iconic of these is undoubtedly Michele’s cherry earrings and necklace set, which steals the spotlight in a movie crammed full of arresting costume jewelry, including daisy-shaped resin earrings and ultra-wide rhinestone chokers. Cop the duo’s optimistic energy by adding fruit and candy-inspired pieces to the mix before sealing the deal with heart-shaped sunnies. Who needs diamonds when you can adorn your lobes with replicas of dragon fruit slices or dreamily colored gummies?
The power suit trend is still going strong, but it’s always good to temper those bossbabe vibes with a dose of quirkiness. Slouchy cuts and unexpected colors work well, as do sultry details like plunging necklines and provocative hemlines. If it’s your dream to live out the Romy and Michele fantasy and order a “Businesswoman Special” in a suit and stilettos, then go for this 2021 update that skims the 80s campiness from the ensemble. For a girlish riff on the trend, a blazer dress in Barbie pink is a cute alternative. For the perfect blend of alpha energy and hipster vibes, consider pinstriped shorts or an asymmetrical mini to hit the sweet spot between gravitas and flirtatiousness.
The duo’s matching lamé dresses featured in the movie’s famous dance scene says it all. Trimmed with feathers, rendered in candy colors and worn with chunky, 70s-style heels, the looks are both a celebration of Romy and Michele’s party girl energy and a testament to their iconic BFF camaraderie. In homage to these classic outfits, which sit comfortably between figure skating costume, prom dress and club wear, I’ve selected pieces that channel the glitzy energy: a cropped satin camisole, a rhinestone choker, strappy PVC sandals with clear heels and a metallic shoulder bag adorned with an acrylic chain.
The film’s throwback scenes of teenage Romy and Michele also offer bold and retro outfit inspiration! They went through a grungy (if equally maximalist) phase, with less-than-perfect dye jobs to match. Take a nostalgic dive by indulging in at least one of the following for a day: a black dress in an asymmetrical cut, a mesh bustier top, combat boots, or, if you’re attention-shy, neo-goth accessories.
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