F/W Wardrobes Inspired By Horror Movie Aesthetics

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Halloween season is upon us, which means it’s time for a spookathon! Even if horror films aren’t normally part of your Netflix queue, horror movie aesthetics can provide plenty of inspo for F/W looks. Packed with everything from demon dolls to black cats to sinister doppelgangers, the best horror cinema inspires not just screams, but also killer wardrobes.

Paying homage to four modern horror films − from the straightforward thrills of Annabelle to the plot twists-filled pleasures of Us − here are four ensembles perfect for showcasing your macabre side without sacrificing wearability.

Horror fans,  get ready for some serious chills!

1. Annabelle – Savage Victoriana

 
 
 
 
 
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A post shared by Annabelle Comes Home (@annabellemovie)

Part of The Conjuring cinematic universe, the Annabelle series revolves around a demon doll possessed by an evil spirit, leaving a blood-soaked trail in its wake. A million miles away from your childhood Barbies and unlike the typical serial killers you see on screen, the retro-tinged Annabelle combines an evil grin with an arsenal of supernatural powers, from mind control to telekinesis. Her costume, which consists of a high-neck white satin gown radiating Victoriana vibes, would be sweet if not for certain disturbing details, like an oversized rosette at the waist and blood-red piping along the bust.

To stay true to the gothic origins of Annabelle’s costume but tone down the eeriness and excess, I decided to keep the red-and-white palette while taking the outfit in a more sophisticated direction. A cropped satin blouse in cream and an easy-breezy accordion skirt in winter-ready material draw out the inherent romanticism in Annabelle’s costume. Into this mix, I threw red chunky Mary Janes and a velvet scrunchie for an outfit that’s darkly romantic or deliciously creepy, depending on your take.

2. Us – Sinister Workwear

Some would argue that in the history of horror cinema and movie monsters, nothing can elicit fear more than menacing doppelgangers. They look like us, dress like us and seem to hurt like us, but they’re most definitely not us… or are they? In Us, the 2019 psychological horror movie, the tight-knit Wilson family are confronted with bizarre versions of themselves, malevolent doppelgangers whose only goal is to supplant their counterparts. Dressed in bright red jumpsuits that combine institutional uniform vibes with a statement-making silhouette, the “other family” slowly reveals that the terror actually lies within.

For your F/W wardrobe, here’s an outfit that nods to Us’s iconic red jumpsuit and distinctive red-and-white palette without veering into cosplay. For a daily ensemble with edge, I chose another workwear favorite − denim dungarees − to layer over a chunky red sweater for bold contrast. Platform sneakers deepen those street-style vibes, and a pleated crossbody bag in white finishes the look on a feminine note.

3. Detention – The Schoolgirl Silhouette

Based on the video game of the same name, the 2019 film Detention gives the horror genre a politically charged twist. Set in 1960s Taiwan during the White Terror period, the story focuses on Fang Ray-shin, a doe-eyed schoolgirl searching for her missing teachers and classmates after waking up in an abandoned campus filled with atrocities. Navigating an increasingly dangerous landscape, Fang cuts a resolute figure in her schoolgirl uniform of a starched white shirt and belted, navy blue A-line skirt as she struggles to piece together her memories − and the truth.

For an outfit that does justice to Fang’s prim, proper schoolgirl silhouette as well as the grungy visual language and intricate set design of the film, I paired this whimsical white shirt with a utilitarian-looking cargo skirt complete with straps and metal loops. Pulling the ensemble together are a checked knit vest embellished with gold-tone buttons and square-toe Oxfords, both of which keep things appropriately austere while adding extra edge.

4. Jennifer’s Body – Y2K Classics with Edge

 

 

The 2009 cult classic Jennifer’s Body combines traditional horror film tropes with elements of high-school comedy and a healthy dose of feminism. A man-eater with a voracious appetite, the titular Jennifer searches for prey amongst the school corridors while dressed in Y2K essentials that hit the nail between vampy and girl next door. Her best outfits are casual yet high-octane − think heart-print sweaters with plunging necklines, mini skirts complemented with spiderweb-patterned fishnet tights and, in the final scenes, a monochrome prom dress giving off 80s vibes. Looking incredible even amidst a rising body count and moments of stunning horror, Jennifer is infectious and unstoppable.

Take a page from Jennifer’s stylebook and turn the horror aesthetic on its head with this outfit combining Y2K sass with queen bee chic! Say no to preppy argyle sweaters, and opt for this cropped, candy-colored pointelle version featuring a wavy pattern. Pair it with high-waist jeans featuring heart prints over both knees before subverting the girliness with a padded corduroy jacket. For an extra dose of tough girl vibes, complete the outfit with faux leather ankle boots in black.

 

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