Fashion in Film: Rachel from Friends
Freya Insoll celebrates quintessential 90’s fashion embodied in Friends character Rachel Green
Love it or hate it, Friends was undeniably the TV pinnacle of 90’s fashion; from the silky slips to the classic boyfriend jeans, the show fills a certain fashion hole that is yet to be matched by today’s TV offerings. With the recent resurgence in 90’s fashion, it would be criminal not to draw inspiration from the most iconic outfits of the Friends cast – and particularly those of the ultimate 90’s fashion and beauty icon, Rachel Green.
Rachel was responsible for influencing the haircuts of a generation, the ‘Rachel’ haircut was created by hairstylist Chris McMillan in 1995 and first debuted in the episode “The One with the Evil Orthodontist.” It was the ultimate shaggy layered bob, effortless and bouncy, although probably less perfectly coiffed without the help of Jennifer Aniston’s on hand stylists. It has continued to demonstrate its cultural impact to this day, with Bella Hadid debuting her so called ‘Rachel 2.0’ to the world last year, almost 25 years since the style made its first appearance. While the ‘Rachel’ bob may be the most famously remembered of the Friends haircuts, it would be amiss to ignore Rachel’s later face framing layered long hair, a style I lust after daily.
Not only did Rachel Green possess an unmatched influence in the world of hair and beauty, she also possessed a to-die-for wardrobe of gingham mini dresses and baggy sweatpants. The most recognisable of her looks is likely the tartan miniskirt/white roll neck combo – chic yet comfy, an off-duty look that would be as easily wearable today as it was 20+ years ago. In my eyes the most covetable of her clothes are the silky, long slips – spaghetti straps, layered over a t-shirt, paired with a kitten heel, the silky slips can do no wrong. When lounging around at home with Monica, or playing basketball with the boys, Rachel would don a baggy pair of sweatpants and a cropped vest – sportswear done right.
Rachel also knew how to put together her corporate looks; her collection of shirts, often knotted at the waist, is one any graduate student would benefit from when entering the world of work. Whether she’s in an oversized blue pinstripe, or a slim fit white blouse, Rachel nails office chic, giving us all a lesson in sartorial style. While she may be a fictional fashion icon, Rachel’s success in the fashion world can provide inspiration for any prospective entrant to the fashion industry. Thanks to her style know how, Rachel progressed from junior buyer at Bloomingdale’s, to fashion executive at Ralph Lauren, to the infamous yet unnamed position with Louis Vuitton in Paris (spoiler, she chooses Ross over Louis).
So, while Rachel’s love life may have been a bit on-again, off-again, her fashion influence has been unwaveringly steadfast. For anyone hoping to mimic her casual yet cool 90’s style, you may have to take a trip to the charity shops – a haven of 90’s nostalgia, and noughties horrors.
Header video: All The Best ’90s Fashion Moments From Friends on Netflix UK & Ireland https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3Kjr_5iKyao