The show has been given a new life thanks to a whole new generation discovering it on Netflix. If you choose to rewatch an episode, though now you’ll have to go to HBO Max to do it, you’ll find that the outfits are just as in today as they ever were.
I think the reason why their style still works today is because they wore these great outfits that were all things normal women could wear and not feel out of place in. The fancy fashion trend term for this is normcore. (If you find learning about this kind of thing interesting, Alexa Chung explains it in this video for British Vogue.) But that normcore look was intentional. One of the creators of the show, Marta Kauffman, wanted the clothes they wore to be a “nod to realism.”
Normcore is a fashion style based on clothes and styles real people would wear in daily life.
While Rachel, Phoebe, and Monica all had their own distinct style, the clothes they wore will fit perfectly with the clothing you most likely already own, which is great because who likes to buy something and find out they have nothing to wear it with? If you’re worried about making some of these outfits warm enough, read this. Now, on to the fall fashion inspiration you need.
The One Where Schoolgirl Plaid Was Cool
If anyone could make schoolgirl plaid look like it belonged outside a private school, it’s Rachel Green. Actually, Rachel often incorporates plaid into her outfits whether it was a skirt or pants. Get yourself a plaid skirt and tights, and pretty much any combination of sweaters, jackets, long-sleeved shirts, and scarves will do the trick.
The One Where Layering Was the Trick
All the ladies use this little fashion trick a lot. It’s great because it helps your clothing transition between seasons and you still look cute. Turtlenecks are a perfect basic to have in your closet. It's another way to extend parts of your summer wardrobe into winter and fall!
The One Where Prints Were a Fun Way To Add Color
Phoebe’s looks are definitely known for being more bohemian and eclectic. She often wears vintage dresses that have fun colors and prints. Corduroy pants or jeans can pair with a printed top for fall.
If uptown chic is more your style, follow Rachel's example. Animal print is always in for fall, whether it's a skirt, chic boots, or as Rachel Green so elegantly rocks it, a vest.
The One That Had the Cool Girl Jacket You Need to Buy
Rachel is the queen of statement jackets. A lot of women make the mistake of buying cheaper clothing because it’s sometimes harder to swallow the price for a quality item. But with coats, it's usually worth it to splurge. You'll definitely get several years of wear out of it, and it will be the main item you'll be wearing for fall and winter.
Need more proof that the Friends characters had the cool-girl jacket thing down? Enter Phoebe. Corduroy is definitely a fall texture, so it’s a really great choice. If green isn’t your thing, try a burgundy or brown. Both are warm neutrals that will pair elegantly with anything else in your cold weather wardrobe.
The One Where a Button-Down Shirt Was the Perfect Relaxed Fall Basic
There’s just something so easy about throwing on a button-down shirt and calling it good. Plus, I’ll give you a hint: the one Rachel’s wearing could very possibly have been from the men’s section since it’s so oversized anyway. And oftentimes men’s clothing is cheaper! But as my dad exclaimed, “No! The buttons will be on the wrong side.” So take that for what it’s worth.
The One Where The Sweater/Mini Skirt Combo Won The Day
There's nothing simpler than a flirty mini skirt with a good sweater. Pair it with high socks or tights to keep warm. Pick something super simple, like the plain black or something with a fun print (animal print or plaid anybody?) It's perfect for a fall date night or day at the pumpkin patch.
The One Where Superheroes Were the “In” Halloween Costume
Since fall tends to involve a need for a costume party, I thought I’d throw this in as a bonus idea. If you’re not going as someone from Friends, you can always take a page from their book and go as Catwoman or Supergirl.
I’m more in love with Friends fashion than ever before after writing this. I think I may also need to go watch another episode or two (or seven). Be smart when you shop, and with a little thought, you can create a wardrobe that’s as chic, wearable, and versatile. Before you know it, your wardrobe will be a ‘90s dream.