Heads Up, Gen X: Heathers Style Is Back for 2021
To say the opening scene of the 1989 dark comedy Heathers contributed to my love of fashion would be the understatement of the year. In that scene, the three most popular girls at an Ohio high school (all named Heather, naturally) knock croquet balls at Veronica's (Winona Ryder's) head, which rests on the lawn as if it were on a platter, her body buried under the grass. Their mean-girl uniform — wide-shouldered blazers with Bermuda shorts, voluminous perms with even puffier scrunchies, and prissy little socks worn with prissy little flats — is iconic. While the film is a cult classic, the outfits and the understanding of how much power clothing can have are what struck me.
And isn't that exactly what we need right now? Clothes that make you a little powerful? We're on the brink of reemerging into the world, and showing off a little and taking up some extra space feels irresistible. Designers were feeling it too for pre-fall collections, with brands like Valentino, Balmain, and Chanel putting their own spin on prim '80s fashion. Shoulder pads, vivid colors, brooches, and big hair after a year spent in loungewear? In the words of that infamous clique, "It'll be very."
Statement-making monochrome is the gateway drug to full-on Heathers dressing. See the red suit-and-socks look above, or this periwinkle combination as inspiration.
When it comes to girly pink and pearl accents, more is more.
When in doubt, match your dress to the furniture.
Preppy polo collars give a snappy update to your standard sweater.
Graphic knits take on a whole new meaning this season with ultra-WASPy themes (like pineapples). Embrace the classic kitsch and go all in with a collared shirt and structured shorts in a coordinating color.
Girl gang dressing goes extreme in matching plaids and giant bows.
Twinsets get a cool update in matching knit tops and bottoms.
Hair: Shinya Nakagawa for Artlist. Makeup: Allie Smith for Bridge Artists. Manicure: Yukie Miyakawa for See Management. Model: Aira Ferreira for Supreme Management. Parts model: Claire VanBeber.
For more stories like this, pick up the June 2021 issue of InStyle, available on newsstands, on Amazon, and for digital download May 21st.