In a world where all anyone seems to be doing is waiting for the next episode of their favourite TV show, we at SUBCULTURED decided to check out how popular TV shows through the ages have influenced fashion. If you need some inspiration in the form of a blast from the past, this is the place to look!

One Tree Hill

One Tree Hill was known not only for its frequent dramas and fleeting romances, but for the role that fashion played within it. Brooke Davis, one of the main characters, becomes a fashion designer for clothing line ‘Clothes over Bros’ (eternal words to live by) and prior to this kept a chic wardrobe at all times. All of the characters embody noughties fashion whether it was Peyton Sawyer’s rock and roll statement leather jacket and artistic accessories, or Hayley’s casual comfort; there was something to inspire style for everyone.

Gossip Girl

When Gossip Girl first aired in 2007 one of the first things to be praised about the show was the beautiful wardrobe crafted by Eric Daman. The stylish Upper East Side teenagers were an aspiration its audience were unlikely to achieve after all, we can’t all have a trust fund to support our shopping addiction! But Blair Waldorf’s cute headbands or Serena Van Der Woodsen’s layered casual look with statement accessorises brought the noughties to new fashionable heights. Whether you loved Chuck Bass’ scarves or Jenny Humphrey’s dark grungey look, Gossip Girl taught us that even when your life is nothing but endless drama, there’s no reason not to look fabulous.


The 90’s remain an era of fashion that we just can’t stop coming back to; from the “Rachel” haircut to all the wild and wacky outfits that spanned the series, Friends has hugely impacted fashion. Preppy plaid skirts with knee socks or denim on denim; Rachel Green continues to be a style icon to this day. Joey Tribianni’s satchel changed the game for the ‘man bag’ or Phoebe Buffay’s effortless boho chic set the 90’s up to be a generation of fashion revolution.

Pretty Little Liars

Pretty Little Liars took to our screens in 2010 and brought with it jewel toned dresses and endless accessories. While the plot of the show keeps us guessing to this day, there was no mystery as to whether the girls would be able to pull it out the bag week after week with their effortless style. All of the girls had their own individual look and regardless of whether it was Hanna’s chic girlie girl outfits or Spencer’s confident casual blazers that called to you, there is no shortage of style inspiration on the set of PLL.


When Glee first aired a generation of teenagers were given a multitude of new style icons to worship and the beauty of the wardrobe on Glee’s set was that there was something for just about everyone. Rachel Berry’s classic retro look never failed to surprise, often with a conservative edge, Rachel’s look was perfect for high school teens. And it wasn’t just the girls who kept their wardrobe up to trend at all times, Kurt and Blaine were arguably the two most fashionable members of the cast. Kurt kept it creative, putting together surprising pieces and inspiring us to never wear the same thing twice. Whereas beloved Blaine kept it sharp with tailored suit jackets with a brightly coloured bowtie or a sweater vest only he could pull off with a flash of ankle and his faithful brogues.

Ugly Betty

Although this one may seem out of place, Ugly Betty had a big impact on fashion for both men and women, particularly as the show itself was so heavily involved with the fashion industry. Betty didn’t follow any of the ‘rules’ and her evolving style over the series never failed to let her personality shine through. Ugly Betty brought geek chic to the forefront of fashion completely unafraid of loud colours and louder patterns. If Betty’s look wasn’t for you Wilhelmina’s cool, confident and sexy style remained feminine even as she was laying down the law. And for the boys? Daniel’s sleek tailored suits and statement ties make a timeless statement about the easy elegance of men’s fashion.

Keeping up with the Kardashians

These stylish siblings never fail to change the fashion world with their outrageous wardrobe. With the sisters running their own clothing range the ‘Kardashian Kollection’ it’s no surprise that these girls would end up on this list. Kim Kardashian keeps it classy (most of the time) with tailored monochrome and a high pony, unafraid to show off her infamous curves or her razor sharp contour. Kylie Jenner on the other hand, started the show as an awkward teenager in awe of her big sisters’ fashion, but Kylie and her sister Kendall took the fashion world by storm with fashion statements like Kylie’s blue dip dye or Kendall’s effortless California casual. It’s safe to say that the Kardashian’s never fail to surprise us in more ways than one.

Over the last two decades we have seen how TV can influence the fashion world and our style choices, taking inspiration from our favourite character’s we have carved out our own fashion identities. Whether you love the 90’s aesthetic or maybe you can’t help but envy the Upper East siders, you might love Betty’s bold choices or prefer Blaine’s pop of colour in a bowtie. Either way you can find style inspiration just about anywhere, even by just turning on the TV.

Text by Holly Butteriss and Jess Madanayake, image from Freeform via Popsugar