#ThrowbackThursday: Friends as your ultimate vacation style guide

ANNA WHITE picks out the most revamped outfits in contemporary fashion from hit comedy series


With impending Christmas sales and futile New Year’s resolutions of self improvement, you might think a new wardrobe is in order.

How wrong you are.

Friends shows us that revival is in fact the answer. Whether it’s combining a standard sweatshirt differently or sifting through your parents’ old clothes you needn’t face the Armageddon that is Oxford Street on New Year.

I’m here in Manchester visiting a friend during her final week of term. Instead of being the worthy Cantab I promised my interviewers I’d be by actually starting some bloody work, I’m rocking grey-on-grey trackies whilst vegetating in front of Friends. Only two more hours until my friend returns in post-traumatic seminar boredom to join me.

Whilst mindlessly drooling in front of Ross and Rachel’s conundrums, Chandler’s dry wit and Janice’s piercing cackle, we couldn’t help but notice that Season 3 features some great outfits that have been seamlessly recycled into today’s self-expression.

S3E1 – “The One With The Princess Leia Fantasy”

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Greasy hair aside, Joey’s paisley lilac shirt with a potential Levi’s tag on the breast pocket has most certainly graced British unis from the indie kids at Badock in Bristol (teach me) to those simply going as themselves to Arcsoc’s recent “existential crisis” night.

S3E2 – “The One Where No One’s Ready”

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What was once your Dad’s crusty sweatshirt you wouldn’t dare leave the house in, is now selling for an absolute shitload. Calvin Klein even has the audacity to sell theirs for £90 at Urban Outfitters. That doesn’t hinder their popularity though given it’s a nod to both comfort and style.

S3E4 – “The One With The Metaphorical Tunnel”

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This trio rings all sorts of bells. Even the retro packaging of the ice cream has become a commodity with Topshop and Urban Outfitters selling “fashionable food” like vintage sweets. I’ll leave that diatribe for another time. Rachel’s tailored check trousers are definitely undergoing a revival thanks to the rise of androgynous fashion. What mostly strikes me though is Monica’s ensemble; the white addidas look-alikes, the mom jeans and the cropped geometric Machu Picchu tragedy jumper worn by the likes who spent six gruelling weeks in South Americah away from their four bedroom homes in Surrey. Yes we know you’re best friends after your travels – please move on.

S3E5 – “The One With Frank Jr.”

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Apologies for the shite picture – my print-screen skills are severely lacking. Here we can catch a glimpse of Rachel’s denim dungarees layered with a tight green top, Ross’ rust sweatshirt and most notably Phoebe’s shirt. It ticks a number of boxes from being sheer which can be teamed with a lacy bralet, as well as having velvet embossments.

S3E7 – “The One With The Race Car Bed (1)”

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Oh Rachel, stop moaning. In eight episodes time you’re about to go on the break. Despite the crossed hands that are used by those who start their sentences with “genuinely”, I cannot fault  her cable-knit white polar neck that is simply all the rage at the moment.

S3E21 – “The One With A Chick And A Duck”

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Joey’s colour block polo here is unmistakably 80s and look-alikes have popped up on Wavey Garms a lot recently [insert snide comment about my inherent uncoolness here].

S3E25 – “The One At The Beach”

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The prevalence of ripped high-waisted Levi’s is undeniable. As to whether we want to see your second bum is another question. Rachel dons the holiday print that could also feature on a Hawaiian shirt.

I hope that you not only appreciated the longevity of these trends but that you also revelled in the nostalgia these episodes create. I’m still trying to arrive at the formula for Friends’ incomparable success so if you have any clues then please let me know. How I Met Your Mother and The Big Bang Theory are the Kylie Jenners of modern day comedy; no matter how hard you try you will never be as appealing as your older sibling.

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And finally, no Friends appraisal is justified without a Gunther feature.