Meet the Women Behind Instagram’s Best Throwback TV Accounts

Every generation has its iconic television shows. You know them: the ones you religiously watch every week, with characters who become your best friends and storylines you totally resonate with. The ones that really represent a time and a place. The nineties certainly had no shortage of great TV and, in particular, seriously awesome female leads. Women unapologetically intelligent, fierce, strong and complex, with fabulous style to boot. Nostalgia for the decade is at an all-time high, showing up in music, fashion, makeup, and all the best memes. Instagram accounts, like @buffythestyleslayer, @whatfranwore and @mirandamondays, dedicated to some of the most kick-ass nineties female protagonists (Buffy Summers, Fran Fine and Miranda Hobbes — from Buffy the Vampire Slayer, The Nanny, and Sex and the City, respectively) have become go-tos for endless inspiration, in many ways. With smart, witty captions that relate past context and culture to present-day and feeds filled with coveted outfits, they celebrate the characters for who they are and what they represent. We caught up with the forces behind Instagram’s best throwback TV accounts to talk fashion, pop culture, nostalgia and more.

 

MAE COPELAND – @BUFFYTHESTYLESLAYER  

Photos c/o @buffythestyleslayer

WHAT’S YOUR DAY JOB? I’m a student. I graduate in December. And, other than that, I work for Urban Outfitters and I intern at Paste Magazine, I’m their social media intern.

WHY DID YOU START THIS ACCOUNT? WERE YOU A BIG BUFFY FAN GROWING UP? The hugest. I have loved Buffy since I was a child and I watched it so many times, and admired her and tried to emulate her fashion, the way she spoke, and all of that as a kid. I was inspired by the account @everyoutfitonsatc, where they do pretty much the same thing as me: they take outfits from Sex and the City and they critique it. I was looking for a resume builder, basically, to prove that I can run an account, organically grow followers, and write. And it worked, it’s how I got my job with Paste. They thought I was hilarious and it’s paid off.

ONE OF THE THINGS I LOVE ABOUT THE ACCOUNT IS YOU HAVE BOTH — THE FASHION AND THE SOCIAL COMMENTARY. AND BUFFY IS SO MUCH ABOUT BOTH. Yeah, it’s so funny how relevant Buffy still is. So many people still love it and are just now discovering it. But the fact that I can take a snapshot from a show that aired 20 years ago and apply it to our current culture — and the fashion is really now coming back into style — and  reapply it to our modern lens is really cool. 

IT’S  AWESOME HOW YOU INCLUDE ALL THE CHARACTERS ON THE SHOW. JUST TALKING LADIES, HOW WOULD YOU DEFINE BUFFY, WILLOW, CORDELIA, AND FAITH’S STYLES? Buffy really loves a touch of glamour in her style. she wears mini skirts and tall boots and bobble sunglasses with gold lipstick. And she loves texture and animal prints and suede, leather, satin, mesh — all of that. 

Willow is actually pretty funny, because she’s kind of noted as the least fashionable on the show, but she’s, like, a pioneer for normcore with her crazy sweaters. She has every single pair of Adidas Gazelles and Superstars that you can imagine. So, she’s probably the most relevant to fashion right now.

Faith is super edgy, loves leather pants, just comfort is her jam. I mean, she’s wearing denim cutoffs with huge combat boots to exercise in.

And then there’s Cordelia. She’s very fashion-forward, refined, she wears button-ups and makes them look very sexy.

WHAT DOES THEIR STYLE TELL US ABOUT THEIR CHARACTERS? Well, it’s funny because before Faith rolled into town, Buffy had a lot of edge to her wardrobe. And then Faith took over the bad girl role and she was the rule breaker, and Buffy’s style kind of went to a more modest place. She wore a lot of pastels and they [the show’s creators] were really playing up the good girl role in the dichotomy between the two. Faith’s the bad slayer, she dresses edgy and risqué, and Buffy’s the good slayer and she is well put together and follows the rules. It’s interesting to see how they make their style reflect what’s happening on the show.

BUFFY’S STYLE EVOLUTION REALLY MATCHES HER CHARACTER GROWTH. SORT OF BRIGHT AND BUBBLY AT THE BEGINNING AND DARK AND MOODY TOWARDS THE END. Yeah, absolutely. At the beginning, she’s very carefree and open with her style choices and finding herself as a teenager. And then everything throughout the show happens and her style evolves around with it, where at the end she’s totally different. Everything she wears is unrecognizable from the beginning seasons. 

GOING BACK TO NINETIES FASHION, WHY DO YOU THINK THERE’S SUCH NOSTALGIA FOR IT RIGHT NOW? It’s really crazy because the show aired 20 years ago and I’m in my 20s, so I recall that fashion and now it’s coming back and it’s all in Buffy. Everything that she’s wearing and all the other characters are wearing, you see on the street. I mean, style is cyclical. Everything comes back and all of a sudden, nineties are a thing again. It’s just recalling your childhood and that time period, which doesn’t seem so far away but I guess it really is.

IT’S INTERESTING WATCHING THE LATER SEASONS WHEN BUFFY’S IN COLLEGE AND GETTING INTO THE PEASANT TOPS AND THE MORE EARLY 2000S STUFF, WHICH IS COMING BACK IN FASHION NOW, TOO.  I started this whole project back in January and last year it was very nineties, which inspired me to start the Instagram because I was seeing all this fashion coming back in stores and I’d watch Buffy and be like, ‘it’s exactly that.’ And as I’ve gone through the show, I’ve tried to be somewhat chronological with it, and now fashion and trends are moving into the early aughts and the millennium and you can see Buffy turn from very nineties to very 2000s, very Y2K. I mean, where is fashion going to go after that? It feels so radical right now, all the rhinestones and the low cut jeans of the early 2000s. I can’t even comprehend what’s coming next. Are we gonna do 2010 fashion? What was that?

BUFFY IS FULL OF LIFE LESSONS. WHAT IS ONE THAT WE CAN TAKE FROM HER? Buffy really taught me how to respond to difficult moments and react to complex emotion. It taught me how to react to hardships in a different way and think what Buffy would do, because she was faced with that all the time.

ONE STYLE LESSON? Don’t be afraid of texture and prints. Buffy wears animal print and fur and spandex and leather and satin, and that’s what makes her style so interesting. She’s fearless. 

 

SHANAE BROWN – @WHATFRANWORE  

Photos c/o @whatfranwore

WHAT’S YOUR DAYJOB?  I’m a patient care technician at a hospital.

WHY DID YOU START THIS ACCOUNT? WERE YOU A FAN OF THE NANNY GROWING UP? WhatFranWore started on my Tumblr blog. I was posting screenshots of my favorite Fran outfits and people always asked what she was wearing, so I decided to see how many outfits I could identify. I was too young to really appreciate the show as a child, but I rediscovered it as an adult and I’m definitely a fan.

HOW WOULD YOU DEFINE FRAN’S STYLE? I would describe Fran’s look as 90s chic. The character embodies everything women’s fashion was in the 1990s, she rocked every trend effortlessly. 

WHAT DOES HER STYLE TELL US ABOUT HER CHARACTER? Fran’s style tells us that she’s brave and fearless, her clothes were definitely an extension of her personality and the fashion was a huge part of the show.

HOW DO YOU GO ABOUT IDENTIFYING ALL THE DESIGNERS? I get this question a lot! When I began my research, I had no idea what to search for, but I started with a basic Google Search. Usually, Google will take you to other places such as blogs, online marketplaces, or vintage magazine archives. It’s time-consuming, but it’s fun, and I’ve learned a lot about designers and fashion.

DO YOU HAVE A FAVORITE FRAN OUTFIT? Since starting the Instagram account I have developed an appreciation for all her outfits, even the ones that are a little iffy. I’m not sure I have a favorite anymore.

WHY DO YOU THINK THERE’S SUCH NOSTALGIA FOR NINETIES FASHION RIGHT NOW? I think most of the nineties nostalgia is coming from people like me who were too young to truly appreciate the fashion back then. 

DO YOU THINK FRAN MADE AN IMPACT ON POP CULTURE? I think she has an impact in a small way. One thing I’ve noticed is that while the show is well known, it isn’t universally well known. I would love for the show to be on either Netflix and Hulu so the character can be rediscovered and be truly appreciated for her style.

WHAT’S ONE LIFE LESSON WE CAN LEARN FROM FRAN? Fran was always kind of looked down on by the other characters on the show, however it never stopped her from being exactly who she is. So, I think the life lesson is to be confident because people are always going to have something to say no matter what.  

ONE STYLE LESSON? A simple one but…turtlenecks are a must! 

 

ANONYMOUS – @MIRANDAMONDAYS

Photos c/o @miranadamondays

OTHER THAN SPREADING THE GOSPEL OF MIRANDA HOBBES, WHAT IS YOUR DAY JOB? I’ve pledged to remain anonymous but I can tell you that I’ve had careers from shop girl to corporate girl, but my favorite job is posting Miranda Mondays. 

WHY DID YOU START THIS ACCOUNT? WHY MIRANDA, SPECIFICALLY? I wanted an outlet for my views and Miranda was someone I ALWAYS idolized! I identified with how she kept pushing Steve off at the beginning because she couldn’t believe men were interested in her, I was the same way and still get shocked when a man thinks I’m sexy. 

MIRANDA SEEMS TO HAVE ALWAYS BEEN PIGEONHOLED AS THE LEAST FAVORABLE CHARACTER OUT OF THE SEX AND THE CITY GANG. BUT NOW, THERE SEEMS TO BE A GROWING REALIZATION THAT SHE WAS ACTUALLY ONE OF — IF NOT THE — BEST. WHY DO YOU THINK THAT IS? We have finally moved past the 2007 iconic “ditzy is sexy” phase and are bullet training right into “smart and strong.” People see her now in [these] episodes and are like, omg I love to order Chinese food, watch TV and drink wine, that’s not sad, she just owns her own goddamn apartment and has coin!

MIRANDA HAD SOME PRETTY ICONIC FASHION MOMENTS (THINKING ABOUT THAT BUCKET-HAT-OVER-TEAL-HOODIE COMBO) — HOW WOULD YOU DEFINE MIRANDA’S STYLE? “As free as the wind blows on this beach,” honey she served butch, fish, femme and everything in between. Labels didn’t matter, she had this style that was like, “I know what everyone else will wear today so let me be different.” 

WHAT DOES MIRANDA’S STYLE TELL US ABOUT HER CHARACTER? She is strong, outspoken, but will never take life too serious. One of my favorite fashion moments is the grey suit she wears, it’s very Man Repeller and edgy, she could have been an influencer in her day I swear.

ANY STYLE TIPS WE CAN TAKE FROM HER? Print, layers, and literally wearing anything. She was so different with her fashions, I look back and I’m like, wow Pat Field must have had such a field day coming up with some of those looks! 

WHY DO YOU THINK THERE’S SUCH NOSTALGIA FOR THE NINETIES RIGHT NOW? I think it was a time we had a Clinton in office and people are [now] like fuck, we have this asshole as president let’s just post 90 images and pretend that a Clinton is president. 

WHAT IS ONE OF YOUR FAVORITE MIRANDA MOMENTS ON THE SHOW? This is such a tough one, I will forever have MAJOR FEELINGS when Steve’s mom runs out of the house and Miranda bathes her, I felt like a true Miranda fights being vulnerable so much but can be such a compassionate person. I also love when Miranda flashes the nip. 

DO YOU THINK MIRANDA HAS MADE AN IMPACT ON POP CULTURE? Omg she has made a HUGE impact, I think the real impact started recently with the celebration of independent women and gay men who see themselves in her world.

WHAT IS ONE LIFE LESSON WE CAN LEARN FROM HER? To never stop being yourself! She owned her pointed and opinionated self and everyone else can go fuck off! 

By Yasmine Shemesh

The Holiday Movies We’re Already Watching on Netflix

This is not one of those sponsored posts. Like most people, we just really, reeaaally love Netflix. From Friends  marathons to Stranger Things, we have an enduring obsession and it’s one that is about to spike like crazy because Netflix is already starting to add the best holiday movies to their roster. We know, you already have a ton of things to watch in your queue that you haven’t had time to watch yet this year. But choosing the perfect holiday movie is something that can make or break an evening wrapping presents or getting to know the new in-laws. In eager preparation, we’ve rounded up our top five feel-good movies that will give you the warm fuzzies for the holidays. Isn’t that what this time of year is all about?

FAMILY STONE This movie has it all: drama, romance, family lessons and, most importantly, Diane Keaton. With every character having their own storyline, you get pulled into a mix of emotions contemplating who is your personal protagonist in a movie filled with them. Get ready to laugh, cry then cry again as love triangles burst and family dynamics are tested at an all time high. The perfect holiday flick to watch with your sisters or BFFs.

HOME ALONE Arguably the best Christmas movie of all time. Kevin reminds us that it’s not so bad to be at home for the holidays and not jetting off to France. From the Christmas sweaters, to his hilarious schemes to catch the idiotic burglars, this is slapstick done right by the master that was John Hughes. Watch this one after the family dinner is winding down, with wine and chocolate.

A CHRISTMAS STORY There’s just something so endearing about a dysfunctional family on Christmas. This is a classic from the ’80s, set in the ’40s, that follows the story of Ralphie and his quest to get a BB gun under the tree. Perfect to watch while decorating the tree.

LOVE ACTUALLY Get out the tissues and wine, this one is a roller coaster. The British film turned into an immediate cult classic after its release in 2003. It follows eight different couples as they work through their love lives during the holidays and brings the whole spectrum of emotion from poignant moments to Bill Nighy playing guitar naked. We love everything about this movie.

ELF This one is for the kid in you and perfect for watching with the little ones. Comedy dad Will Ferrell was accidentally transported to the North Pole as a toddler and raised as a elf. Now, as an adult, he can’t help but feel out of place, so he leaves to New York City in search of his real father. Filled with good spirited laughs and an ever-so-charming romance with Zooey Deschanel, this flick is the perfect dose of Yuletide cheer.

So, what are you watching this week?

One to Watch: Ying Ying Li, star of The Knick

Clive Owen and Ying Ying Li get into more than a little trouble together in HBO’s latest smash hit, The Knick, where he plays Dr. John Thackery, the genius drug addict and antihero at New York City’s Knickerbocker hospital, and her character Lin-Lin is the most beautiful kind of enabler. From the wild state of medicine at the turn of the century, to the gorgeous Victorian-inspired clothes, we’re kind of obsessed. We fell for Ying Ying Li in the very first episode so we had to find out more about her. Turns out she’s Canadian, totally funny, not afraid to rock a mohawk, and has collected some amazing stories since starting her acting career a few short years ago. We talked to Ying Ying about acting with Clive Owen, her “life is a buffet” motto and her favorite places in New York’s East Village.

HOW DID YOU GET YOUR START IN ACTING? There were a lot of dips and forays along the way, but in my mind my real “jumping in with both feet” moment was when I went to my first audition. After I finished theatre school, I kept making excuses why I wasn’t ready to audition – no agent, no credits, not even a professional headshot. Eventually, I got so sick of making excuses that I finally submitted myself to a bunch of castings, and lo and behold, I was invited to audition for one of them. And I just kept going after that! The thing with a creative career is that there is no automatic treadmill to take you around the bases. So you just have to repeatedly pick yourself up by the scruff of the neck and throw yourself into the gaping maw of the world you want to enter.

ANY TOP MEMORABLE MOMENTS SO FAR? One of my earlier gigs was shooting a commercial with Coco Rocha. I was an office girl with Velma Dinkley glasses, and Coco was supposed to dance on my desk. So basically she did all the work and I would just kind of duck if her limbs swung my way. I was really impressed by how quickly she learned the choreography, but you know what was the craziest thing? Coco was the hardest working person on set, but she never complained or acted like a baby or even joked about being tired. It was awesome. I’d seen diva behavior before, and wondered if that was how actors are supposed to be. But working with Coco showed me that the stronger choice is to hold yourself to a higher standard. I do cringe at how shy I was when I talked to her, though! I was like the mousy nerd girl in high school who’d just been approached by the head cheerleader. I remember hoarsely whispering, “I am from Canada, too,” before collapsing back into total silence.

WE LOVE YOU IN THE KNICK. CAN YOU TELL US WHAT IT’S LIKE WORKING WITH CLIVE OWEN? Thanks! It’s a small role, but I’m honored just to be involved and value the opportunity to work with such a fantastic creative team. I’ve always been a huge fan of Clive’s work, and a part of me still can’t believe that I got to work with him. To be honest, on my first day, I felt like a huge imposter! Like it was just a matter of time before I would be found out and kicked off the set. I had to give myself a pep talk, like, “Ok, so yes, that’s Clive Owen, but you belong here too.” Working with Clive has been an incredible learning experience. He is everything you’d think a leading man should be – professional, kind, down-to-earth, and a quick-study, so smart.

WHAT ARE YOU WORKING ON NEXT?
I live by the “life is a buffet” motto and try to work on a variety of projects, including theatre, on-camera work, even once modeling for Imitation of Christ at NYFW despite my non-modelesque proportions. My ultimate goal is to be an actor/writer, so the project I’m most excited about right now is making a short film based on one of my short stories. Coming up, I have a feature film coming out in early 2015 that I am pretty psyched about!

YOU’VE BEEN LIVING IN NEW YORK CITY FOR YEARS. WHAT NEIGHBORHOOD ARE YOU IN NOW? TELL US ABOUT YOUR FAVORITE PLACES. Right now I live in the East Village, close to Noho and NYU, and I LOVE IT! My favorite neighborhood places are Colombe for coffee, Mighty Quinn’s BBQ for wings and ribs, Veselka for pancakes and borscht, Soba-ya for healthy but delicious lunches, Angel’s Share on a weeknight for quiet cocktails with friends, and Grassroots for a spacious, unassuming dive bar right on St. Marks. Oh, and if you like the idea of impeccable sushi served in a raucous and merry environment, go to Sushi Dojo and ask to be seated at the bar with Chef David, you won’t regret it. Muji is a godsend for household goods and of course I love browsing the boutiques around East 9th Street.

Winning the red carpet with Jessi Cruickshank

The list of reasons why we love Jessi Cruickshank is really, really long. We could start with all the things we have loved on her resume, which includes starting her career in comedy in Vancouver alongside Seth Rogan; hosting The Hills After Show on MTV (syndicated in 10 countries, nominated for 3 Gemini Awards); writing the CW hit comedy series Oh Sit! with Jamie Kennedy; interviewing celebrities for MTV, E!, The Style Network and eTalk; and being an ambassador for Free the Children. We could also talk about how cool and down to earth she is, or the fact that she holds the title of “Best Dressed Host” from TV Guide and is constantly featured for her fashion forward style. But what we love most is how she always makes us laugh. Hard.

We caught up with the Canadian star to talk marriage, red carpet interviews and her fearless approach to comedy.

YOU’VE INTERVIEWED SO MANY STARS. WHAT ARE YOUR MOST MEMORABLE MOMENTS? My goal is always to make every interview, no matter who it’s with, unique and memorable. That’s why I always try to take a fun, fearless and above all different approach with celebrities. Last month alone, I had John Travolta paint a portrait of me, I fed Josh Hutcherson Timbits, I kissed Jonathan Bennett… Over the years I’ve had some pretty hilarious interviews with the cast of The Hills, Twilight, Tom Cruise but most recently I did shots of vodka with Emma Thompson live on a Toronto Film Festival Gala Red Carpet. That was memorable/classy.

WHAT IS THE MOST CHALLENGING PART OF DOING LIVE INTERVIEWS ON TV? For me, the most challenging thing about a live interview is keeping it interesting for the viewer. On live TV, you cant just cut out the boring parts. Plus, the celebrity is usually doing the interview to promote a movie or a TV show and of course I am supposed to ask them about whatever it is they are promoting – but I don’t think its interesting to hear an actor talk about their movie over and over again on every outlet. I’d much rather ask questions that will reveal something new, or funny or even make things awkward or uncomfortable…. That’s going to show the viewer much more about the star than asking the same old boring questions about a movie. Plus, it has never been my goal to be ‘cool’ on TV or to be ‘friends’ with the celebrity I am interviewing… that doesn’t serve the audience. I have never been afraid to humiliate myself on television if it makes for a hilarious on-air moment… that’s my little secret!

YOU JUST GOT MARRIED – CONGRATULATIONS! NOW TELL US ABOUT THAT DRESS. Thank YOU! I still feel like I snuck into a club underage and the marriage bouncer is going to kick me out at any moment. I am way to immature to be anyone’s wife… I can’t even say the word ‘husband’ without laughing. The dress was a custom Mark Zunino Couture gown. I didn’t want to wear something that anyone else had on my wedding day so I designed every inch of it with him. The dress was entirely backless and the shoulders were made with gold metal paillettes, very military inspired. The best part was that we designed two bottoms so I swapped the heavy dramatic skirt out for a short, fun skirt during the reception!

WHAT’S THE BEST PART ABOUT BEING MARRIED SO FAR? Technically being ‘married’ means you join all your assets… which to me, means I can steal his clothes. I have no plans to ever give back his vintage Metallica t-shirt or his buffalo plaid Pendleton bag.

WHERE CAN WE SEE YOU RIGHT NOW? I am on Canada’s #1 Entertainment show eTalk every weeknight and I host Canada’s Smartest Person on CBC every Sunday night at 8pm. Plus, I just launched my own website so you seriously can’t escape my ginger face. And for that, I apologize.

Canadian actress Christina Sicoli on being a woman in comedy

She’s been nominated for Leo Awards, Canadian Comedy Awards (five times!) and is a regular on the film fest circuit. Next up, she adds writer to her resume with her first feature film in pre-production. Christina Sicoli is one funny leading lady to watch. She also happens to be a seriously cool chick with enviable style. Christina stopped by the Garmentory HQ to nab a hot little number for a red carpet appearance recently and sat down with us to talk about being a woman in comedy and her love for Rag & Bone.

YOU’RE AN ACTRESS, COMEDIAN AND WRITER WITH AN INSANELY COOL RESUME. TELL US HOW YOU GO YOUR START. My grandma told me that when she held me in her arms for the first time she said, “Our little clown is coming home”. I think she magically planted the seed. Grandmas are special that way.

WHAT IS YOUR BIGGEST CHALLENGE AS A FEMALE COMEDIAN IN THE INDUSTRY? Dyslexia. AND probably being categorized. When you are introduced into the acting world as a comedic actress, of course you’ll get pigeonholed. Comedy is second skin to me, but there are a million and one other sides that I can push, contort and explore. Being able to go from one extreme to the other go hand in hand. At the end of the day it’s about putting on a pair of shoes, creating a character and working on roles that excite, scare, and challenge me. That’s what I’m interested in doing.
I’m beyond the point of feeling like I need to prove myself to anyone. I am who I am, and if someone is to turn a “blind eye” because they don’t think I’m right for a certain role or I don’t posses those human emotions that’s their opinion. Their job is to think outside the box and discover something that may be a little more unexpected or unconventional. I’m not a fan of the word, “No” or waiting around for someone to tell me what I can or can’t audition for. My job is to keep creating opportunities for myself and continue to collaborate with those who inspire me.
The more fun I have, the more at ease I am, and the less I worry about things that are out of my control. This makes me the best that I can be while keeping true to who I am. It feels good knowing that I’m capable of taking creative control over my career. Just like I’m taking control over my shoe collection.

IF YOU COULD WORK WITH ANYONE, DEAD OR ALIVE, WHO WOULD YOU CHOOSE? Bill Murray.

WHAT ARE YOU WORKING ON RIGHT NOW? I’m currently starring in Convos With My 2yr Old (Editor’s Note: Click here to watch episodes, they’re too funny!), and the Sci-fi comedy, Paranormal Solutions Inc. Also, my first feature film that I’ve written, Small Cop, is in pre-production.

WHAT ARE THE TOP 3 THINGS ON YOUR SHOPPING WISH LIST RIGHT NOW?
Black Rachel Comey Mars boots, a curling iron and the entire Rag & Bone flagship store.

christinasicoli.ca