Why Clarissa (Explains It All) Is Our Unexpected Style Icon

Not only did she explain it all, but we still want all of Clarissa Darling's mish mash mental wardrobe, too


by Pandora Sykes |
Published on

Along with Tia and Tamera from *Sister, Sister, *there was another sassy lady who ruled our pre-pubescent years, and that was Melissa Joan Hart, aka Clarissa Darling. Not only did she have the best, most-regal name ever, but she had a downright admirable collection of pie charts and printed outfits.

So go on then, why Clarissa?

Aside from the fact that she makes us heave with nostalgia? And that we still want her bedroom? Well, the fact that she basically pre-empted the whole of Urban Outfitters with her naff novelty tees (the kind that used to come free from Disney World Florida and are now highly sought-after on account of being 'vintage'), waistcoasts, distressed denim and addiction to printed shirts. Everything's come back around again, too – floral crop tops, denim shorts, chokers and scrunchies couldn't be more 2014 if they tried. We'd leave behind the abundance of tights and shorts, though. Particularly those cerise ones.

Who else is into it?

Aside from every girl aged 16-21, model Chloe Noorgard and Charlotte Free live in Doc Martens and bright vintage T-shirts, whilst Miley is obviously a big fan of '90s-style crop tops. And sorry, but all of you no doubt now own a 'Mexicana' peasant blouse (a Clarissa favourite), thanks to the inspo that is Isabel Marant. Meanwhile, cycling shorts are totally back this summer (wear with an oversized, cinched boyfriend shirt as if you were about to start painting a room), and black bandanas and hairbands are a key beauty look for SS14, Hawaiian shirts are now laydee territory (blame Palm Beach, it's making a total comeback), and polka dots? Huge. Just ask George Clooney.

How would I do it?

You're probably half way there with your wardrobe's current status quo. Do you own tons of vintage denim (shirts, jackers, jeans)? Some lols T-shirts, some crop tops, some DMs or failing that, some chunky black Chelsea boots? We bet you've got a tartan shirt. All the stuff you flirted with aged 13 is working again right now. We are literally willing that crop top wewore to our 10th birthday party to get back into our wardrobe. Cropped tees aren't tragic when they're paired with black denim rather than stonewashed shorts or a printed skater (leave that to your former self) and chokers aren't woefully dated when they're paired with mussed up bed hair rather than a top knot fastened with a scrunchie and garnished with Clarissa's Pat Butcher-esque dangly earrings.

So should I do it?

If you exhibit a sense of fun in your wardrobe, then, er, yussathinkso. '90s grunge is a perennial trend for a reason, folks. Plus, how fun is this black crop tee with strategically placed daisies? Exactly the same colourway as a fried egg. Which is also a pictorial metaphor for... nice work, H&M! A little bit naughty without being vulgar, just the way we like it. Wear with a kooky take on the black leather skirt and feel like Soo Joo.

Cropped Jersey Top, £3.99 H&M Divided, Short Top £9.99 H&M Divided, Denim Shorts (in both black and blue) £14.99 H&M Divided, Men's Flanneyl Shirt, £14.99 H&M Divided (available in store.)

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This article originally appeared on The Debrief.

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