Anyone who watches "New Girl" knows that Zooey Deschanel is utterly adorkable— that eager smile, those startling doe-like eyes, her quirky personality and of course her classy, cute, thrift-shop-chic wardrobe! She won over her male roommates despite her random bursts of song and well-intended meddling into their love lives. But you don’t need a Hollywood stylist to get the look. All you need are a couple of easy fashion tips and the happy-go-lucky mindset of Jess.
Know Your Fashion Math
Bold color + Softer Pattern = Presh. Zooey is all about color: tangerine orange, navy blue, kelly green, eggplant purple. But too much color would have her looking like the elementary students her character is supposed to be teaching! Pair a top or bottom in a bright hue with a classic pattern like stripes. More adventurous patterns (like paisley) should be the star of your outfit, giving a bold color a small part such as a belt or a pair of tights.
Witty Tee + Flowy Skirt = Perfect I'm-Cute-But-Not-Trying-Too-Hard Outfit. When trying to look effortlessly impressive, try this combo. Or ditch the skirt and shimmy into your favorite pair of jeans if you still want that adorkable look for a night of "Dirty Dancing" and popcorn with the gang. Threadless.com has a wide array shirts that will do the trick (We love this delightfully punny T-shirt!
Keep it Classy with a Mini-Dress
There are so many ways a mini-dress can go wrong. Having fabric hugging every last curve or too much skin showing is the opposte of Jess's signature adorkable style. The classy mini-dress is a rarity, but if you know what you’re looking for, finding one (or two, or three) can be a cinch. Because of the short hem, you want to stay fairly covered up on top. Look for dresses with sleeves or with a higher neckline. Stay away from mini-dresses where the bottom portion feels like a pencil skirt. A-line hems are always a safe bet, and the retro feel they give off is really swell ;)
If you find darling mini-dresses that aren’t quite as conservative as you’d hoped, you can easily class them up. Cardigans are must— keep your closet stocked with them, and buy them simple and solid-colored (go bold). For a formal occasion, you can’t go wrong with a fitted button-up blazer. A pair of black tights adds a little more coverage and takes a warm-weather dress into appropriate holiday attire. Also, ditch the heels; ballet flats in angelic hues like periwinkle or even gold give you instant girl-next-door appeal. This elegant mini would look oh-so Zooey with a bright cardigan.
Dazzle in Gold
For holiday parties, you can replicate this charming outfit that Zooey wears in the Christmas episode! You’ll look like the star at the top of the Christmas tree in this look-alike gown from Mod Cloth, festive belt, and timeless flats.
Go Tops-y Turvy
Every girl’s closet could benefit from three essential tops: the button-up, the ruffle and the long-sleeved. The button-up is brilliant because of its versatility: buy a printed one, a pastel one, and a neutral one, and you’re covered for every occasion, provided you have a variety of bottoms. In blacks, whites, beiges, and baby pinks, the ruffle top is perfect for school with high-waisted shorts, and perfect for winning over America with a polka dot skirt (as Zooey proved when she rocked the outfit on New Girl’s pilot episode). Long-sleeved tops in colors that pop are so much fun tucked into flirty skirts.
Simplicity = Key
Leave the clunky bangles, glittery eyeshadow, and giant designer totes at home. Zooey works minimal make-up and accessories and so should you! Transport your junk from place to place with a classic black cross-body bag (How cute is this vintage one? )
Avoid overwhelming jewelry and make-up, so that nothing overshadows the natural sweetheart within. If you can’t resist the urge to accessorize, add an over-sized bow or a thick headband. When Zooey’s got one in her raven locks, she looks just like Blair Waldorf gone good! Who wouldn’t want to capture that perfect blend of good girl and glam?
"New Girl" photos by Greg Gayne/FOX