90s Fashion Icon: Parker Posey as Party Girl

Probably the greatest single fashion influence of my high-school years was Parker Posey as Mary in the movie Party Girl.  Mary approached fashion with a sense of pagentry.  I mean, she wore every outfit like it was a costume. Sadly, due to project runway, the word “costume” has a negative connotation in fashion — it’s come to mean “too literal interpretation of a concept” or “overdone” as opposed to “garments appropriate for a particular event or occasion.”  What Mary did was the latter, and well.

Sadly, the only evidence I can bring you of this are grainy screen grabs of  no-def digitized 90s technology.  But it’s so amazing it’s worth it. And when you’re done reading this blog post, you are going to log into your Netflix account and watch the movie on instant play.  After which the photo captions will make sense. And you will understand me completely.

Five pesos please!

Hostess of illegal loft party costume.


Go ask your Godmother for a loan costume.


You lower my worth.

Break up with your bf in front of the club he works at costume.


Sometimes you can be sorta...

Postin up at the club with your buddy costume.


Shootin the shit on unauthorized break from your job costume.


Do you think I'd make a good mother?


Hello Chanel!

Unauthorized “shopping” in party-throwers closet costume.


Seduce Mustafa-who-sells-falafel on your way to work costume.


Convince your boss you are a capable professional costume.


Sometimes, if your first costume doesn’t work, you have to try different ones until something does. The continued seduction of Mustafa, could take no less than five costumes:


I would like...


...a falafel with hot sauce...


...a side order of babaganoush...



...and a seltzer...





Humbly receive scolding from your Godmother/Library Boss Lady costume.


Discuss your future in abandoned loading dock costume.



I'm serious about graduate school!

I’m a serious librarian… who’ll never forget her inner Party Girl! costume.

What are your costumes? What outfits make you feel ready for work, play, or adventure?  And don’t forget to watch Party Girl. Besides the outfits, it’s well written, well directed, and a clever mediation on work, life, and purpose.



P.S. Points for you if you can spot the repeat pieces in these costumes! I love when costume designers have characters mix and match things like real people.



About Carrie Leilam Love

i love words, babies, and shoes better than everything.


  1. michaelvonbraithwaite

    I think you know how I feel about this movie. I LOVE IT! Party Girl got me interested in fashion in the FIRST place, because it made styling oneself seem fun, fluid, and fabulous, rather than burdensome and frivolous. Also, I love how her outfits shift with her changing identity (which is sometimes from day-to-day).

  2. Pingback: Blondes With Guns OR Hind-Gaydar is 20/20 « Ironing Board Collective

  3. Kylie

    Thanks for posting this. I’ve been looking for pictures on google, but they’re very rare.

  4. I love this post — one of my favourite 90s films!

  5. Pingback: Party Girl | Synopsis Sophie

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