19 Outfits From 'Gilmore Girls' That Are Peak Early 2000s

The most iconic of the bunch.

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Gilmore Girls aired its pilot episode on Oct. 5, 2000. And, two decades later (can you believe it?), mothers and daughters everywhere relate to every scene, from a heart-to-heart conversation to a life milestone, and beyond. The show was spot-on when it came to the joys and perils of both characters' journeys through life. The other detail producers nailed? The Gilmore Girls outfits.

From slip dresses and silk shrugs to argyle sweaters and plaid skirts, each character’s wardrobe was the pinnacle of early-aughts style. They loved to play with patterns, experiment with colors, and layer like pros.

The costume department of the show is a time capsule, to be sure. In fact, several looks are good enough to integrate into your wardrobe today. Take a stroll down memory lane, celebrating Gilmore Girls’ 20th anniversary in style.


School Uniforms

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Gilmore Girls opened with Rory in high school, living in Stars Hollow and attending Chilton private school. Though her uniform was styled with everything from sweater vests to blazers, the iconic blue plaid skirt was her most-often worn look throughout the first three seasons of the popular series.


Tie-Dye T-Shirt, Denim Shorts, and Cowboy Boots

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In the second episode of the series, Lorelai’s style is really set in stone, as she comes running down the stairs in a pink tie-dye tee, Daisy Duke cutoffs, and cowboy boots. It was, of course, indicative of boldly colorful and endearingly mismatched layers to come.


Buttoned-Up Style

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Paris was the most uptight of the bunch, never without a hair out of place. And her wardrobe reflected that. She was most often seen in perfectly paired cable-knit sweaters and blazers.


Debutante Dresses

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Rory became a deb during Season 2 of Gilmore Girls, wearing a corseted white gown with embroidered white flowers all over the top and with a gigantic full skirted bottom. With slinky straps that also boasted a floral motif, it was peak ‘00s to be sure.


Mixed-Print Tops

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With a bold graphic print, mismatched sleeves, and just a little bit of leopard trim, Lorelai’s top to host Rory’s birthday party is 100% early-aughts, through and through. And, of course, you can’t forget about the icing on the cake, by way of a tortoise headband atop her head.


2000s Classics

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Lane is Rory’s best friend and, while her apparel is just as youthful as Rory’s throughout the series, she often reaches for more of the classics of the 2000s, due to her overbearing parents. Think argyle sweaters and denim jackets. That said, she often opts for color to show off her whimsical side.


Cable Knits and Mini Skirts

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When Rory headed to college, she refined her look and her choices seemed much more adult than they had in the past. She did, however, choose outfits that were textbook ‘college’ in the early-aughts, with plaid miniskirts, loafers, and V-neck cable-knit sweaters.



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Lorelai surely loved her accessories, from hats to headbands. Bandanas were also a part of her iconic wardrobe on the regular.


Bright Colors and Layered Sets

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Madeline and Louise, when not in school uniform, loved to embrace the trends of the moment. You loved them for their bright colors, body-conscious looks, and whimsical accessories.


Chunky Oversized Knits

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In the pilot episode of the show, Rory wears an oversized cable knit sweater that showed off her comfortable yet youthful style. It was the overspill of ‘90s grunge that stuck around for the early ‘00s when the show was set.


Silk Camisoles and Shrugs

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To attend dinner with her mother and father every week, Lorelai would step up her look on occasion, slipping into silk camisoles and — yes — shrugs that made her look a little more dressed-up for the evening. Anyone remember “going out tops”? Well those are alive and well throughout the entirety of the Gilmore Girls series.


Prom Dresses

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For prom night, Rory slipped into an off-the-shoulder purple silk dress, pulling her hair up into a bun and sprinkling it with embellishments. It was the dress that every girl would have wanted to wear to prom night in the early aughts — that is, if you weren’t a part of the slinky slip dress crowd.


Bright Silk Shirts

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At work, Lorelai would slip into a wardrobe rife with blazers, tailored pants, and, of course, brightly colored silk shirts. The early aughts were full of pops of color that turned a drab office suit into something with just a little more personality. The shinier, the better.


Sleek Leather Jackets

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When Rory headed to college, she traded in her corduroy truckers for a sleeker look by way of leather jackets that had little to no hardware. It was, of course, the iconic fall jacket look of the decade.


Cat T-Shirts and Hoodie Sweaters

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Love cats? How about cats dressed up like the queen of England? So did Lorelai, as it turns out, wearing one of the biggest trends of the early 2000s: graphic printed tees with ironic animal images. And, of course, she paired it with a knit hoodie sweater that was popularized by Juicy Couture in its heyday.


Prom Night Pairs

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Madeline and Louise went for the slinkier look for prom night, coordinating their red looks with crochet details that were pretty ubiquitous on evening looks in the 2000s.


Little Black Dresses

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Little black dresses are timeless, though they're reimagined with unique stylistic choices with each passing decade. In the early aughts, Rory took the trend and ran with it, opting for a subtle black-on-black polka dot pattern, complete with sheer top panel.


Shearling-Lined Corduroy Jacket

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In the early 2000s, the perfect fall jacket was undoubtedly the shrunken shearling-lined corduroy trucker. It was colorful, cozy, and just the right weight for fickle fall weather.


Colorful Chef’s Coats

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Sookie was most often seen in her chef’s coat, and she had more than you could count, in every color and pattern under the run. And, as the 2000s were all about a staple accessory, Sookie’s was definitely her eclectic collection of bandanas and hair-ties.

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