"Daddy, I need $300" Bel-Air's princess: Hilary Banks By Emma Frank

Hilary Banks may not have been the brightest of sparks, but damn the woman knew how to dress. With A+ outfit coordination skills, she was a power dresser who knew how to get what she wanted (which most of the time, was money and clothes...)

The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air sitcom aired from 1990-96 and although the show’s star was ostensibly Will Smith, his cousin Hillary took the cake for stepping out time and time again wearing fashionable, bold, chic ensembles. Living with her family in affluent Bel-Air, Hillary represented the stereotype of wealthy upper class socialite with her Chanel skirt suits, matching hats, pearls and short gloves.

However this didn’t stop the gal from letting her hair down every now and then with knock-your-socks-off evening looks such as her signature little black dresses, little red dresses, and other sassy ensembles, adding sexiness and pizzazz to her style.

As with any decade, there were a lot of different things going on stylistically in the 90’s. In 1990-95 alone, dominant fashion subcultures included: Preppy, Hip-hop, Rave culture, Pop Punk, Grunge, and Britpop. The start of a decade usually tails the fashions of the previous one for a few years then comes into its own as the years progress on. As such, the early 90’s saw the wave of power dressing for women continue on from the 80’s in mainstream fashion circles with matching skirt suits, big shoulder pad silhouettes and some strong accessorising.

So without further ado, let’s take a look at the best of Hilary’s fashion prowess as well as some of her most snappy one-liners…

Let's talk about hats, and hats that match blazers, and blazers that are eye-poppingly loud, proud and shoulder-padded to the max. Pair those with chunky gold jewelry and you have.... well, Hilary's signature look!

"I'm a career woman. I don't have time to dust and push around that...Oh, what do you call that big loud thing that sucks up everything?"

Okay, there were just too many incredible bowler-hat-and-power jacket combos to pass up, so here's a few more....

  • Colour blocking? ✓
  • Chunky jewelry? ✓
  • Colour co-ordination? ✓
  • Large flower accessories? ✓
"You have beautiful hair." "I know."

This chic socialite was a big fan of the classic high turtle-neck sweater, preferably in a solid bold colour with shoulder pads, and always paired with a statement necklace and gold dangly earrings.

"Would you two like to join us?" "Maybe later, we have to see if anyone better is here first."

Ms Banks stepped out in just too many knock-out Little Black Dresses to mention. In the early 90's the LBD was a short, tight figure-hugging affair, and damn she knew how to rock them!

"Have you ever seen so many fashion don'ts in one room?"

A 3/4 tailored blazer put together with a 3/4 length skirt - who would've thought? But on this gal it works. Stylish and elegant... and to top it off, a bucket hat with folded rim thrown in, because.... well, why not?

"I'm a beautiful woman trapped in an even more beautiful woman's body."

Last of all, who could forget these lessons in Black and White contrasting fantasticness. Take note: fitted vests with oversized frilly white shirts, statement blazers, bold buttons, houndstooth, pearls and chokers!

“Well, pardon me for being attractive”

All images via Pinterest