Claudia Kishi: Unexpected (Yet Completely Phenomenal) Style Icon

by Intern Michelle

I honestly think The Baby-Sitters Club movie is one of the greatest films of all time. You may laugh, but consider the following points:

  • The soundtrack (which I own and listen to regularly) is brilliant. The fact that there are people out there who haven’t heard Girl (Girlfriend) kinda breaks my heart.
  • The “villain” of the film is named Cokie Mason, which is just the right level of ridiculous to be perfect.
  • The scene (spoiler alert, probably?) in which Kristy’s dad doesn’t show up to the carnival still makes me cry to this day. And not in an ironic way, either. That scene is very real.
  • Claudia Kishi. Oh, man. Claudia Kishi.

The first time we see Claudia in The Baby-Sitters Club movie she’s making a mobile out of forks. Like, what? How was she possibly so deeply awesome at just fifteen?

The reason I’m still obsessed with this movie (despite being in my twenties) likely has a lot to do with how formative The Baby-Sitters Club series (BSC, if you will) was to my upbringing. Before I could even read, my mom would read the series to me out loud, and I was a huge fan of the short-lived series on The Disney Channel. As I got older, and was able to read without the help of my mom, I still gravitated towards the series, especially to the character of Claudia.

Claudia was the first fictional character I felt “got” me. She was like the cool older sister—or, perhaps more aptly, the cool older babysitter—I never had. She wasn’t very good in school, except when it came to art class (I wasn’t very good in school, except when it came to English class). Her older sibling , Janine, was a genius, not unlike my big brother, who I suspect could have gotten As in his sleep. Claudia’s closest confidant (aside from the BSC ladies, duh) was her grandmother, Mimi. Their relationship always reminded me of my relationship with my own grandmother, Marilyn. OH, she was also the first one of her friends to get a landline, as was yours truly. I just thought she was the coolest. I mean, I even had the Claudia Kishi doll.

Nowadays, I recognize what a sartorial goddess Claudia was. Here are some of my favorite outfits Ms. Kishi wore:

The sleeves on this black dress. Need I say more?

The white Keds, the knotted-shirt. Claudia Kishi, man. 

Alright, so I think this might be my favorite Claudia outfit of all time. The boots, the denim-on-denim, and is that a statement necklace I see tucked under a buttoned up shirt?! Talk about being ahead of the times.

Just look at the dichotomy between Claudia and “Mean Janine.” I love Claudia’s printed sweater, as well as her earrings (which I can assume she made herself). 


Please tell me—was Claudia as influential for you as she was for me? 




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