Dress Like Ferris Bueller from Ferris Bueller's Day Off

Updated on December 10, 2016
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Nerd, cinephile, TV-junky, research-loving, left-leaning, science-fiending, atheist from the gutter. Follow me on Twitter @TheGutterMonkey.


The epitome of 1980s rebellion, the character of Ferris Bueller from 1986's Ferris Bueller's Day Off is just as iconic as the film that shares his name. Aside from showcasing just how fun truancy and teenage philosophizing can be, this classic John Hughes creation (portrayed by Matthew Broderick) also happened to exhibit a unique, flamboyant clothing style that's one to be reckoned with in the magical land of film fashions. And today we're going to examine how you can achieve the look for yourself!

From his loud and iconic vest and jacket to his twist and shouting shoes, I've endeavored to find them all. So whether you're planning for Halloween, your next 80's themed party, or just your next 'sick' day, you should find what you need below.

Oh! And, as always, if you have any additions or more authentic recommendations to add to the list, let me know in the comments section at the bottom of the page and I'll look into them ASAP. Enjoy.

The Beret

As a part of going incognito, Ferris Bueller is sometimes seen wearing a black beret during the film, accompanied by a pair of sunglasses in order to further help him in going unnoticed by the curious eyes of parents and any school faculty which may be wandering the streets searching for him.

The yellow and red insignia on the beret is that of the 32nd armored regiment; the motto at the bottom reads "Victory or Death". Incidentally, the 32nd armored regiment happened to be Elvis Presley's (another renown symbol of rebellious youth) regiment when he was in the army and in "G.I. Blues"; and Axl Rose, lead — and slightly insane — singer of Guns N' Roses, has the regiments insignia tattooed on his left arm. Suffice it to say, Ferris is in good company with his choice of headgear.

Below we have a similar beret style, but, sadly, with no insignia to accompany it. To apply your own, however, shouldn’t be too difficult of a task for the more hardworking of you out there. Here’s what you do: After buying your plain, black beret (either the one available below or another of your choosing) do a quick and simple online search (Google should work just fine) for an iron-on crest of the insignia that we spoke about above. After receiving both of your items, iron on the insignia and you should be ready to go. Pretty easy, right?

Incidentally, if anyone has any word on finding a beret with this particular insignia already on it — and you want to save us all the trouble of using an iron-on crest — feel free to drop us a link to the beret, or instructions on how to acquire it, in the comments section at the bottom of this article. If your link checks out, I’ll post it here.

The Vest

Both extravagantly gaudy and culturally iconic, this almost (but not quite) cheetah-like patterned, button-up sweater vest is Ferris Bueller’s most recognized and sought after article of clothing (and for good reason; it’s awesome!).

The replica sold below is a pretty good copy of the original that's very well-made and should be immediately recognizable to anyone who hasn’t been living under a rock throughout the course of their entire life (seriously, what kind of American hasn’t seen Ferris Bueller’s Day Off? Commies). This vest is very soft and comfortable with the classic Bueller pattern woven right into the nit. Aside from helping you replicate the signature look of your favorite 1980s slacker (for costume parties, Halloween, or some other eccentric obsession with dressing like iconic movie characters), this vest also has the added benefit of just being a genuinely comfortable, well-made piece of clothing that you can wear in your day-to-day life (it’s not merely a cheap costume).

As far as achieving the Ferris Bueller look goes goes, you may be able to skip out on the shoes, socks, hat, or many of the other items on this list, but the vest is an absolute must-have if you expect anyone to know what character you’re trying to portray. Luckily, it can be purchased for under (albeit, barely) the price of fifty dollars, so it’s a relatively inexpensive purchase (as far as clothing goes) which shouldn’t irreparably break your wallet (unlike most replicas of movie clothing).

With all that being said, if you’re willing to shell out a lot more cash, there may be other — more exact — replicas of Ferris Bueller’s vest available online at significantly higher prices. Personally, I wouldn’t bother, though, as the vest below should get the job done very well. But, hey, it’s your money, folks!

The White Tee

Nothing too fancy here, guys. Which is good; as it also means nothing too expensive here. Nevertheless, as unflashy as the plain, white, crew neck t-shirt is, it’s somewhat of a necessity for you to wear it behind your newly purchased, signature Ferris Bueller vest (available above).

Ferris wears his white, crew neck shirt under his well-known vest sweater throughout the majority of Ferris Bueller’s Day Off, and is seen wearing only the white shirt in a few scenes as well (hence how we know it’s just a plain white t-shirt). Where you purchase your plain white T from or what company makes it isn't really of much importance as there are no designs or labels to be seen on the one we see in the movie. In fact, most of you probably have a few already laying around somewhere at home so, in all likelihood, you probably won’t have to purchase anything at all as far as this undergarment goes.

However, in the unlikely event that you don’t have your own white, crew neck T (who knows, maybe you’re a V-neck sorta person) fear not. These little suckers are available almost everywhere, from Wal-Mart, dollar stores, malls, and a plethora of online retailers. Even better, they’re available at wonderfully cheap prices (they shouldn’t cost much more than an assortment of plain socks or underwear) and often come in packs of three or four (or something like that).

If you don’t feel like getting out hunting your white T’s down at local shops, and you aren’t in the mood to do your own Googling, fear not. I’ve included below a quick link to an inexpensive pack of five Fruit of the Loom crew neck, short-sleeved T shirts to meet your needs (multiple sizes are available when you click the link).

The Leather Jacket

The quintessential representation of rebellion, the leather jacket has been the standard uniform of the cool guy who doesn't play by the rules all the way from Brando in The Wild One (1953), to Happy Days' the Fonz, to the anarchy-loving Tyler Durden of 1999's Fight Club. Given that, it's no wondering that the 1980's version of Hollywood’s biggest naughty-boy would sport one as well on his infamous day of playing hooky.

Just like the Fonz, Ferris Bueller's leather jacket has gone down as pop culture classic in movie and TV attire. Along with Bueller’s signature vest (mentioned above in this article), this is the second most importance piece of attire needed if you want to truly embody our lovable teenage hero.

To get a replica Ferris Bueller styled leather jacket of your own, the good citizens of the world are luckily hard at work helping us out all over the world and the interwebs. Below is a decent replica we’ve found on Amazon.com for under 200 dollars. It’s made out of genuine, high quality leather and is available in different sizes (ask the seller about the size right for you after clicking on the link below). Like the replica Ferris Bueller vest we mentioned before, this item also isn’t merely a cheap costume accessory (although it obviously can be used as part of a Ferris Bueller costume if needed) and is designed to be worn as an actual piece of clothing (hence why the price tips over the hundred dollar mark). To find other replica’s, there’s more available on both Amazon and other online stores around the internet.

(NOTE: Ferris' jacket has what appears to be a lizard fob hooked onto its front pockets zipper. For added authenticity, try looking up "lizard fob" on Amazon.com for a similar one of your own; a keychain should work great.)

The Pants

In Ferris Bueller's Day Off, Ferris pairs the chaos of his vest and jacket with a more classical look of a regular, loose-fitting pair of gray/light blue suit pants leftover from a suit he wears earlier in the film (nabbed from his friend, Cameron's, fathers closet). A regular pair of chinos or dress pants should suffice here; with the added addition of a wallet with a chain on it (hook it to your belt loop and you're good to go).

The Socks

Ferris wears a black pair of socks, with brown toes and heals, with what appears to be a series of Canadian flags (or possibly world flags) printed all over them.

Unfortunately, I can't find too much information on these socks or make much from the few screenshots of them. But since they are mostly covered by your shoes and pants, hopefully you'll be able to get away with simply wearing a normal pair of black argyle socks (or something like the ones available below) in their place.

If anyone has more information on these odd stockings, let me know in the comments section below so we can further add to the authenticity of this list. Thanks! (and sorry!)

The Shoes

Never underestimate the power of a good pair of shoes. If you take a look at anyone wearing a Bueller-inspired ensemble and notice there's just something missing that you can't quite place, more than likely it's the absence of these.

Ferris wears a pair of white Oxford shoes laced with black shoestrings in the film and white shoestrings on the movies cover photo.

(If the photo below isn't showing white shoes, don't worry, white's are available when you click the link.)


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