Beth Harmon from the Queen's Gambit

7 Ways to Dress Like Beth Harmon from ‘The Queen’s Gambit’ & Feel Like a Queen Doing It

The entire time I was watching  The Queen’s Gambit, I simultaneously stared at the screen as I attempted to purchase versions of Beth’s clothes. Beth struggles to be respected in the male-dominated world of chess because she values what she wears just as much as she values playing chess. She’s described as “too glamorous” to be a world champion, but like the badass she is, Beth manages to force the world champion to knock down his king while looking like a queen. 

From classic but chic shift dresses to stylish trench coats, Beth is the winter style icon we all wish to be. While she’s gracing chess tournaments across the world, she always looks fashion-forward, refined, and even veers into a cool dark academia vibe — especially as she’s just starting out. Beth inverts what’s expected of her as a chess player, but also as a woman in the 1960s; she is very liberated in her actions and expresses herself through her clothes. If you want to go out there and feel like an empowered woman with a vintage touch, follow this style guide to channel your inner Beth Harmon.

  1. 1. Focus on your outer layers with a long structured coat

    Beth Harmon from Queen's Gambit

    Coats not only protect you from the cold, but also allow you to show off your personality. Wherever Beth goes in the winter, she seems to have a long wool or trench coat. What I love most about Beth’s wardrobe is that her coats accentuate whatever outfit she’s wearing. Either by drawing out colors or patterns, her coat is always part of the look — usually my favorite part. I particularly love this coat because of the unique neckline and trendy pattern. While it’s definitely the statement piece of her entire outfit, this coat doesn’t overpower her delicate black gloves and dress. Instead, they all come together for a cohesive look. 

  2. 2. A classic shift dress is always in style

    Beth Harmon from queen's gambit

    I’ve always loved the flattering look of shift dresses, which can make your legs look longer. I’m barely five feet tall, so I’ve found this shape works really well for me. Beth’s go-to pieces are shift dresses, which she layers with shawls and sweaters. These not only give Beth a mature look, but also give her a lot of freedom on how she wants to accessorize. A basic shift makes for a great little black dress, but experimenting with colors and patterns is also very easy with this traditional shape. 

  3. 3. Turtlenecks are your best friend

    Beth Harmon in the Queen's gambit

    Turtlenecks and mocknecks are the winter staple you cannot — and should not — ignore. Perfect with any type of clothing, you can dress them up or down for every occasion. Beth switches from tight-fitting turtleneck tops to thicker wool turtleneck sweaters, usually pairing them with a pair of black cigarette pants or a skater skirt. Overall, turtlenecks are an easy favorite that you can always throw on and elevate any look. 

  4. 4. Play with scarves

    Beth Harmon in the queen's gambit

    Scarves, either around your neck or in your hair, can be daunting. You may not want to look like a Blair Waldorf wannabe, or the look may feel a bit too Parisian and impractical. However, with the right scarf, you can nail a really fun boho look without too much effort — it’s perfect for walking around a college campus like Beth! Check out the scarf section at your favorite store and see which ones look around like the right size to put in your hair, and which patterns feel the most you. 

  5. 5. Have fun with mixing patterns

    Beth Harmon in the queen's gambit

    Mixing patterns doesn’t have to be scary! Even if you’re a single-pattern purist, there are a few ways that you can still feel comfortable while being a bit risky. Put on scarves that have different patterns, but the same colors. That way, you still look cohesive, but you’re able to achieve Beth’s fun 1960s wardrobe. Another way is through finding a primary pattern and a secondary pattern. Your primary pattern will be flashier than your secondary. My choice for secondary always is small dots, a muted floral or paisley, or a really compact checkered pattern. These aren’t too noticeable and allow you to play more with your primary pattern. The best part about mixing patterns is that you don’t need to update your wardrobe; instead, you can use all of the pieces you’ve thrown to the back of the closet.

  6. 6. Slacks can dress up every outfit

    Beth Harmon in the queen's gambit

    Even though we are still in a pandemic, that does not mean you need to wear sweatpants with your nice tops all year long. A pair of cigarette pants look fantastic with a turtleneck, and are comfier than jeans if you’re not leaving the house for the day. Plus, they look super chic with any patterned tops and sweaters you want to try on. Whether you’re flirting with your chess tutor or dancing in your living room, cigarette pants are always the way to go. The best part about a pair of slacks is that if you do need to run out of the house, you won’t feel self conscious about being in loungewear, and you’ll look super sophisticated doing it. 

  7. 7. It’s never the wrong time for a cardigan

    Beth Harmon in the queen's gambit

    If Taylor Swift taught us anything this summer, it’s that cardigans never go out of style. Throughout the entirety of The Queen’s Gambit, Beth is throwing cardigans on and off to complement whatever she’s wearing at that hour. I particularly love the patchwork cardigan Beth wears since it’s really unique. Pair a cardigan with any top or dress for the perfect winter layered look. Pick up a cardigan that screams “1960s chess goddess” and no one will be able to take their eyes off you. 

The Queen’s Gambit is a gem of a show, and Beth Harmon is the perfect style icon for these chilly winter months. Her sophisticated vintage look is perfect for casual days on Zoom or if you need to dress up, making it the perfect versatile wardrobe. I don’t think I’ll ever give up this ’60s-inspired glam vibe ever again.