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How Mary Tyler Moore's style redefined the modern woman

by Courtney Gisriel / / Source: TODAY

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Throughout her six decades in the entertainment industry, actress Mary Tyler Moore's characters became style icons. They captured the imagination of America and defined what a modern woman's wardrobe should look like.

Similarly, Moore herself exuded grace and elegance through her personal style. Here we look back at some of her most iconic style moments on- and off-screen.

Mary Tyler Moore and Dick Van Dyke
Moore was stunning as Dick Van Dyke's on-screen wife in the 1960s.Bettmann Archive via Getty Images

The actress first rose to fame as Laura Petrie on "The Dick Van Dyke Show." The star sported a short bob and often dressed in glamorous dresses like the one above.

Mary Tyler Moore on 'The Dick Van Dyke Show'
Moore went more casual in the "Somebody Has to Play Cleopatra" episode of "The Dick Van Dyke Show."CBS via Getty Images

But Moore's character also dressed down in cigarette pants, a trendy silhouette at the time, and a collarless shirt for one of the show's most memorable scenes.

Mary Tyler Moore and Dick Van Dyke
Moore was an actress of many styles while sharing screen time with Dick Van Dyke.Earl Theisen Collection / Getty Images

She also embraced the pussy-bow blouse trend when it first came into fashion. The style has since had a resurgence with women of a younger generation who love the look for day and night!

RELATED: Pussy-bow blouse trend: Tamron Hall rocks the look on TODAY

Mary Tyler Moore
Moore was inspirational in so many ways as the star of her own sitcom.CBS via Getty Images

In the 1970s, Moore broke free from the housewife mold and starred as single career woman Mary Richards on her eponymous hit series. Her practical in-office style inspired a generation of working women, and her long voluminous hair with a signature flip at the ends became iconic.

Mary Tyler Moore on the premiere episode of 'The Mary Tyler Moore Show'
Moore in the premiere episode of "The Mary Tyler Moore Show" in 1970.CBS via Getty Images

In the episode's pilot, we're introduced to Mary Richards as she moves to the big city of Minneapolis, Minnesota. The Midwestern sweetheart stepped out in a shearling coat and white go-go boots. Throughout its 7-year run, the show continued to reflect the shifting fashions of the time.

The Mary Tyler Moore Show
Mary Richards was confident, and it showed in her personality and in her fashion.CBS via Getty Images

Moore's character also introduced us to a new way to wear a working woman staple — the pantsuit. The versions she wore were always in bold primary colors that reflected her optimism while lending themselves to the practical needs of a strong woman making her way through the streets of the city.

The Mary Tyler Moore Show, Mary Tyler Moore, 1970-77
Another iconic look from "The Mary Tyler Moore Show."Everett Collection

Scarves were also a critical part of Mary Richards' wardrobe — the accessory added a stylish flair to what would have otherwise been a simple look.

RELATED: Remembering Mary Tyler Moore: 5 of her best film and TV moments

Mary Tyler Moore
Moore was constantly adapting throughout her time on "The Mary Tyler Moore Show."CBS via Getty Images

Closer to the end of the show's run, Moore cut her signature locks and continued to embrace the professional style options from the time. She paired a patterned sweater vest with two long strings of pearls and striking earrings.

Mary Tyler Moore at the 1980 Democratic National Convention
Moore at the 1980 Democratic National Convention. Ron Galella / WireImage

In the 1980s, Moore embraced the bright colors of the era. She wore a vivid pink, belted dress in 1980 and chose to pair the look with even more bright accessories — a purple jacket and orange heels.

Mary Tyler Moore
Moore was wearing a different type of scarf after her show ended.Ron Galella / WireImage

She was also drawn to the bold floral patterns of the late '80s. The star paired a long, primary colored skirt with a white blouse and an oversized scarf. It was a far cry from the delicate silk scarves Mary Richards used to wear, but on trend nonetheless!

RELATED: Mary Tyler Moore remembered by friends, co-stars: 'She will be missed terribly'

Mary Tyler Moore
Moore shined, whether it was in a comedy or at an awards show.L. Cohen / WireImage

In 2006, the actress took to the stage to present at the TV Land Awards in a tailored black jacket with detailing at the torso. She paired the look with a beaded black and white scarf.

Mary Tyler Moore
Moore's red carpet look in 2007. Vince Bucci / Getty Images

One year later, Moore celebrated at the Screen Actors Guild Awards in a tailored white blouse with an origami-style knot at the waist and simple black pants. She topped it off with long strands of pearls and drop earrings to match.

RELATED: Mary Tyler Moore was a passionate advocate for diabetes research

60th Primetime Emmy Awards - Show
Moore was elegant on the award show stage.Kevin Winter / Getty Images

Moore stunned in a black dress at the Emmy Awards in 2008. She paired the simple gown with gold bangles and bold drop earrings. The halter neckline drew the eye up to her dazzling smile, the one that could turn on the whole world.

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