‘Sex and the City’ reboot: 5 fashion takeaways from ‘And Just Like That…’
Is Carrie her stylish old self? What’s the consensus on Miranda’s silver-gray hair? And doesn’t Charlotte just seem very Charlotte in her blouse, pencil skirt and micro Lady Dior handbag?
Carrie Bradshaw’s tulle skirt was the defining feature of her wardrobe, appearing in the show’s opening sequence. Credit: AA Film Archive/Alamy Stock Photo
But without SATC’s longtime costume designer Patricia Field at the helm, can her successors, Molly Rogers and Danny Santiago, emulate the fantasy closet that defined the original series?
Here are five takeaways from what we’ve seen so far.
Each character had an instantly recognizable sense of style unique to them. Credit: Pictorial Press Ltd/Alamy Stock Photo
A missed opportunity for nonconformist dressing?
The looks revealed so far offer a mixed bag of styles. There are hits: Carrie’s voluminous polka-dot skirt by Carolina Herrera, Charlotte’s Emilia Wickstead shirt dress and Miranda’s matching silk tie-dye blouse and skirt by Gerard Darel.
But there are misses, too. As put-together as every outfit appears to be (in what is, admittedly, a relatively small sample of costumes), none really break new ground — something the original show did consistently. Kim Cattrall’s absence also leaves us speculating what Samantha’s take on sexy 60-something dressing (she was older than the other characters) might have added to the show.
“It’s all very prim and polished,” said Rebecca Weinberg, who worked with Field as a costume designer on the original show, in a phone interview. “There aren’t many surprises.”
Sarah Jessica Parker on the set of “And Just Like That…” this August wearing a Carolina Herrera skirt. Credit: James Devaney/Getty Images/GC Images
“What made the impact of ‘Sex and the City’ fashion so compelling and enduring was how the show blended high-end stuff with thrift and budget finds,” Weinberg said. “It created this perfect mix of high (and) low that’s become so ubiquitous when it comes to street style and fashion in general. It reflected the way we dress in real life, just in a more elevated way.”
But, for now, the reboot’s styling doesn’t quite reflect that high-low combo, Weinberg said.
“There are plenty of big names, but I don’t see a lot of smaller, sustainable or indie labels alongside them yet — which you’d imagine Carrie would have embraced,” she added. “I think that’s a missed opportunity.”
Old gems and vintage pieces shine
Eagled-eyed fans have already spotted shout-outs to some of the original’s most recognizable pieces.
“It certainly makes sense that the characters are wearing vintage, because it was something they did the first time around,” Silver said. “As their style has evolved and they’ve aged, it’s only natural that they would have more pre-loved pieces in their closets today.
“Also, vintage has become even more predominant in stylish women’s wardrobes, at any age, particularly post-pandemic,” he continued. “As these are women on the cutting edge of fashion, the fact they’re embracing retro style was to be expected.”
Parker and Cynthia Nixon on the set of “And Just Like That…” in July, with Parker wearing the vintage Fendi baguette bag. Credit: James Devaney/GC Images/Getty Images
“I see it more like an homage to a sustainable trend that has been circulating for quite a few years now,” she wrote in an email. “And I love this intention.”
The outfits are all over Instagram
We don’t know if Carrie is now big on social media, or whether Miranda regularly checks her Twitter (though we like to think Samantha would have been pretty big on Instagram). But one thing is certain: Their outfits already have a huge following online. Bazalinchuk’s Instagram account has amassed nearly 80,000 followers in just one month, with the listed items often selling out within hours.
Kristin Davis seen on the set of “And Just Like That…” in July, wearing the vintage Givenchy ruffle top from 1996. Credit: James Devaney/GC Images/Getty Images
“When I saw that SATC was making a reboot, I knew immediately that we all needed this account,” Bazalinchuk said. “I know the rush around SATC fashion, and how we all had to wait to know what the ladies wore (in the original series). So this time I didn’t want that to happen, because by the time the show airs, most of the clothes will be sold out.”
As soon as an ensemble drops online, Bazalinchuk starts sourcing it for her followers. Some brands have even begun contacting her, while fellow fans have also helped identify tricky items. But does such extensive documentation damage the show’s fashion appeal? Silver thinks so. “There’s a chance that by the time the show airs, we’ll have tired of the looks already,” she said.
Weinberg agrees. “The idea of having the entire wardrobe available on Instagram before the series is even out is definitely a sign of how times have changed. It’s cool, but it also doesn’t leave much space for that sense of anticipation we used to have — the surprise of what an outfit might represent in a certain context, or for a certain storyline.”
Have ‘it’ bags been replaced by… totes?
Carrie may not have taken to Veja and Converse sneakers, but she seems to have swapped designer bags for totes.
Is the fashion-obsessed former columnist keeping it real? Is she coming to terms with being under-accessorized? Is this an environmental decision? Or, in a more calculated move, is she just signaling her identity as a public radio supporter and member of New York’s intelligentsia?
Parker sports a WNYC tote on the set of “And Just Like That…” earlier this month. Credit: Raymond Hall/GC Images/GC Images
The men seem to be wearing the same suit
From Big to Steve Brady (David Eigenberg), SATC sometimes struggled with male character development. The men generally served as narrative devices for the women’s stories — perhaps intentionally so — and their style was often two-dimensional, too.
The reboot may be no exception, which could be why every single guy on the show appears to be wearing a Paul Smith suit, according to Bazalinchuk’s @justlikethatcloset account.
Chris Noth wore a sharp blue suit on set of ‘And Just Like That’ this August. Credit: Jason Howard/Bauer-Griffin/Getty Images/GC Images
“It’s as if the men are an afterthought, again, which is definitely surprising,” said Silver. “One of the things that has really changed since this show began is that men’s fashion is much more prominent and much more creative. I would have expected something a bit different. Or at least a wider choice of resources in terms of brands.”
Another missed opportunity then — or, maybe, another stylistic decision to keep the attention on the show’s real sartorial icons.