How ‘Sex and the City’ changed the way we dress

Sex and the City goes down in history as one of the most fashionable television programmes of all time. Almost 20 years after it arrived on our screens, we reflect on all the ways it served as sartorial inspiration, and how it continues to make its presence felt on the catwalk today. 

1. Carrie’s Ballerina Skirts

carrie tulle3

No scene is more iconic in the history of Sex and the City than the opening credits, which see Carrie walking around the streets of New York in a tulle tutu. A similar skirt was recreated in the final episode of the series and in the first film, cementing it as one of her trademarks.

How is it relevant nowadays? After using it often at Valentino, Maria Grazia Chiuri brought tulle back in a big way in her first collection for Dior – and the frocks went on to be worn by some of the world’s most famous red-carpet stars, including Jennifer Lawrence and Bella Hadid. Its fairy-tale vibes have also been favoured by Calvin Klein of late, who made this beautiful ballerina dress for Nicole Kidman in Cannes. Carrie would have been so proud.


2. Charlotte’s Penchant For Pink

charlotte alia collage3

Thought you got there first, millennials? Think again. The Upper East Side princess Charlotte York was wearing top-to-toe pink decades before you. From this candy-hued Roland Mouret two-piece to shades of fuchsia and salmon, she had the style nailed down long before anyone else.

3. Miranda’s Crop

miranda collage

It’s the haircut of the summer, but before Cara Delevingne, Kristen Stewart and Ruth Bell, there was Miranda Hobbes and her cropped ‘do. While she certainly didn’t invent it, her commitment to the hairstyle remained for most of the lawyer’s time on-screen and her fiery red crop would sit right at home on any 2017 catwalk.

4. Samantha’s Suiting

smantha suit collage

Never has Samantha Jones’ no-bullshit approach to life, business and fashion been more timely than in 2017, which might explain why her vein of power suiting can be seen all over the runways. Look to Rita Ora, Cara Delevingne and (of course) Hillary Clinton for A-list examples, or designers such as Gucci and Paul Smith to channel your inner Samantha. 

5. Carrie’s Namesake Necklace

necklace collage2

On this day and age, we have everything from our phone cases to our knitwear and our water bottles personalised, but that wasn’t always the way. Bought from a flea market for “practically nothing”, Carrie’s namesake necklace taught us that a little bit of individuality goes a long way.

6. Samantha’s Colour Blocking

samantha colorblock collage

Red and pink might make for 2017’s perfect pairing, but our new penchant for extremely bold colour blocking was already one of Samantha Jones’ most noteworthy style signatures back in the Nineties. Blue and red? Yellow and black? Pink and orange? Not a problem for the PR mogul. In fact, we could see her in pretty much all of Balenciaga’s extravagant S/S 17 collection.

7. Carrie’s Vintage Fur

 carrie fur collage

While the tutu remains Carrie’s stand-out garment, her fur coat is surely the most prevalent piece of fashion from the show. Worn from the pilot into the last episode (even making an appearance in the first film), her vintage fur saw her through many a fashion conundrum, paired with everything from evening dresses to pyjamas, worn to parties and even a baseball game.

Although the attitude to fur may have shifted, designers like Simone Rocha have found ways to reinvent the classic for the 21st century in a cruelty-free way that remains just as chic.

8. Manolos, Manolos, Manolos

manolo collage

It’s hard to deny Carrie Bradshaw’s impact on helping Manolo Blahnik become a household name or her ability to make his shoes instantly recognisable, no more so than the blue, satin, crystal-embellished court shoes that she wore to get married. They launched many a copycat design and are still being worn by the coolest street-style stars to this day.


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