The secrets and techniques behind the loopy costumes on ‘And Simply Like That …’

Maybe the humblest pest within the cosmopolitan animal kingdom, the pigeon acquired an surprising high-fashion glow-up when it appeared as a 3D-printed purse in Jonathan Anderson’s Fall 2022 JW Anderson menswear assortment, changing into an surprising sleeper it-bag when it appeared in shops final fall for $890.

However it wasn’t till paparazzi pictures from the set of “And Simply Like That …” confirmed it within the fingers of Carrie Bradshaw — the “Intercourse and the Metropolis” heroine performed throughout two movies and two TV collection by Sarah Jessica Parker — that it turned a bona fide hit. The Minimize, Harper’s Bazaar, CNN and a number of TikTokers anointed what Vogue referred to as “the cult kooky bag” as the best purse of the 12 months.

Costume designer Molly Rogers, who oversees the wardrobe for “And Simply Like That …” together with Danny Santiago, was tipped off to the bag by the director of a documentary chronicling the reboot’s first season. “I believed, ‘That’s old-school “Intercourse-and-the-Metropolis”go-viral,’” Rogers stated. “GET IT.”

The bag bought out nearly immediately when followers noticed Parker carrying it, with followers pressured to hitch a waitlist to purchase one. (It’s now back in stock on the model’s web site.)

Twenty-five years after “Intercourse and the Metropolis” debuted, the sexual politics of Carrie, Charlotte and Miranda could not be innovative. (Kim Cattrall, who portrayed Samantha, initially declined to hitch “AJLT” however will seem in an episode later this season). However the universe’s clothes stays an object of fascination and a launchpad for unlikely tendencies, similar to pigeon baggage, puffer gowns and house dresses.

In an period when ridiculous garments barely warrant a raised eyebrow, the franchise has by some means managed to make its wardrobe right into a supply of humor, curiosity and infrequently consternation for viewers and the web at giant.

When the reboot launched in 2021, Patricia Area, the unique costume designer for “Intercourse and the Metropolis,” was already engaged on “Emily in Paris,” so Rogers, a Area protégé, stepped in to hold the torch.

“The becoming room on that present has all the time been a enjoyable, artistic, secure place the place the surface world doesn’t actually intervene with what we’re making an attempt to do,” Rogers stated. “That freedom is uncommon on this world due to all of the judgments.”

“And Simply Like That …” debuted on HBO Max (now Max) as a “new chapter” within the “Intercourse and the Metropolis” prolonged universe. However earlier than a single episode aired, social media customers had been dissecting the costumes. The Instagram account @justlikethatcloset, with greater than 120,000 followers, identifies the items on the present, usually months earlier than episodes air, utilizing paparazzi photographs and screenshots. Related accounts, similar to @findingcarriescloset and, most famously, Chelsea Fairless and Lauren Garroni’s @everyoutfitonsatc, do the identical for the unique TV collection.

Rogers is aware of followers are watching — even earlier than the present airs.

“I get mad when we now have to go exterior and do a New York exterior,” Rogers stated, “as a result of I wish to hold every part underground, so while you’re anticipating an episode, you don’t really feel such as you’ve seen all of it.”

“The second somebody walks out of the trailer,” Santiago stated, “there’s 4 or 5 paparazzi taking photos, and inside 20 minutes, it’s already posted on-line.”

They don’t plan for the outfits to be stunning. “It simply appears to occur naturally,” Rogers stated.

After all, this was all the time the present’s remit. Area, Rogers stated, “all the time stated that this present could be a transferring style journal.” Her mixture of runway and classic clothes helped begin tendencies similar to seen bra straps and Manolo Blahnik sneakers, plus purses, similar to Fendi’s Baguette and Dior’s Saddle Bag, that proceed to be bestsellers.

“I believe, total, the look of [‘Sex and the City’] was very fashionable, very escapist, very exuberant,” stated Fairless, whose Each Outfit empire with Garroni consists of a popular podcast of the identical title. “I really like that Patricia Area satisfied Center America that the ladies in New York are sporting stunning lime and fuchsia out on the streets.”

Spurred by paparazzi tradition and nostalgia-fueled terminally on-line millennials and zoomers, the garments appear to have entered a brand new period of newsworthiness.

They’ve all the time been plot factors — most famously, Carrie realizes she has no financial savings to stay in her condominium when it converts from rental to co-op, after having spent greater than $30,000 on sneakers — however they’re simply as usually dialog starters after they seem on-screen with little or no commentary.

On the official podcast for “And Simply Like That …,” hosted by govt producer Michael Patrick King, he and the writers gloat about their style wins, similar to the looks of Loewe’s viral balloon sneakers when Carrie goes on a Bergdorf procuring spree and Lisa Todd Wexley’s customized Valentino robe and feathered headpiece. At the same time as style manufacturers embrace tv, the appearances of such recognizably insider items is uncommon.

For a lot of “SATC” followers (and longtime skeptics), that concentrate on style is what makes the present objectionably materialist, and what impressed many followers to object to the 2 function movies, launched in 2008 and 2010.

However the ingenious frivolity of earlier seasons of “SATC” is what stays the present’s style legacy.

“There’s this golden period, in Season 3 and 4, the place it’s the right mixture,” Garroni stated. “They’re beginning to get entry to clothes that’s on the runway, however they’re not so overloaded with style choices, [and] there’s nonetheless a component of realism within the sense that Carrie will re-wear a Fendi Baguette a few occasions over a season.”

When the present acquired larger and Area began to include items similar to an alleged $80,000 Versace couture robe, it appeared to prioritize showstopping garments on the expense of realism. The stability between luxurious and bargain-bin fashion that made the sooner seasons so successful disappeared.

It could be that the present’s true legacy is much less about igniting tendencies than persuading viewers to embrace real style weirdness. The seems to be that appear to seize consideration extra not too long ago usually are not the apparent ones, similar to fantastical couture robes and head-to-toe runway ensembles, however the ones that appear nearly like a style dare, similar to a gala get-up that Garroni and Fairless deemed “horny equestrian rubber fetishist” or a Balenciaga-Gucci mash-up purse that Carrie utilized in “AJLT’s” first season. Followers additionally eagerly anticipate the return of earlier seems to be, similar to Carrie’s repurposed Vivienne Westwood marriage ceremony robe, which initially appeared within the first movie. Garroni calls such reappearances “our Easter eggs.”

And for youthful viewers, the fashion that Area pioneered and that Rogers continues to champion is nearly like a Gen Z style bible: label-savvy, impractical and by some means all the time a bit DIY. On TikTok, Carrie stays an icon, with customers re-creating items similar to her green bustled miniskirt with white button-up and her newspaper print Dior dress. A number of movies have posited considered one of Carrie’s most weird ensembles because the summer season uniform of 2023: a sheer peasant top with track shorts and heels. One other viral pattern has women in absurd outfits walking across the street with balletic kookiness, as Carrie does within the unique collection’s opening credit.

Nonetheless, when costume designers are wanting to signify actuality in scripted tv, with the garments of “Succession” and “The White Lotus” incomes broad reward for his or her nearly documentarian strategy, “And Simply Like That …” could appear to signify style fantasy run amok.

What makes the costumes so wealthy is their method-like design course of. Parker, Rogers and Santiago often spend more than eight hours in costume fittings. Parker has an nearly monastic devotion to the persona of her character: At one level, Rogers recalled, she reached for a winter bathrobe that was pulled for an inside scene and determined she needed Carrie to put on it on the road.

“Carrie is a personality, however Carrie is a New Yorker,” Rogers stated. “We all the time attempt to mirror on that individual: Who’s that New York woman, and the way does she turn into plausible?” For this season, that meant incorporating extra books for subway studying and sweatshirts and tote baggage with the names of New York newspapers and artists.

This obsessive wardrobing methodology is much like the strategy Jeremy Robust took in enjoying Kendall Roy on “Succession” — incorporating his personal understanding of Loro Piana into the character’s look, working with costume designer Michelle Matland.

It’s a follow Robust borrowed from his idol Daniel Day-Lewis, who, for instance, partnered carefully with the costume designer Mark Bridges for “Phantom Thread,” dressing himself by going into his character’s actual closet and emerging in whatever felt right for the scene.

In reality, a few of the second season’s strangest fashion decisions are Parker’s personal, similar to a peculiar manner of tucking her necklace off to the facet, into her bra strap. “That’s her little quirk,” Santiago stated. “She does that in actual life.” A tote bag coated in pink tape with the names of Democratic candidates working for election final fall was another viral moment whereas the present was filming, however was in actual fact Parker’s creation.

Maybe what makes the present indelible is that the garments have a manner of wanting by some means timeless, even when they aren’t “basic” within the regular sense of the time period. What seemed outrageous in 2002 seems to be simply as outrageous right this moment, even when there are extra followers eagerly replicating the seems to be. Pigeons, in any case, by no means exit of fashion.


A earlier model of this text incorrectly said when “Intercourse and the Metropolis 2” got here out. This model has been corrected.

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