While Sex and the City has been off the air for some time now, its popularity has endured. The recent release of the Sex and the City movie is only one indicator of this, and is, in many ways, the most minor. Where Sex and the City has truly endured is its influence on fashion and the way it has demanded that young women view style as a constant, ubiquitous challenge.
The clothes — like the apartments — on Sex in the City were often ridiculously expensive and certainly beyond the means of many of the characters in the early seasons of the show before they had found success. But our heroines, brilliantly styled by long-time New York designer Patricia field, were resourceful shoppers who knew the value of a few outrageous or classic pieces to a wardrobe.
For example, Carrie taught us a trench coat can make any outfit sing, especially when belted tightly and mixed with something fun. Carrie’s clothes are all about using conventional bits
of style to be entirely playful.
Meanwhile, Samantha said it all with bright colors plunging necklines and an unmistakable love for her shape. Samantha taught us that dressing for our own enjoyment was a sure way to wow others and that being the center of attention required confidence as much as skin and Samantha showed us plenty of both.
Charlotte, on the other hand, reminds us we don’t have to be outrageous to be fashionable. She made preppy cute and interesting again, pairing pale colors with khakis and pearls. Instead of being bland, her pretty look was so completely well-executed that Sex and the City made preppy an aspirational style again.
Finally, Miranda’s fashion stood up for quirky women in corporate jobs and reminded us that the definition of sexy is up to us. With short hair and a sometimes androgynous look,
Miranda made corporate clothes interesting but never played by the rules all the time.
Without the fashion sense of Sex and the City, we’d have missed out on the madness for “It bags,” giant flower pins, the highest heels worn with absolutely everything and the belief
that high fashion can be, and maybe should be, every day.