Sex and the City’s Carrie Bradshaw (played by Sarah Jessica Parker) has always been the leading source of fashion inspo for quirky, maximalist dressers. When the show concluded in 2004, however, viewers, sadly, were only able to tune into the character’s past inventive style via episode reruns. But now, thanks to the show’s reboot, entitled And Just Like That..., Carrie and her artistic outfits are back. However, it’s worth noting Carrie’s style evolution from her 30s to her 50s will, naturally, hit differently with fans. (The reboot will focus on the women in this intricate period of their lives.)
Carrie is still Carrie in that she remains loyal to certain luxury fashion houses and loves a conspicuous silhouette (yes, tutu skirts make a reappearance). But there are significant changes noticeable with her 2021 fashion that make it clear the character has evolved since 17 years ago when viewers last saw her.
Parker’s character is no longer the peppy, 30-something chasing after cosmopolitans in Downtown Manhattan — and her fashion reflects this change, too. Based off the photos circulating of Parker filming on set, her outfits in And Just Like That... feature items from affordable retailers and don’t always include a high-heeled designer shoe (which, during the original series, never seemed to be the case). Plus, her iconic “Carrie” script necklace is nowhere to be found. Apparently, it’s no longer an accessory the fashion writer considers to be a wear-everywhere staple.
Ahead, discover all the evidence, thus far, that shows the character has undergone a significant style evolution over the years. Unfortunately, the reboot has no set release date yet, but until that day comes, feel free to use the following as your doses of Carrie-centric fashion inspiration.
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Carrie Wears Fast-Fashion Labels
In early August, photos of Parker in character as Carrie while wearing a paisley maxi dress circulated rapidly throughout the internet. Fashion sleuths were quick to identify that her flowing dress was, surprisingly enough, from Forever 21. Throughout all six seasons of Sex and the City, Carrie was known for her longstanding loyalty to designer brands, so her dress from the fast-fashion brand was a notable shift.
The rest of her look, however, did tap into Carrie's known penchant for luxury (see: her Gucci x Balenciaga bag and Terry DeHavilland platform heels). Still, fans of the show couldn't help but wonder if Carrie's shopping habits in 2021 have drastically changed. Will Carrie's style in And Just Like That... include more affordable retailers? While her Forever 21 dress isn’t available, shop a few items that capture the character’s essence in her 50s, below.
Carrie Wears Tote Bags
Amongst the many products Carrie had a hand in influencing, she made an undeniable impact on handbag trends, particularly those within the luxury space. For instance, fashion consultants and trend analysts credit the columnist for popularizing Dior saddlebags in the early aughts. And to this day, Carrie remains the go-to reference when you refer to a Fendi baguette bag.
So, the above photo evidence of Carrie carrying a canvas tote bag feels new for the notorious designer purse loyalist. But, like her affordable Forever 21 dress, Carrie introducing the laid-back farmer’s market staple into her 2021 purse collection confirms the character’s fashion is pivoting into a more fuss-free direction in the new show.
Carrie Wears Socks & Sandals
Carrie’s footwear on Sex and the City was famously high-end and high-heeled. In fact, when the character gets robbed at gunpoint in Season 3, it’s her beloved Manolo Blahnik heels that are her most pressing concern as opposed to, you know, her life. “Please, sir, they’re my favorite pair! I got them half price at a sample sale,” Carrie pleaded with her assailant during the episode. Ultimately, her begging was to no avail because he ran off with her strappy sandals and didn’t look back.
In And Just Like That..., however, it appears Carrie’s footwear priorities have slightly shifted. On at least one occasion (shown above), she’s swapped her designer shoes for a down-to-earth and polarizing footwear look: socks and sandals. Above, Carrie wears a pair of Birkenstock flats with Free People’s ribbed, pom-pom socks for a super dressed-down look that’s quite a departure from her signature formal designer footwear.
Carrie Retired Her “Carrie” Necklace
Carrie was seldom without her iconic "Carrie" necklace (except for when she accidentally lost the piece, only to find it shortly afterward tucked inside the lining of her vintage Dior purse). The jewelry item became a breakout trend in the show, with an undeniable influence on pop culture and fashion. (It’s crucial to note, too, that the fictional character was not the first to wear the jewelry style. Nameplate accessories have historical roots in Black and Latinx culture — particularly during the early '90s — and the look can take on many forms, from delicate necklaces to hoop earrings.)
In her series, however, it appears Carrie’s "Carrie" necklace is no longer a wear-everyday staple for the fashion journalist in her 50s. In a photo of Parker on set taken earlier this summer, Carrie’s beloved necklace was nowhere to be found. Instead, she accessorized with Marlo Laz's Mini Squash Blossom Collar and a pendant necklace in the shape of New York state.
Carrie Styles Her Tutu Skirt Differently
In the opening credits of Sex and the City, Carrie twirls around the sidewalks of Manhattan while wearing a white, tiered tutu mini skirt. Over time, her ballerina-inspired garment from the show’s intro became emblematic of the fashion writer, popping up regularly throughout the six seasons of the series. It appears a voluminous tulle skirt remains a part of Carrie’s wardrobe in her 50s, only now she styles the piece quite differently.
As opposed to pairing the statement piece with fresh-off-the-runway goods (as she was one to do with her outfits), Carrie is pairing the tutu skirt with pieces already existing in her wardrobe. In late August, Parker, in character as Carrie, wore a tutu skirt with a purple sequined Fendi bag and a pair of white Chanel white booties — two pieces that were crucial to her closet in her 30s. The baguette style bag is a signature for Carrie and she wore the crisp booties from the French fashion house throughout the sixth season.