Shoes matter to Carrie Bradshaw. She spent the extent of Sex and the City frolicking about Manhattan in her fabulous footwear, and when robbed at gunpoint in an episode, she said, “Please, sir, you can take my Fendi Baguette, you can take my ring and watch, but you can’t take my Manolo Blahniks!” (He still took her stilettos.) In the spinoff, And Just Like That..., little has changed. Carrie, played by Sarah Jessica Parker, loves to wear fanciful footwear and they’re not designed by any of the usual suspects. Rather, the (faux) shoe label is called Duchessa Gardini and Parker is the designer behind it.
One style, in particular, has been circulating on the internet: a pair of cutout boots in blue suede. The And Just Like That... actor posed in them while standing in front of a local tailor on a filming day and shared the photo to her Instagram grid. “Carrie’s version of blue suede shoes. X, SJ,” Parker wrote in the caption.
In a February interview with Vogue, Parker revealed that she initially never had any intention of designing for the show. (Her own eponymous footwear label has been active since 2014.) “There is no SJP collection in Carrie’s world; I don’t exist there because that would be too weird for me,” Parker said. “I didn’t want it to look like I was exploiting a business opportunity and HBO either, but as we were approaching my first fitting in May of last year, it became clear that there were still some holes Molly [Rogers] and David [Hyman] wanted to fill in terms of the accessories.”
Eventually, Parker and her late business partner, George Malkemus (the same person who helped to launch Manolo Blahnik in the United States), came up with a persona and brand — Duchessa Gardini — to whom they could attribute their designs. “We were thinking of an old Italian house. Our shoes are all handmade in Italy by third- and fourth-generation shoemakers, so it’s possible that you could have had a brand like this,” she said to Vogue. “If it were any other show, that might not matter, but here the provenance of a shoe matters. People are curious whether the shoes are from the turn of the century or fresh off the runways of Paris.”
The Duchessa Gardini shoes fit perfectly with Carrie’s eclectic wardrobe, which has always balanced classic and quirky fashion throughout the various phases of her life. And the show’s biggest fans should be pleased to know that several of the styles made for the show (but not the aforementioned blue suede boots) are currently available on the SJP by Sarah Jessica Parker website. See and shop them below, then slip them on for a night out in a cobblestone-filled neighborhood, where you can perhaps do your best Bradshaw impression.