And Just Like That… the City is Sexy Again

The reboot of cult TV series Sex and the City has begun shooting and the internet is awash with first looks of Sarah Jessica Parker, Cynthia Nixon and Kristin Davis as they reprise their iconic characters.

It’s nearly back! For fans of Sex and the City, It’s been a long wait. The last episode of its sixth series aired in February 2004. 

Any analysis of the way we dressed in the late 1990s and early 2000s is incomplete without consideration of the impact of HBO’s Sex and The City, first screened in 1998. The situational comedy, based on Candace Bushnell’s anthology of newspaper columns of the same name, quickly became a fashion playbook for a generation. It’s been rated one of the most fashionable TV shows of all-time, thanks to an extensive designer wardrobe curated by costume designer Patricia Field – who also designed for arguably fashion’s favourite movie, The Devil Wears Prada.

The reboot has a title, And Just Like That…, and paparazzi shots are already leaking from the set. Scheduled to be released on HBO Max late this year, the show has an updated wardrobe that represents a real challenge for costume designer Molly Rogers. 

The style progression of the show’s iconic characters is the talk of fashion social media. Indeed, fashion enthusiasts and die-hard fans of the show alike have already spent years imagining what their favourite characters would wear now. 

The good news: Carrie, Charlotte and Miranda are all coming back. Carrie Bradshaw, played by Sarah Jessica Parker, is the character who turned tulle tutus, personalised handbags and lingerie as outerwear into wardrobe staples.

The absence of Kim Cattrall as sex positive, adventurous Samantha, complete with audacious outfits, is a big miss. Cattrall fell out badly with her co-stars and turned down the opportunity to reprise the role. Samantha’s one liners became iconic – “I am fifty-fucking-two and I will rock this dress! Her confidence was unparalleled, mirrored in figure-hugging pantsuits, sparkly mini-dresses with plunging necklines, always accentuated by eye-catching accessories

Instagram account @JustLikeThatCloset is chronicling outfits from the set, linking viewers to where they can shop the looks. We’ve already had our first look of grown-up Lily Goldenblatt, Charlotte’s first daughter, in an altered Oscar de la Renta floral-appliqué halter-neck dress and Loeffler Randall “Camellia” bow heel sandals. 

The account’s handler Victoria Bazalinchuk, 23, has been busy. “I knew the rush around SATC fashion and how we all had to wait until we got to know what the ladies wore,” she says. “I didn’t want to make people have to wait because by the time the show airs, most of the clothes the women are wearing will be sold out. I really want to help people who are just as obsessed with the show’s fashion as I am.”

Bazalinchuk plans to continue posting throughout. As long as the show exists, you may be sure the account is active,” she insists. “I’m sure there will be lots of outfits that don’t make it into streets and pictures and I’m really looking forward to seeing these.”

Fashion influencer and personal stylist Amanda Murray has expressed concerns on Instagram Stories about the style progression of the characters. The styling isn’t reflective of the style identities carefully constructed in the original series, she says. “I need them to get it together and do comprehensive research on who this woman is. Charlotte York-Goldenblatt [played by Kristin Davis] isn’t wearing a Fendi recycled plastic tote with an Emilia Wickstead dress. Replace the Fendi tote with a Mark Cross box or Benchley bag or Gabriela Hearst Nina bag.” On a more positive note, she’s pleased to see Charlotte is wearing Emilia Wickstead. “And she’s buying cashmere knits from The Row… wearing a few pieces from Prada [as well as] Brunello and Ralph with a bit of Etro.”

By contrast, Victoria Bazalinchuk @justlikethatcloset prefers to restrict her Instagram posts to helping fans shop the looks, while keeping her opinions to herself. She says,I don’t want to influence anybody’s opinion and prefer to stay objective. Of course, there are outfits I like less and the ones I like more but I’m not trying to rate the looks. That’s not what I came here for.

Plenty of show fans are less reticent. One fan took to Twitter to vent about Charlotte in a Stella McCartney puff sleeve top and Balenciaga pleated polka-dot midi skirt paired with Manolo Blahnik ‘’BB’’ pumps and Rianna and Nina ‘’Treasure’’ box bag. “Why does the costumer detest Charlotte so much? I’m wearing this exact look to go grape stomping in San Gimignano next week. #freecharlotte.” On the other hand, we don’t know the script – maybe Charlotte is going grape stomping?

Another SATC fan adds, “It looks like they’re correcting all the fashion wrongs committed against Miranda the first go around. Miranda [played by Cynthia Nixon] has been looking amazing in pictures from #andjustlikethat”. An image of Miranda in a Maroon jumpsuit suggests that she still rocks a monochromatic look. Her new wardrobe looks more streamlined and well fitted outfit – it seems new Miranda has come into her own. And we love that for her.

While opinions may be polarising, the general consensus is excitement at the return of our old friends. That includes the baguette bag which has been seen on the set of And Just Like That… The current enthusiasm for Y2K trends could not be better timed for the SATC reboot, inspiring our collective nostalgia. 

We’re also excited to make new fashion friends. As Carrie once wisely said, “They say nothing lasts forever. Dreams change, trends come and go, but friendships never go out of style’’. Bring it on, please, HBO – as quickly as possible.

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