Sex and the City Costume Designer Patricia Field Reveals Fashion Regret From the Show

Sex and the City costume designer Patrica Field recalled the fashion moment she regretted from the hit HBO series. And her answer just might surprise you.

By Alyssa Morin Feb 08, 2023 6:50 PMTags
Watch: "Sex and the City" Cast 21 Years Ago: Live From E! Rewind

Patricia Field couldn't help but wonder did she make a fashion mistake.

The Sex and the City costume designer is the mastermind behind many iconic looks from the hit HBO series, including the famous tulle tutu skirt and tank top Carrie Bradshaw (Sarah Jessica Parker), wears in the opening credits.

But there's one fashion moment that haunts Patricia, recalling John Corbett, who played Aidan Shaw, being adamant about accessorizing his looks with turquoise jewelry.

"He had just done some sapless show and he wanted to repeat the look," Patricia told The Guardian in an interview published Feb. 7 about the actor's necklaces. "I was like, OK, this is gonna be tricky."

And while the 81-year-old stylist admitted she wasn't a fan of Aidan's western-inspired attire either, she recently detailed to The Daily Mail why it was more exciting to dress the women on the show.

Everything We Know About And Just Like That... Season 2

"This was going to be an honest exploration of adult female sexual relationships, and the fashion had to reflect that sort of open-mindedness," she told the outlet in a Feb. 5 interview. "None of the characters were stereotypes of women along the slut/prude spectrum, but instead were juggling a complex mix of careers, sexual desires and real friendships."

Hbo/Darren Star Productions/Kobal/Shutterstock

For example, when it came to dressing Kim Cattrall as the provocative Samantha Jones, Patricia played up her allure without it being cliché.

"I understood that her role was 'the sex one,' but I didn't want her to be the cheap sex one," the stylist noted. "Instead, I dressed her in elegant stretch fabrics from the designer Georgio di Sant' Angelo. I put her in clothes so soft and supple you wanted to reach through the TV screen to touch her."

Patricia added, "Sometimes she was a goddess in metallics, a bright, shiny and reflective object of desire."

Not every fashion decision was easy, as the costume designer initially struggled to get Kristin Davis, who played Charlotte York, out of her comfort zone.

"With Kristin Davis, the issue was her love of A-line skirts," Patricia explained. "I fought her over them. 'You have a fabulous figure!' I told her. 'We have to show it off.'"

As she put it, "I practically had to pry the Ralph Lauren sweater sets from her hands to get some tailored Prada on her."

Bruce Glikas/WireImage

All in all, Sex and the City has become a master class on the art of dressing. 

"What we didn't know at the start of pulling together these outfits for season one was how hugely important SATC would become to the fashion world," Patricia shared. "And the fashion world had no idea what was about to hit it."

Keep scrolling to relive all of the best fashion moments from the series.

Feeling the Blues

One of the first pieces Carrie (Sarah Jessica Parker) rewore in And Just Like That...'s premiere was also one of her most infamous accessories: Her wedding shoes a.k.a. the Manolo Blahnik silk Hangisi royal blue stilettos. Alas, they took on a much more bittersweet meaning after Carrie kicked them off in the shower as she cradled a dying Big (Chris Noth).

"It was something that really played through with the storyline," the show's co-costume designer Danny Santiago previously explained to E! News. "We felt like it brings it full circle as far as the longevity of that shoe and to sort of kiss it goodbye in this way."

Feeling the Blues, Part Two

In the same somber scene, Carrie wears another something old and blue, which is the flower pin on her jacket. But the wardrobe team made the decision to make a small tweak to the brooch, Santiago revealed, "because of what plays out, we had to dye the petals in the silk. But the one she's wearing in the scene is the actual archive flower that she has."

The Roger Belt

Carrie's black studded piece became one of the 2008 movie's breakout stars and originally came from Santiago's thrifted collection, though he gifted it to Parker after filming wrapped. And when it came to including archival items in the reboot, the costume department gave credit to their leading lady for holding onto almost all of the clothes she wore throughout the series' run, as well as the two movies.

"We were so lucky that Sarah Jessica has an archive of almost everything," Santiago said. "She kept all of these beautiful pieces that people have so much love for. These pieces were so important they played such important roles in the show and the movies. The fans love these things. They are like characters in the movie and the fact that she has them, we thought, what a great way to bring them back out again? That people are going to be able to see and appreciate it and love it and pick out."

The Fendi Purse

The purple sequined number—which first made its debut in Fendi's Fall/Winter 1999-2000 collection and then in the original series when Carrie was mugged in SoHo, famously shouting at the thief, "It's a Baguette!"—made its comeback in episode three. Carrie broke out one of her most notable accessories when she and the girls went to see Che (Sara Ramirez) at their comedy show. She then reuses the bag when she goes out with Seema (Sarita Choudhury) in episode nine. 

The Eiffel Tower Bag

The Timmy Woods accessory, which made its debut in the first movie, felt like an appropriate item to reuse when Carrie returned to Paris in the And Just Like That... season one finale to scatter Big's ashes.

Tulle For Days

Carrie wore this stunning Versace "mille feuille" gown in Sex and the City's final season, though, as she wistfully noted in And Just Like That..., she never got the chance to wear it in public. 

"Once in Paris and once here, just for fun," she told Seema. "I sat at that window and ate a whole thing of Jiffy Pop." Eating popcorn alone in your NYC apartment while wearing an $80,000 dress? That sounds like our Carrie!

The Wedding Dress

In a picture from the set of the second season that quickly went viral, Parker was seen rewearing Carrie' iconic Vivienne Westwood gown from her failed wedding to Big in the 2008 movie—complete with an homage to the infamous blue bird she wore as a headpiece.

Could this be a dream sequence? A flashback? We can't help but wonder...