SJP Talks ‘Sex’

Sarah Jessica Parker opens up about the TV show’s influence and her favorite fashion memories from the set:

On being the star of a show that revolutionized the fashion business:
“When people started writing about the fashion, which was not the intention of [costume designer] Pat [Field] or myself, it became more exciting simply because we had access to more. In the first two seasons, no one gave us anything. We had a $10,000 [wardrobe] budget for the whole show, for all the characters. It was only at about the end of the second season that people [started] to let us borrow things. All of a sudden, the costume shop grew from three racks to 13 racks, to ultimately hundreds of racks of clothing, hundreds of pairs of shoes, hundred of bags. There were rooms full of just vintage jewelry. There wasn’t one single day where I was cavalier or blasé about it. I was never bored of the six-hour fittings, or putting on yet another incredible dress or vintage pair of pants or shoes, or trying to figure out what bag went with what shoes.”

On late-night fittings with Pat Field:
“I worked every day, so my fittings happened after we wrapped. That was my only free time. Sometimes they would be from 1 a.m. to 6 a.m. after shooting all day. I have so many polaroids [from those times]. I would be doubled over [in laughter] wearing some crazy pant from 1979. Pat would say, ‘You have to to try it, it’s fierce! Just put it on and we’ll have [writer, director, producer] Michael [Patrick King], write a scene around the outfit.’ And he would. The dress from the Paris episode where Misha [played by Mikhail Baryshnikov] comes back to the hotel room [and I’m asleep], that was not in the script. It was a 47-pound dress with seven layers of fabric, but I said, ‘Michael, please let me wear this. I’ll sleep in it.’ He said, ‘Fine, sleep in it.’”

On her personal costume archive:
“Anything that was from a designer went back to them immediately. Anything that was bought went to my archive. If we could keep the whole outfit together, we did. So if there were earrings, a purse, cuffs, dress, underpinnings, shoes and bags, they would all be archived together.”

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