After 20 years, “Sex and the City” continues to be the fashion gift that keeps on giving. Over the weekend, new tidbits about some of the show’s greatest designer hits emerged when Kristen Davis turned out to be the surprise guest at a fan event cohosted by The Standard Hollywood and popular Instagram account Every Outfit on Sex and the City (@everyoutfitonSATC). Since its founding by writer/director Lauren Garroni and fashion professional Chelsea Fairless two years ago, the account has found half-a-million followers who still relish dissecting everything that Carrie, Charlotte, Miranda and Samantha wore during the show’s seven seasons on HBO.
Those include Davis and Parker, who have weighed in on some of the posts. The crowd cheered as Garroni and Fairless welcomed Davis to the pool deck of the West Hollywood hotel, where parts of the popular two-part Los Angeles story arc were filmed. Davis was wearing the Prada lipstick skirt she wore on an early SATC episode, along with a sparkly pair of Sarah Jessica Parker pumps “because I wanted to have Sarah with us.”
“I had seen an ad for the skirt and called [show costume designer] Pat Field and said, “I have to have that skirt, please. I don’t care what country we have to call but I want to be wearing it when I meet Trey,” said Davis, referring to Charlotte’s first husband, played by Kyle MacLachlan. “So it stays in the closet in a very special place.”
Davis also shared behind-the-sceces dish on the black Zac Posen bridesmaid dress she wore in the first SATC film. “When I got married – I mean, when Charlotte got married – I loved the beige bridesmaid’s dresses, though not everyone did, so when Carrie got married nobody was going to be in matchy-matchy dresses. The drama in choosing the dresses went on and on. Late one night the phone rings and it’s Pat. She said, ‘I have an idea, you’ll all be wearing Zac in different colors, but you’ve got to wear black.’ So the Black Swan came about. It had to be steamed and loved after every take because it was one-of-a-kind.”
Another fan favorite was the asymetric Thierry Mugler Davis wore in the “Power Lesbian” episode. “I’m curvy so they had to steam me in and out of it. During those fittings, tears were shed,” she said.
The cast often suffered for fashion. “We would wrap at 2 a.m. they would say, ‘You have a fitting [for the next episode].’ We were not allowed to complain. We would be so tired. We’d just be naked, sitting there, and sometimes delivery people would come and we’d be too tired to put our clothes back on. We did suffer for the outfits but that’s OK.”
The panel also included SATC producer/writer Michael Patrick King and writer Jenny Bicks, who shared that many actors were asked to play themselves on the L.A. episodes. There was even an ask out to Warren Beatty.
“We were used to, at that point, having people want to be on the show, so we just assumed someone would want to come. The problem is people didn’t want to play themselves, they wanted to play a character. We had two days and we asked a lot of people, but don’t tell Mr. Beatty this,” said Bicks, who recalled King shoving her in front of Beatty when they spotted him getting into his car, to see if he’d accept the offer. “I turend to him and said, ‘Mr. Beatty, I’m mortified’ and he said, ‘Yeah never took it seriously, never gonna happen.'” They ended up with an ad-libbing Matthew McConaughey.
To cap the evening, New York-based financial services consultant Dan Clay, whose off-duty Instagram persona Carrie Dragshaw has garnered a cult following, came out to explain how he painstakingly recreated the outfits from the L.A. episodes.
“For the swimsuit Carrie wears at The Standard pool, I took two pairs of neon green tights and artfully cut and pasted them onto my body,” he said. Clay also shared how Carrie Drahgshaw came to be.
“I’d always dreamed of dressing up like Carrie Bradshaw for Halloween and 2016 just happened to be the year that I had enough courage to put on a tutu – which I had ordered from Patricia Field’s website – so I was like, ‘OK, I have to make the most of this” and I took a ton of photos with my friend. I lived on Perry Street, which is where Carrie’s apartment was.” That photo went viral, and Carrie Dragshaw was born.
He even met Parker on an episode of Andy Cohen’s show “Watch What Happens Live.” “It was amazing and she was so extravagantly kind. I’m lucky I really picked a kind person to impersonate on the internet. I could have stumbled into a real diva.”