Sarah Jessica Parker talks style, ageing and motherhood

The actress opens up about designing for children and why growing older is freeing.

Alexi Lubomirski

Her famous alter-ego Carrie Bradshaw might have been known for her aspirational wardrobe, but Sarah Jessica Parker’s latest design project is all about comfort and practicality.

For her second collection for Gap Kids, the actress said her own three children (James Wilkie, 15, and twins Tabitha and Loretta, 9) played a role in the results. She created the range with the idea of hand-me-downs in mind, something that was a family tradition when Parker was growing up.

“As a parent of three uniquely different people, I know they have different needs, so it was exciting to think of a way of addressing all of that,” she told us. “A lot of the people at Gap design have children, so they too were bringing that information from parenting and getting their kids dressed and out the door.

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“We were thinking practicality and comfort; what feels soft and good; what feels stylish but not trendy; how to take this idea of wear, love and hand-me-downs and applying that to pieces for style,” she added. “There were a lot of interesting things to consider and I feel that we addressed a lot of it.”

Ahead of the launch of the collection online and in stores on 27 August, Parker talks more generally about fashion, success, friendship and what she’s learnt about growing older.

There is a difference between fashion and style

“Style is what the individual brings. More often than not, we are drawn to people because they have personal style. Fashion is what is offered to the consumer. Style is what you make of it.”

Motherhood has changed the way I dress

“Just getting out the door with kids… Practicality really dominates now. Winter, cold mornings, rain, snow… I mean if I didn’t have children and my mornings were not as they are now, I would be making different choices. It doesn’t dominate all my wardrobe decisions, but definitely those early morning hours.”

I will never share style advice

“I don’t shop a lot and I’ve never been one to tell women what to wear. I’m not going to tell people ‘this is the dress’, or ‘this is the bag’. What’s exciting about being a woman is having choices and those choices should be her own. She is best equipped to make those decisions, not me telling her.”

Growing older is freeing

“I make choices that make me feel comfortable and try not to worry too much about what other people think. I care less about other people’s opinions. I wear clothes that make me feel like myself.”

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My on-screen characters haven’t influenced my style

“If they have, it’s in ways that I’m not aware of. Mostly, I purposefully play people who are very, very different to me and I’m excited about how differently they dress, look and behave. I love being part of those conversations and I love working with the designers. They allow me to see people differently.”

My take on female friendship remains the same

“I haven’t learnt anything new about female relationships. I’m a grown woman. They’re necessary and important.”

Success means having choices

“Having choices plays a big part in feeling like you have control, both professionally and personally. I would want to have the same experiences that I’ve had, both disappointing and triumphant. I’ve learnt from it all and I wouldn’t change a thing.”

From: Harper’s BAZAAR UK

SARAH JESSICA PARKER STYLE FILE

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Where? The New York City Ballet Fall Gala, September 2014. Wearing: Mary Katrantzou

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Where? The amFAR New York Gala, June 2014. Wearing: Schiaparelli couture

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Where? The 'Charles James: Beyond Fashion' Met Ball, May 2014. Wearing: Oscar de la Renta

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Where? The New York City Ballet Fall Gala, September 2013. Wearing: Prabal Gurung bustier and Olivier Theyskens skirt

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Where? The Serpentine Gallery summer party, June 2013. Wearing: Naeem Khan

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Where? The London premiere of the Charlie and the Chocolate Factory musical, June 2013. Wearing: A Marc Jacobs dress with a Fendi bag and Manolo Blahnik heels.

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Where? The 'Punk: Chaos to Couture' Met Ball, May 2013. Wearing: A Giles Deacon gown with a Philip Treacy headpiece and Christian Louboutin boots

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Where? The Louis Vuitton autumn/winter 2012 show in Paris. Wearing: Louis Vuitton

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Where? The amFAR New York Gala, February 2012. Wearing: An Oscar de la Renta dress and a black leather jacket

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Where? The Unicef Snowflake ball, November 2011. Wearing: Louis Vuitton

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Where? Moscow premiere of I Don't Know How She Does It, August 2011. Wearing: Giambattista Valli couture

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Where? The New York premiere of Sex and the City 2, May 2010. Wearing: Valentino couture

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Where? The London premiere of Sex and the City 2, May 2010. Wearing: Alexander McQueen dress and Philip Treacy fascinator

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Where? The 2010 Oscars, wearing Chanel

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Where? The 2009 Oscars. Wearing Christian Dior couture

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Where: The New York premiere of Sex and the City, May 2008 Wearing: Nina Ricci

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Where? The London premiere of Sex and The City, May 2008. Wearing Alexander McQueen dress with Philip Treacy fascinator

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Where: The 2004 Emmy Awards. Wearing: A sheer strapless dress

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Where? The 2003 Emmy Awards. Wearing: Chanel Couture

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Where? The 2000 Golden Globes. Wearing: Richard Tyler

 

From: Harper’s BAZAAR UK

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