Sex and the City: What Charlotte and Carrie Really Taught Me

(Last Updated On: January 9, 2019)

Scripted television shows are not only for the purpose of entertainment. As most of these shows mirror contemporary life, they tend to evolve as an extension of our life stories. The intertwining narratives in various ways can reflect our life struggles and milestones,  while the characters can turn out to be so relatable that they even become our source of inspirations. Sometimes, these shows also serve as our creative board for our daily ensembles. After all, styles on screens have the tendencies to imitate or forecast and set fashion trends much like runway shows.

This month, I will be looking back at some of my all-time favorite TV series to take inspiration from their stories and of course, their choice of style—starting today with Sex and the City.

Sex and the City may have been one of those TV series concerned with the superficial, but we have to admit that for some of those who went through their formative years between 1998 to 2004, myself included, it was a source of lessons for love, friendship and life. Although, it can further be argued that the show did left us with a legacy that goes well beyond those years.

For instance, Samantha may not be the friend you share your beliefs and values with but her uncensored wisdom is what you need when you can’t put yourself together, and the androgynous lawyer Miranda who is a realist made us love our success without apologizing for it. While the Park Avenue princess Charlotte and writer turned fashion-icon Carrie are the ones who made us embrace our mistakes so that we learn from them.

Not to discredit Samantha and Miranda at all (I love them sincerely),  but of this dynamic foursome, Charlotte and Carrie both made the lasting impact on me. Aside from their stylish decadence, somehow their characters became my constant reminder of several enduring truths about womanhood. They provided a glaring filter on how women undergoes a certain trajectory when intending to participate in the public sphere, which according to Dubermann of Huffpost evolves from taboo to privilege, from privilege to right, and from right to obligation.

Considering that over the years, their stories have to some extent become ours, two kinds of Charlotte and Carrie fans came to being. Those who religiously follow their foot steps and those who learn from their mistakes. The former enact the screen stories of Charlotte and Carrie in real life, while the latter armed themselves with harsh lessons about money, men, and career. I would like to believe that I belong to the latter.

Here are the key lessons I’ve learned from Charlotte and Carrie:

FASHION
As you age, your style becomes a reflection of your perceived beauty and quality life.

MONEY
Whether you come from a privileged status or in the process of navigating the social hierarchy, it is important that before you buy a pair of Manolo Blahnik, you are well able to financially take care of yourself.

CAREER
Building your career is a lot of work. Your best response is patience.
Remember that the so-called journey of success is filled with win-or-lose encounters. When working for a company who usually have their pre-existing brand and overarching goals, sometimes you will have to put your personal agenda on the back burner and be malleable enough to reach a compromise. You will have to choose your battles. You will have to prevent yourself from barking up the wrong tree. And in the process, you will also have to start accepting that you will lose some people who doesn’t want to be in your life. You will have to respect their decision. Because truth be told, it’s okay to be alone.

LOVE
It’s sexier when women increases their value by mastering the act of ‘I’m desirable’ without appearing easy or out of control.

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Charlotte inspired look

Meg Dress, PaylessShoeSource Heels, Newlook Clutch Bag

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Carrie inspired look (Season 5)

Newlook dress and clutch bag, Zara jacket, PaylessShoesSource heels

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