Then and now: Carrie Bradshaw’s road to chic

Follow along as we explore the fun and fearless fashions of Carrie Bradshaw.

Carrie Bradshaw in the Carrie Diaries

Most of us have been drooling over Carrie Bradshaw’s fashion style since the very first episode of Sex and the City. Even though Carrie hasn’t always had the best luck when it comes to men, the one thing she most certainly does know is fashion.

Whether she’s rocking a crop top or a fur coat, Carrie’s daring style and fearless fashions aren’t just a costume — they’re an essential part of who she is. So how exactly did this confident, sophisticated New Yorker come to be?

The CW’s highly-anticipated show and Sex and the City prequel, The Carrie Diaries, will take a closer look at Carrie’s life before Big. Set in the mid-’80s, The Carrie Diaries begins shortly after 16-year-old Carrie loses her mother, and follows her as she makes her way from the suburbs of Connecticut to New York City for an internship. For Carrie, it was love at first sight — with Manhattan and her new life, that is.

AnnaSophia Robb as Carrie Bradshaw
AnnaSophia Robb as Carrie Bradshaw
AnnaSophia Robb as Carrie Bradshaw

Though Carrie’s love of fashion wasn’t anything new, New York City brought it to a whole new level. Suddenly, a whole new world opened up, thanks to a chance meeting with style editor friend Larissa. Follow her fashion evolution through the years as we explore the very best of Carrie Bradshaw.

Too cool for school

The Carrie Diaries

Even in the ’80s, Carrie was cool. Check out her signature “Carrie” bag, school-themed sweater (complete with pencils and grades!) and horse-covered pants. Yes, it sounds random, but somehow, Carrie makes it look fab.

Elegance, Carrie style

Scene from Sex and the City

Ms. Bradshaw knows her body, and how to show it off while still keeping it classy. She does just that with this ethereal chiffon gown by Donna Karan. Sexy, simple and oh-so-Carrie.

Single in the city

Scene from Sex and the City

Leave it to Carrie Bradshaw to make a camisole look chic. And by adding a gold nameplate necklace, she did just that.

All mixed up

Scene from Sex and the City

When most of us plan our outfit for the day, we match our shoes to our dress or our pants to our top. But not Carrie. She found a way to make textures, colors and prints coordinate in a way that the non-fashionista simply wouldn’t understand until they saw it all put together. Then, it becomes sheer perfection.

Friends make the best accessory

Scene from Sex and the City

Sure, a super-hot Vera Wang coat will make any girl feel like a million bucks. But perhaps the best lesson Carrie learned from her love affair with the City? No outfit is complete without her besties.

Grab your leg warmers and scrunchies and tune in for the series premiere of The Carrie Diaries on Monday, Jan. 14, 8 pm / 7 pm CST.

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Photo credits: Craig Blankenhorn/The CW (The Carrie Diaries), (Sex and the City)