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Posts Tagged ‘Television’

There is no escaping it.

If you are going to do an exhibit on costume designer and Greenwich Village retailer Patricia Field, you are going to have to talk about Carrie Bradshaw, the character brought to life by Sarah Jessica Parker in HBO’s Sex and the City. No matter what level of research you may conduct on Ms. Field, from a light Google search to a deep dive into the archives of The New York Times, SATC and Carrie Bradshaw are never far behind, and understandably so. One of the most important reasons Carrie, and her friends, were so inspirational to viewers of the show was due in part to their unique style of dress—envisioned and realized by lead stylist Patricia Field from 2000 (the series’ third season) to the end of the show in 2004. While my exhibit will share in-depth thoughts on the “Carrie Effect” and the influence of Field’s lens on early twenty-first century fashion, this blog entry is about another important (and slightly more interesting) character on Sex and the City —New York City itself.

Dubbed by the city’s landmarks Preservation Commission as “delightful and interesting,” Perry Street, in New York’s West Village, is a tree-lined preserve for many historical buildings. All are residential, each more beautiful than the next. One of the most iconic homes on the block between Bleecker Street and West Fourth is No. 66.

Built in 1866 by architect Robert Mook, this Italianate style townhouse is not famous for being the home of poet Edna St. Vincent Millay, first lady Eleanor Roosevelt or some other gilded name in Village history. Instead, it is known as the fictional home of Carrie Bradshaw. In the mid-2000’s, it was also home to busloads of tourists who crowded the stoop trying to relive their favorite SATC moments, cosmopolitans and all. While Carrie was supposed to live in a rent-controlled apartment on the Upper East Side (245 East 73rd Street to be exact), the 4000 square foot brownstone was the actual façade and location used in the show. Originally, the show was shot in front of 64 Perry Street, but the grander stoop of neighbor 66 won out as the favorite spot after three seasons. The setting for many memorable scenes in the show’s eight year run, the house is now listed as the 92nd place to visit in New York City on the blog 1000 Things To See In NYC. It beats out Magnolia Bakery (100 on the list), another Village location immortalized by a visit from Carrie and her friends.

PerryStreet

In 2008, community residents won a campaign to stop Sex and the City tour buses from looping the neighborhood. If you Google the address, the house is actually blurred out on the map, rumored to be part of the $9.85 million sale by an anonymous buyer in 2012. The house was sold again in 2013 for $13.5 million and current estimates list it at $35 million.

The buses may have stopped years ago and the throngs of fans have dwindled, but the house still sits quietly behind a “no trespassing” sign hung over the front steps —a reminder of its famous past. Occasionally, especially on the weekends, you will still see a group of outrageously dressed, selfie-loving tourists stop to relive a Carrie moment. They come from all over the world, some wearing heels and tutus, to pay homage to their anti-hero, and unbeknownst to most, the influences of Patricia Field.

Sources:

Shanahan, Gerry. The New York Times, September 9, 2007.

1000 Things To Do In NYC Blog

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During this past season of “Mad Men,” Don Draper, the advertising executive and newly divorced protagonist of the show, was living at Avenue of the Americas (6th Ave) and Waverly. This address, which is in Greenwich Village, is an odd place for an ad man like Don Draper to live. Everything on this show is deliberate, and when the episode aired, I thought I knew why the executive producer chose this area for Don.

My theory was that this was where Sally, his pre-teen daughter would come into direct contact with the anti-war movement. I thought there would be young anti-war students living in the building. My expectation at the start of the season, was that on a weekend Don had his children with him, an office emergency would occur. Instead of taking the kids to the office, he would have a neighbor watch them. Sally would discover some posters or fliers, read them, and talk to the babysitter. I was wrong; nothing close to my prediction came true. After the season ended, I never could figure out why Don was living in Greenwich Village for a season.

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It is amazing the number of television shows and movies that have been set in, or filmed in Greenwich Village. The exteriors for the apartments on “Sex and the City,” “Friends,” and “The Cosby Show” were filmed in Greenwich Village even though most of the apartments were not set in Greenwich Village. “Sex and the City” did some filming in Greenwich Village, including Magnolia Bakery.  “Gossip Girl” has filmed in this area as well. “White Collar” also filmed part of an episode in Greenwich Village. Some of the movies which have been filmed in Greenwich Village are “Rent,” “Men In Black II,” “When Harry Met Sally,” “Enchanted,” “Spiderman,” “Taxi Driver,” “I Am Legend,” and The Godfather trilogy. For more films and television shows that have used locations in the Village, check out this map.

http://maps.google.com/maps/ms?hl=en&ie=UTF8&msa=0&msid=105432397968319062098.000494415caa540c266cd&z=14

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