after the jump: lydia marks (mp3)

by Grace Bonney

In the vast history of film and TV sets, one will forever stand out as my favorite: Carrie Bradshaw’s bedroom in Sex and the City. I have forever coveted and tried to recreate that space throughout my years in New York. So when I heard from the person who was behind the makeover of that incredible space (which I also loved), I jumped at the chance to speak with her.

Lydia Marks is a New York-based set decorator and interior designer who has worked on films like Sex and the City 1 and 2, The Devil Wears Prada, The Namesake and Broken Flowers. In addition to film and commercial work, Lydia also runs an interior design business, Marks & Frantz, with her partner, Lisa Frantz. Lydia was kind enough to join me on air yesterday to talk about the life of a set decorator, the secrets behind some of our favorite film sets, the differences between onscreen and residential design and her own personal style favorites. It’s always fascinating to hear how movie worlds come together, so I hope you’ll enjoy Lydia’s interview as much as I did. Also, if you’re in the NYC area, Lydia will be speaking at the D&D building about residential and set design on October 10th. Click here for more details on the talk. Thanks, Lydia! xo, grace

*Photo of Lydia by Jamie Starkman; SATC photos by Craig Blankenhorn

“Sometimes you have only 30 seconds of screen time to create a world that can be read easily by the audience so that they can see who this person is supposed to be, and you may never go back there again.”

— Lydia Marks on After the Jump


More photos of Lydia’s work continue after the jump . . .

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  • I loved Carrie’s original apartment and was saddened when it was redecorated in the movie. Thought anyone who was a fan of shelter magazines could have lived in that redone space while her old apartment seemed to exude the character’s personality.

  • I loved both the tv apartment (vintage/flea market style) and the redone movie apartment, a la sophisticated uptown girl. I even loved the looks of the apartment she and Big lived in once they were married, but would not find it liveable.

  • Carrie’s new apartment is gorgeous. However, the old apartment is my favorite because it’s something more real and palpable. It was designed on a budget and I feel more identified with that because I live on a budget too and seeing that you can creat an awesome space with a few bucks is inspiring. May be it’s because I love the more real decoration rather than the perfection of editorial design.

  • SO great! Thanks for this interview Grace! Such great design on Sex & The City and Devil Wears Prada.

  • Carrie’s old apartment is a classic of all times, I remembered to click pause just to see the details, the woven laundry basket, the Aidan’s chair, her sidetable which for a time was a re-painted chair. Life was breathing there. I didn’t thought the “new” apartment although it represented a new part of her life mirrored her so well. But the truth is she was on a turning point in life when she renews her appartment, old clothes gone, so…great job!

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