On Saturday, April 28th, at the age of 97 handbag designer Judith Leiber died. Though famous for her quirky crystal encrusted clutches that have swung from the wrists of Hilary Clinton, Blake Lively and Jennifer Lopez, she was perhaps best known for her role in Sex and the City.
It was a swan-shaped wristlet designed by Lieber that Big gave Carrie in lieu of saying ‘I love you’. Though a horrified Bradshaw was prompted by the gift to tell Big her feelings she described the bag as ‘just wrong, it was wrong’, that small screen moment solidified Lieber’s life’s work in pop culture history.
Watch the famous scene below:
The designer’s life story is a far cry from that of the SATC protagonist. As a young woman, Holocaust-Survivor Lieber hid from persecution by the Nazis with other Jews in a small apartment in Budapest.
Her first introduction to the couture world came after the war when she made handbags for secretaries of the American Legation. Over a decade after she moved to the United States, Lieber opened her company in 1963.
She became known for making cocktail bags covered in rhinestones. Though she later left the company she didn’t stop creating. Just last year Lieber collaborated with Alexander Wang on a clutch embedded with crystals shaped like a bundle of rolled up dollar bills.