Sarah Jessica Parker, who grew up as one of eight kids, knows her way around a hand-me-down. So when Gap tapped the star to produce a limited-edition collection of boys' and girls' apparel, she had a clear vision: to create clothes that would actually last from kid to kid . . . to those kids' kids.
"It's enormously expensive to raise children — what are we giving people for their hard-earned dollars?" Parker asked in an exclusive interview with POPSUGAR. "The clothes they buy their children should be able to be passed down in decent shape. Not addressing the practical needs of parents is foolish."
The result is a collection rooted in sustainability. She sought out affordable fabrics that are both durable — "You can't stop children from sliding to second base and ripping out the knees," she told us — and that feel good against even sensitive skin, like that of her daughter. In selecting prints and patterns, Parker also found herself asking, "How would we feel if this particular item were covered in paint or food?"
"Not addressing the practical needs of parents is foolish."
Because even her son's clothes became hand-me-downs for her daughters, Marion and Tabitha, she also made it a goal to have gender-nonconforming pieces. "These t-shirts are for everybody," she told us. "There's not 'this is a boy's t-shirt, and this is a girl's t-shirt.' Things need to be fluid and move back and forth between children."
Another crucial decision Parker made to ensure heirloom status? No trends, period.
"I really want these clothes to be pulled out of someone's attic and be given to another child in five years and not have them say, 'Oh, he'll never wear that. That was 2018,'" she told POPSUGAR. "We tried not to do a huge amount of sparkles and glitter and sequins so that the clothing could suit a lot of people and not just a particular group of girls or boys. They can always add the other stuff."
Perhaps most precious of all, each piece in the collection — which features illustrated references to Parker's monthly "rabbit, rabbit" superstition — includes a special "property of" sewn-in tag to detail each wearer throughout the years. It's a ritual from Parker's own childhood.
The special collection debuts March 1, and prices range from $17 to $78. If parents consider the cost per wear per child, however, it's a savings that is as sweet as the clothes are sentimental.
As Parker said, "I hope the pieces are cherished by the children who wear them, that items are passed down among generations, and that some great memories are created while wearing them."
Read on for more from Parker on the collection and a zoomed-in look at each timeless piece.