Remembering Designing Women's Dixie Carter

By Ilana Diamond

Apr 15, 2010

Dixie Carter, known for her portrayal of Julia Sugarbaker on the late-'80s/early-'90s show Designing Women, passed away last weekend at age 70. The role of Ms. Sugarbaker—an iron fist in a velvet glove—pioneered the role of the strong, outspoken female character, and left an everlasting and importantly progressive impression on TV.

In honor of Carter's influential career, we've rounded up a few of her memorable performances.

Julia sets Miss Georgia World straight about her talented sister, Suzanne:



In this episode from 1987, Julia spoke out against the hatred and lies surrounding the AIDS epidemic:



Even Julia made a fool of herself sometimes, but still, she did it so gracefully:



Julia explains what it takes to be a women to a few misguided men:



At her son's wedding, Ms. Sugarbaker breaks out a very memorable rendition of "Sweet Georgia Brown":

What are your favorite Dixie Carter moments?

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  • MisfitChicks Apr 16, 2010

    I adored Dixie. She was spunky on screen and she just seemed so classy. No matter the role she took, she did it well. She was also beautiful.

  • grace87 Apr 16, 2010

    May she rest in peace..

  • Carolee99 Apr 16, 2010

    You were beautiful and funny. I'll miss you.

  • txgirl75 Apr 16, 2010

    she was a great actress and will be missed.

  • WhatAMessWeHave Apr 16, 2010

    Rest in Peace Dixie, my condolences go out to your husband Hal and your entire family. You were a classy lady, who was also a wonderful actress. As for the question I loved seeing Dixie show up as a defense lawyer on Law and Order: SVU a few years back and of course her stint on Desperate Housewives.

  • Starprincess13 Apr 15, 2010

    RIP Dixie Carter

  • CourtneyApple Apr 15, 2010

    I will miss her, she is the 1 who gave me courage and the ability to stand up for myself

  • IndianaMom Apr 15, 2010

    Julia had a way with words.

  • telvisnostic Apr 15, 2010

    Well you posted my favorite one with the History has shown. One of my favorite is in the episode where it's called Julia Drives Over the First Amendment. One can only hope that they bring this show back into syndication. It was great. My mom and I have watched every episode.