In Style

How to attain Parisienne Chic in your Style and Wardrobe

All of my Parisian Style & Wardrobe Posts can be found here.

If I could sum up their style in one word, it would be RESTRAINT.

Everything is understated, held back, and one item less than what you think you might need.

Coco Chanel has famously stated to look in the mirror every morning before you leave, and remove one accessory.

That is the epitome of what French chic is.

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The piece that is showcased is exactly that – the piece that is showcased; it can be complemented by other pieces but the star is never outshone.

For instance, if you have a dress, wear just the dress without any accessories and a simple pair of sandals.

Feel uncomfortably under-accessorized? Now you’ve hit on French Chic.

French-Wardrobe-Parisian-Fashion-Outfit-Three


Maybe you have this great graphic t-shirt you want to wear. Wear it just with jeans and ballet flats with your hair up in a chignon. Throw a blazer over it if you feel like you need to be a little more dressed up, and stop.

I personally would add a ring to the entire look but earrings in this case, would be too much, as it’d take away from your focus piece: your t-shirt.

Other things that would describe being French chic (and not necessarily what I ascribe to in dressing)?

French-Wardrobe-Parisian-Fashion-List-Essentials-Items

Generally speaking:

Minimal colour popping (even a red handbag or red flats would be too much, think smaller. MUCH SMALLER.).. but I have seen French girls wear a really brightly coloured dress, and some simple sandals. No accessories except some shades.

Everything in neutrals: black, dark brown, ivory, cream, white, navy blue, beige, taupe and grey being their staples.

No prints (if you have printed anything, it better be a tiny, TINY print)

No mixing and matching of prints or colours. Keep it to a monochromatic scheme.

Nothing too literally French: Red flats, jeans and a stripe top with a *gasp* beret? You might as well scream “poseur”.

Minimal makeup is also the key. Either the lips, or the eyes but never both, and even better if you do neither and just wear a BIT of blush.

This is the reason why many French wardrobes are so spare and if they buy things, it has to go with the ONE jacket in their wardrobe, or the ONE pair of fabulous pants that they own and wear to death.

French-Wardrobe-Parisian-Fashion-Outfit-One

So, do I follow all of the above?

It depends on my mood. Sometimes I do, sometimes I don’t. I don’t really like black THAT much (I’m warming back up to wearing it), but I’ve noticed that my colour palette as I have aged into Mommy territory has started toning down a bit.

I still do things like match yellow with teal, but less often. Nowadays, I am more apt to wear ivory with grey and navy blue with my necklace as the bright colour pop.

I can’t help but be influenced by what I see, but I’ve also noticed that my colour palette is very strongly in the territory of: navy / cobalt / midnight blues, greys of all flattering shades for my skintone, and all sorts of creams and whites. Those are my three staple colours and I never veer too far off the mark.

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Sherry of Save. Spend. Splurge.

I got out of $60,000 of debt in 18 months using TheBudgetingTool.com. Since then, I have worked 50% of my career (taking 1-2 year breaks), and quadrupled my income within 2 years of graduating, going from $65K to $260K (savings rate = 85%). I could retire today if I wanted, but love my work-life balance as a freelancing consultant in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math). I also post daily on Instagram @saverspender.

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4 Comments

  1. Michelle

    I love these posts. When I lived in France people also lacked the space that most North Americans cram a whole bunch of stuff into (clothes/shoes/etc.)

    Reply
    1. sherry@savespendsplurge.com

      Oh yes! The space is also a factor. I was surprised at how little space they had, but it made sense and I got used to it pretty quickly.

      Reply
  2. Tracy

    French women are always so effortlessly chic. I often wonder how they don’t get caught up in the consumerism like we do here in North America. Certainly they have no lack of fast fashion retailers alongside major fashion houses. When I see young people on instagram in Europe they seem to wear lots of trendy clothing. Really would be interested to know how they keep their spending in check.

    Reply
    1. sherry@savespendsplurge.com

      1. They don’t have the money.. as in they don’t make a lot

      2. Credit is very hard to obtain there as in credit cards, lines of credit etc.

      As a result, they live within their means.

      Reply

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