Hi, everyone. There are style rules we all French women agree on. And there are also things they would never do in terms of outfits. Since I work in fashion, and I'm French, I get asked about French style. So I discussed this topic with some well-dressed French friends, and we put a list together of things they would never do, and what they would do instead.
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Here comes the list of 10 tips for French chic. If you are a French woman, you will usually not mix black and brown in the same outfit. It's either/or. That's why you own black boots and brown boots, black heels and brown heels, black sandals and brown sandals. You will probably not wear more than two colors at the same time in an outfit. Exception: blue jeans. That would be a third color, but that's it.
Same goes for prints. If you wear one piece in your outfit that has print on it, then the rest of the outfit should better consist of solid colors. Otherwise it's a bit too loud. A bit too. Too colorful. No old jogging outfits. Ever, actually. Without being that dramatic and extreme, that's the idea. No over-accessorizing. Let me explain. If you're wearing large earrings, you probably won't wear a necklace on top. Less is more. Less is effortless, and effortless is great. Also you don't want to mix materials in your jewelry. It's either all gold or all silver. In my case, I'm more the silver girl, which you can tell. If you're a French woman, you will not change styles every season or every year. You know what fits you, in terms of cut, length, colors. Etc. And you actually just stick to it. You will invest a high share of your disposable income into high quality key pieces, instead of buying things that are trendy or fashionable. Which kind of key pieces are timeless, you may ask?
That's a separate post, and that's coming up soon on this My blog. Your purse should match your shoes, which means huge closet! Exception though: cocktail outfits and evening gowns, in which case the shoes will have to match the dress and not the purse. So French women will go shopping, wondering, Hmm, I don't have a dress in this color yet. I like it, but should I buy it? Because I don't have the shoes to wear it with. What about the backup plan– black shoes? Uh-uh. Because black is a color! That brings us to point 7, about accent colors. French women tend to rely heavily on neutral colors, taken in a quite broad sense. For instance, khaki green, beige, camel, cognac, champagne. Yes, in France we tend to name our colors after alcohol types. True story! I would also add navy blues, grays and whites to that group of colors that are easy to build an outfit around. And then, there will be one accent color coming in to break the monotony, so to say. That could be a scarf around your neck, a nice hat, huge earrings, statement necklace, a big arm cuff on one side (colorful if possible). A nice purse, something like that. You could also go all black, which I love to do and then play the makeup card by wearing a bright red lipstick. International beauty brands have been trying for years to launch, in France, fancy colors of lipstick and nail polishes.
It just doesn't work. French women have always, and will always, wear red lips and red nails. So they can be different shades clearer [lighter] or darker, based on the season or the mood but you will not sell green, yellow, black, white, orange, or anything like that. To close the chapter about color, let's talk about socks for a minute. If you wear dark or black shoes, you'll wear black socks. If you're wear white or clear [light] shoes, you'll wear white socks. That's it. If you have any other color in your drawer, it's probably because once you had to buy a pack of ten different colors in order to get one pair of black ones. Yeah. French women are truly good at knowing how [what] proper fit should look like. They will wear clothes that have their size, the proper cut, not too tight on the belly, not too loose on the bum, not too short if it's a top, because you don't want people to see your belly if you raise your arms. And that's a problem for me personally because I have a long torso, so in France I'm in trouble, believe me! Disclaimer: Are there exceptions to those principles? Of course! Like in all things French, you have the rules and then you have the exceptions. It's like the language. Now what would be fun would be to reverse the game. You tell me which style rules apply in your countries. I'd love to read that, because the way people dress in a country says so much about the culture of that country. Don't forget to give this post a thumbs-up before you watch the next one. Thank you! I'll see you soon again.