Hello there friends, after an extended break from blogging I am excited to be sharing once again in my corner of the internet. Recently Daniel and I took a spontaneous trip to Paris to celebrate 8 years of marriage and frankly the place that we are at in life after a challenging two years. It was a dream, to say the least… so many memories and inspiration to carry us into our everyday life!
And of course, during our time there I also couldn’t help but observe and be inspired by all the fashion I was seeing around Paris.
And who could blame me?
The French have such an effortless way of looking chic in their day-to-day style. This is why I thought it would be fun to share with you all the top 8 items I observed everyone wearing in the Fall/Winter right now along with a few styling notes. Whether you just want to add a little French attitude to your own style, or you’re traveling to Europe and want to feel like you blend with the locals, this post is for you!
I would also use these items as a framework for what to bring on future Fall/Winter trips to Europe.
So let’s dive in!
First off let’s talk about shoes. By far the shoe of choice for most Parisians was a sneaker. And even though I saw every brand of sneaker under the sun including Veja, Nike, and Adidas, the brands I saw more than any other were Converse and New Balance.
Ahh, the beloved sneaker (my shoe of choice as well) – it seemed that sneakers were the hero shoe in every Parisian wardrobe because of both the style and comfort they provide, a reoccurring theme in many of the items to come. No matter what style of sneaker I saw almost all of the colorways were neutral, or black and white. But if they did have a little color, they were almost always worn with a neutral outfit. The French are really good about letting just one or two things about their outfit pop.
Black Chelsea Boots
The second most common type of shoe I saw in Paris was black Chelsea boots. Whether they were streamlined or combat, they all had one thing in common – a chunky or lugged sole.
The style notes I took here were that they were either paired with long, loose, or straight jeans that went over the top of the boot, classic straight-cropped jeans, or they were paired with shorts/skirts/dresses and sheer tights. Soo eh hem that means they were worn with basically everything, making this shoe a very versatile shoe to bring.
Now let’s talk about clothing. Belted coats were by far the coat of choice amongst French gals and they all fit within these three categories:
- The classic Trench coat, worn with a draped to oversized fit in a range of Khaki colors, gray shades, and of course black
- The vegan (faux) leather Trench coat, worn with a draped fit almost exclusively in black with a few electric blue exceptions
- The classic belted Wool coat, worn draped to slightly oversized in shades of black, gray, cream, and brown (although again mostly in black)
The way they made these coats so timeless and classy was by using one of the oldest tricks in the style handbook – wearing their coat slightly oversized. Now, this doesn’t necessarily mean that they were hugely oversized (although that is very of the moment right now) but it does mean that when it came to fit, every French girl seemed to have a perfectly draped coat on without exception. I personally loved this because it is so timeless and such an easy way to look effortlessly chic, it is also something I am working on in my wardrobe currently so it hit home.
Vegan Leather Pieces
Whether it be vegan leather skirts, pants, shorts, or trenches, many Parisian gals were wearing vegan leather or “faux” leather separates and the boldest of the bold were head to toe in it.
Vegan leather pieces are just so fun to wear right now (I packed several pieces myself) and since they are a major trend currently I was not surprised to see our French friends wearing them in many different ways. But what felt unique to a lot of the ways I have seen vegan leather styled in the past was how many Parisians would wear their pieces with sheer tights and shoes like Converse high tops or Chelsea boots. This added a classic sense of refinement that felt very French to me.
So that leads me here, this one is a bit more of a styling tip than anything else, but I saw so many outfits paired with sheer black tights that I felt it deserved a mention in this list.
It seemed that many Parisians were wearing sheer black tights for practical reasons – to expand the variety of what they wear in the wintertime – dresses, skirts, tailored shorts, etc. But adding sheer tights also created different lines added some femininity and gave an overall classic and polished flare to their outfits. It’s an added bonus that sheer tights are also an inexpensive way to accomplish this. A big yes in my book.
Full-Length Tailored Pants
Continuing on, many Parisians were wearing tailored pants as an alternative to jeans. This is one observation that I loved not only because it’s a big trend right now to wear tailored separates, but also because it is just so classically chic.
On the note of styling – all of the pants I saw had a full-length hemline and were worn slightly loose. With everything from sneakers to Chelsea boots, with fitted tops tucked in or oversized sweaters worn almost like a tunic over the top.
Another node to the current trends and something I saw a lot while in Paris were jeans that were full-length and not so form-fitting.
Just like the trouser alternative, these jeans were worn with anything from sneakers to Chelsea boots and fitted or lose oversized tops alike. All worn in either black or dark denim hues.
I would like to note though that I also saw a lot of classic straight-cropped jeans in raw and finished hems, I think that this style of jean is just everlastingly classic and is great to include in your lineup of denim along with all of the new loose, full-length silhouettes we have been seeing as of late. And the French agree.
I’ve included a few of these classic styles above as well for you to see.
Black Crossbody Bags
Last but certainly not least, the accessory I saw the most while in Paris was the classic black Crossbody bag.
I think I saw so many of these bags because the black crossbody bag is something that is just so timeless and functional. There is not much to mention here in terms of styling, other than almost every bag was on the medium to smaller side, and I did notice that many Parisians were specifically wearing Polène bags, in their classic bag, the Numero Un in the nano size.
I personally have a few Polène bags currently but was given this classic one for our anniversary as an upgrade from the Cole Haan bag I have owned for nearly 7 years now.
I couldn’t link the bags in the photos above but you can view them in my individual links above. Otherwise, I just included several bags that are beautiful options, ranging from lower to higher in pricing.
And that’s a wrap, my friends.
All of these items in my opinion are a mix of current trends and timeless pieces, which make them great investment pieces Europe trip or not. And as always the thing that made all of these pieces feel uniquely French was all in the way they were worn… with that trademark “je ne sais quoi” vibe French girls embody so well. Natural makeup, unfussy hair, classic minimal jewelry, something polished, and something just a little bit undone.
There is always something to learn from observing style everywhere you go, and I truly love this! Hope you found these thoughts insightful and maybe there’s a thing or two you can incorporate into your own style if something hit home.
That’s it for now, but it’s so good to be back – thank you for being here and following along with me! If you aren’t already subscribed you can do so in the pink box at the bottom of this page and never miss a post!
See you soon for more fashion talks.