What is Parisian Style?
While Paris is certainly the fashion capital of the world, Parisian style fashion is not a cliche. In the book Paris Street Style: A Guide to Effortless Chic, French journalist and personal stylist Isabelle Thomas and photographer Frédérique Veysset say “Fashion is indeed at the core of French culture, but we don’t always go out on the streets wearing a beret or a pair of cigarette pants like a Saint Laurent model.”
Parisian style is hard to define. It is defined somewhat by what it isn’t. Its about avoiding dressing head to toe in designer clothes and wearing too much make up with gaudy jewelry. Instead, Parisian Style is about being beautiful by being yourself.
Parisian style is:
- au naturel
As much as the Italians are flamboyant in their fashion choices, the French are down to earth. They don’t want to be seen as trying too hard. Casual elegance, understated beauty and most importantly, being au naturel are some of the keywords to unlocking the Parisian street style. Here, our French student model Marion is wearing a simple black blazer and white shirt that is accentuated by the Coral tribal spike necklace. Light makeup, no fuss hair, simple earrings complement the natural look, where less is more without being boring.
Isabelle Thomas says, “People shouldn’t be looking for a disguise through fashion.” Simple is harder to put together than extravagant or flamboyant. Nonchalant chic takes work because its about a true sense of who you are, rather than who you are pretending to be, like a Halloween costume. Below, my other French student model friend Zoe is wearing a simple black tank top, but accentuated with two pieces that show she didn’t just roll out of bed. The coral bracelet paired with the bohemian brass pendant necklace took a lot of thought, but is still understated and elegant. Its not boring, but doesn’t scream at you either.
Timeless pieces are what defines the Parisian style: the little black dress, a trench coat, V-neck cashmere sweaters, the short leather jacket. But the French express their individuality through the accessories. In Parisian Chic Style Guide, runway model Ines de la Fressange swears by mixing affordable timeless basics with high-fashion touches, especially with tasteful accessories. Here, Marion is again pairing her timeless black and white outfit with a splash of spring green with the green and gold chandelier earrings. Its sophisticated because its timeless, yet memorable.