Paris Fashion Week has just passed, and it’s that time of the year when fashion enthusiasts eagerly pick through the next big trends. The city of love and style once again dazzled everyone with its spectacular shows, setting new benchmarks in the world of fashion. And what better way to celebrate this time of year than taking inspiration from Parisian fashion style and incorporating it into our looks?
The Allure of Parisian Style
Paris, a city of immense wealth and vibrancy, embodies a captivating amalgamation of various influences and backgrounds. Here, Parisians effortlessly explore a delightful mix of diverse fashion styles, exuding elegance with an air of nonchalance, which is quintessentially French. Known as “chic décontracté” or casual chic, Parisian style is a unique fusion of quality pieces intertwined with timeless classics. This aesthetic is deeply ingrained in the fabric of Parisian culture, a city renowned for its forward-thinking fashion and innate, effortless elegance.
Defining Parisian Style Fashion
Parisian style is characterised by its simplicity and understated elegance. It involves mixing classic, timeless pieces with more sophisticated items to create a look that’s both stylish and comfortable. This fashion philosophy emphasises the importance of fit, with clothes designed to flatter the body without restricting movement, with minimal accessorising. Less is more. After all, it was Coco Chanel who coined the phrase “Before you leave the house, you should look in the mirror and remove one item.”
I think in Parisian fashion, the timeless, sustainable approach to fashion has always been dominant. Unlike the rest of the world, the French will happily buy designer staples that they’ll be proud to wear year on year, and then more than likely, hand down. Timeless pieces like button-down shirts, trench coats, cashmere jumpers and loafers are common, often paired with high-quality investment pieces to complete the look.
What Makes A Parisian Style Wardrobe
Achieving Parisian style is about embracing a natural, “au naturel” look, if you will. There are many ways to add Parisian flair to your wardrobe, and here are some tips to get you started.
To truly capture the Parisian style, a move towards a minimalistic capsule wardrobe is essential. This approach involves carefully curating a collection of timeless, versatile pieces that can be mixed and matched with ease. Rather than chasing fast fashion trends or indulging in impulsive purchases, the focus here is on quality over quantity and, overall, longevity.
12 Items To Build A Minimalist Capsule Wardrobe
Here are the essential pieces you should have in your wardrobe to get you started. These are ones that will be the backbone of any outfit you wear, and if all else fails, will be the ones you come back to when you get stuck for ideas.
1. White Shirt
One staple that is essential to achieving Parisian style is the classic white shirt. This versatile piece can be dressed up or down and pairs well with almost anything. Look for a crisp, fitted style in a high-quality fabric like cotton or silk. To keep it looking chic, make sure to iron it before wearing.
2. White Tee
For a timeless and effortless outfit, pair a white t-shirt with whichever bottoms you have on hand. Whether it’s jeans, a midi skirt, or tailored trousers, a white tee adds a touch of simplicity and elegance to any look.
3. Slim Fit Denim Jeans
Another must-have is a pair of high-waisted jeans. This style is timeless and flattering on all body types. Opt for a dark wash in a straight or slim fit, and you’ll have the perfect pair of jeans that can be dressed up with heels or dressed down with sneakers.
4. Classic Leather Jacket
A leather jacket is another wardrobe staple you need. This versatile piece can be thrown over any outfit to add a touch of edge and sophistication. Look for a classic moto-style jacket in black or brown, and you’ll have a timeless piece that will last for years. If you want to channel the French, a zip leather jacket adds a little more sophistication to an otherwise grungy piece.
The classic trench coat is a staple piece everyone needs in their wardrobe. It can be worn all year round and adds an air of sophistication to any outfit — even activewear if you’re that way inclined. Look for a lightweight, waterproof fabric in traditional beige or black.
6. Classic Breton Top
The iconic striped Breton top is synonymous with Parisian style, and for a good reason. This classic piece adds a touch of French flair to any outfit, whether paired with jeans or tucked into a midi skirt. Look for a high-quality cotton fabric in traditional navy and white stripes.
7. Structured Blazer
A structured blazer effortlessly elevates any ensemble with a touch of refinement. Opt for a timeless silhouette and a versatile neutral shade like black or navy, allowing you to effortlessly transition from casual to formal occasions.
8. White Sneakers
When it comes to achieving minimal style, white sneakers are like the secret ingredient that brings an outfit together. Even if you’re aiming for a minimal wardrobe, a pair of white sneakers is definitely a must-have item. And, if you buy a good quality leather pair, you’ll be able to keep them clean and looking fresh for years to come.
9. Ballet Flats or Leather Loafers
Comfortable yet stylish footwear is essential to Parisian style, and nothing says chic like leather loafers or ballet flats. These timeless shoes add a touch of elegance to any outfit and can be worn year-round. Opt for classic styles in neutral colors like black, nude, or navy.
10. Grey Cashmere Sweater
For an effortlessly chic Parisian-inspired wardrobe, don’t forget to include a high-quality cashmere sweater. Opt for a classic grey shade that pairs perfectly with jeans, trousers, or skirts. This versatile piece adds a touch of luxury to any outfit and is perfect for layering during colder months.
11. Little Black Dress
What is a French wardrobe, without a LBD? This one you have full license to choose something that flatters your figure. Whether that be a mini dress, or a midi that exudes elegance, you decide. Just make sure it’s a timeless piece that can be worn for years to come.
12. Black Cross-Body Leather Bag
Accented with a simple gold chain or clasp, the classic black cross-body leather bag is a staple in French fashion. Think Chanel walking down cobblestone streets or strolling through the farmer’s market with a baguette in hand. This versatile accessory adds both style and functionality to any outfit.
Achieving Parisian style is all about embracing effortless elegance and simplicity. By incorporating classic staples like a white shirt, high-waisted jeans, and a striped Breton top into your wardrobe, you can easily achieve that French chic look. Remember to accessorise sparingly with timeless pieces like leather loafers or ballet flats, and a black cross-body bag. But ultimately, it’s all about embracing that “je ne sais quoi” – that elusive factor of confidence and natural beauty – that truly completes the look.