a blog for the beauty obsessed…

Parisian Chic / How to Dress Like You Live in Paris


Paris, the city of love, fashion….everything. And now, let me ask you…who doesn’t want to dress like a parisian? Ines de la Fressange, Chanel muse and author of the book Parisian Chic: A Style Guide, tells readers how to truly dress like you live in the capital of fashion. Here are some of her quick tip and the book is one I will be sure to get.

The Blazer “Push back or roll up the sleeves – the ultimate ‘easy chic’ statement. Even better when the lining’s a different color.”

The Trench “Never, ever buckle the belt properly like a good little girl. Tie it in front or behind with the buckle hanging loose. Unobtrusive fashion statements like this (‘Life’s too short,’ or ‘the buckle’s broken but I loves this coat so much I found a solution…’) are very, very Parisian.”

The Little Black Dress “The little black dress is not simply an item of clothing, it’s a concept. It’s abstract, it’s universal – which means there’s one that’s perfect for everyone … Today the Parisian has several little black dresses, just as she has several pairs of jeans: each is a variation on a theme.”

The Perfect Jeans “Jeans are never too risky; they’re a little like salt – they go with everything!”

The Bag “Better a genuine straw bag than a fake luxury label. Counterfeit is a counterfashion!”

(All photos and text from New York Fashion)

Top Ten Parisian Chic Fashion Rules

1. BLING IS NOT KING “You don’t see a Parisian girl with a logo on the T-shirt, on the earrings, and putting all diamonds and all the jewelry together. They would take away things. This idea of wearing all the jewels altogether, you know, all the necklaces and then the lipstick too. Like Christmas trees. It’s sometimes just too much.”

2. FORGET STILETTOS (OR AT LEAST, LEARN TO WALK IN THEM) “When you see all these girls, they can’t walk anymore! This obsession about having 4 or 5 inches. Like, you know, there’s no way to go out without heels. It’s a new prejudice, and it’s terrible. They can’t walk and they say, ‘Oh yeah, they’re very comfortable.’ The shoes, they’re not comfortable, they can’t be comfortable, it’s impossible.”

3. CHASTE CAN BE CHIC “This obsession of wanting to be sexy, you know? This idea that you dress up for seduction, and for others. It’s not true. You dress up for yourself. Sometimes it’s an old jacket that you’ve had since forever, but each time you put it on, you feel great in it. And when you ask men, what they think is sexy — I mean normal men, not totally stupid, you know? — they won’t tell you, ‘I love fake lips, a lot of Botox, and huge heels and huge tits.’ They will tell you very simple things, like a woman that I can touch her hair, a woman that loves to eat, but they will never tell you, ‘Listen, if they’re not 5-foot-10, no way.”

4. LOSE THOSE LEGGINGS “Have you seen someone with leggings looking great? Models, with incredible bodies, doing yoga, maybe…[you may as well] stay in bed, at home with your pajamas. You see pictures of your grandparents, they all look so beautiful. You see a kind of dignity and beauty in a man with a real shirt, the woman wearing the jacket made maybe by the guy down the street. You keep [something] from your grandmother, maybe it’s a little ring, a little necklace, or, something simple but very charming. And uh, you would never keep the leggings of your grandmother.”

5. SKIP FLIP-FLOPS — SOMETIMES “It depends, you know. Sophie Gachet [my co-author] is very against it. She says they look sloppy after a while. But imagine what I am wearing today (left), but with turquoise Havianas. It could be fun, like a Cuban outfit, you know?”

6. DON’T BE FAKE “What I really hate, is a fake handbag. A handbag that wants to come from a famous brand, but it’s a fake one in plastic. I do prefer somebody carrying a basket, or a tissue bag or… any kind of bag, rather than a copy of something.”

7. NAIL YOUR STAPLES “People don’t think it matters so much, your clothes. And it took me a lifetime to understand that it does. I’ve been a shopaholic. I always had the feeling I never had enough, and I always had the wrong things. And actually, I was buying the wrong things. Because, take a V-neck navy blue sweater: It’s quite boring, but actually it fits you, and you look great. When you wake up at 7 and you’re in a hurry, it’s just what you need.”

8. AVOID FANTASY PIECES “One should always say, ‘Shall I wear it this evening?’ If you buy it thinking ‘the day I’ll be on holidays and tan and rested, it’s going to be great.’ You’re never tan and rested, and on holidays.”

9. YOUTH IS OVERRATED “Everybody gets old. It is terrible, but it’s like this. A lot of people [mistakenly] think that you get less good when you get old. Journalists working on TV, for instance, when they’re very young, when you see images of them, the way they had their hair and their makeup, it’s terrible, usually. After seeing professional hairdressers and professional makeup artists for years, they look better. And we call that the Hillary Clinton syndrome,” she laughs. “When you look much better when you’re 40 than when you’re 20. But the more you get old, the more it appears what you think. And, um, if you have mean ideas about everything, it appears. If your obsession is to explain to others that your husband is more wealthy than their husband, no way you would look all right, you know?”

10. GET A LIFE Embrace culture. “I wouldn’t have said that when I was 18. But after a while, if you go in museums, you see things: the way you mix up colors, the jewels that you would wear and how you would wear them. I think all this can be linked: what you think, what you see, and what’s your life. I mean you understand immediately in the street who’s who. You see when people are not really very kind, you know. You see it by the face, by the clothes, by the attitude.”

(list from Alexa: Fashion News from The New York Post)


4 thoughts on “Parisian Chic / How to Dress Like You Live in Paris

  1. I love this post 🙂
    Have a look at my blog: thefeistyshoecollector.wordpress.com

  2. It was so fun to read the post and it is so true : I am never tan and rested, and on holidays…hehehe

  3. Great post! 🙂 Love all the photos to match 🙂


  4. Fantastic post! I especially like your 10 point. I will make sure to keep this in the back of my mind from now on.

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