Paris is the capital of high fashion, filled with stylish boutiques and high-end designer headquarters. It is also home to a lively street style culture; everyday women stroll through busy streets and casually dine in cosy cafes looking effortlessly chic. To get a new take on the classic "Parisienne" style, women on this side of the globe can take a nod from the runways and streets of fashion's capital city and pair classic French pieces with modern colours, textures, and accessories.
French women have long mastered the art of dressing to the nines. Whether they are off to a cocktail party, getting dressed for the office, or preparing for a gala, they always look stylish. Women who want a new look for the office or a great outfit for an event can add a smart French twist to their style with some new takes on classic pieces like the little black dress and the pencil skirt.
New takes on basic black and white
Black is always a staple shade in French women's wardrobes, and they wear it well. From little black dresses to sleek black jumpers, French women manage to make the most basic pieces look chic. White is also a favourite in the capital of fashion; women wear it on its own in delicate looking dresses or pair it with black to create contrast. Both black and white continue to dominate French street style and designer collections at Paris fashion week.
For a touch of Parisian chic, women can take a cue from the Louis Vuitton Spring 2015 show and pair a little black dress with a statement handbag and shoes, drawing the eye in with a little bit of colour. For a classic office look, they can draw inspiration from Jean Paul Gaultier's black and white pinstripe pieces that give 1940s' menswear looks a feminine twist. They can also play with texture as Givenchy does — pairing light, sheer white fabrics with tough black leather looks. Or they can emulate Valentino and Chloe, which showed off a softer side in feminine lace looks.
Classics from the 1950s with a twist
The 1950s never truly went out of style in Paris, where pencil skirts and cardigan jumpers have remained staples for decades. These looks still play a big role in French women's wardrobes, as they are versatile and classic. Mui Mui sent 1950s classics down the runway during Paris Fashion Week Spring 2015. Shoppers can keep their eyes out for pencil skirts, ruffled button-up shirts, and elegant tent-style jackets. They can keep the look fresh with modern touches like surprising colour contrasts and mixing up textures.
Whether they are browsing through Paris' famous flea markets or sipping cafe au lait at a quaint outdoor table, French women always seem to master looking cool without trying.
The 1970s were huge in the Spring/Summer 2015 collections in Paris. Labels like Elie Saab and Chanel launched wide-legged pants, blazers that borrow from menswear looks, platform shoes, and tall leather boots, drawing from popular street styles in the city. Busy 1970s' prints also feature heavily in collections such as Yves Saint Laurent. Although designers released these looks for spring, many of the blazers, long pants, boots, and colour palettes work well for autumn as well.
7/8 length pants
Although long, wide-cut pants are popular looks in many Paris collections, many French designers chose to send short 7/8 length pants down the runway instead. This look grazes the ankle and has a classic touch of 1950s' chic. Women can wear these pants with cute ballet flats for an outfit that can look right at home in Paris.
Stripes are so prevalent in French fashion that it is almost a stereotype, but recent Paris designs take this classic look and give it a modern spin. Balmain filled its runways with striped dresses and jumpsuits in glittery fabrics and bold colours. Jean Paul Gaultier pieces play with stripes in brightly coloured sporty looks.
How to buy French labels on eBay
If you want to add a touch of Paris to your wardrobe, picking up a few pieces from French labels can help you get the look. You can find a wide variety of French labels on eBay, from high-end designers to high street brands that offer runway looks to the average woman. To find specific designers, use search terms that include both the label name and the type of piece you are looking for. You can also use colours and sizes in your search terms, or you can use filters to find them.