I Just Stalked My Favorite French Girls—12 Items They Clearly Can’t Live Without

There are at least two things that the French do better than almost anyone else: food and fashion. Yes, it's possible to find a nearly perfect Parisian pastry in the U.S., but it takes some experimentation to replicate the effortless je ne sais quoi of classic French Girl style. And, while I dream of making a perfect pain au chocolate someday, over a decade of working in fashion makes me much more qualified to source the most iconic French-style staples without pulling out my passport.

For a fresh dose of outfit inspo, I scrolled through several of my favorite French follows on Instagram and identified a dozen pieces that appeared at least once on each account. Some items are easy to shop for, such as classic Breton stripes and oversized totes, while others require a bit more style-savvy to pull off, like slinky slip dresses and mismatched prints. The trick is finding a few items that can easily integrated into your existing wardrobe, then have fun creating new outfits that feature at least one or two French-feeling pieces.

Easier said than done? That's where the hours of research come in handy. Keep scrolling for the 12 items to wear in France, plus plenty of outfit inspiration to help you get started.

And, if that doesn't do the trick, well, we'll always have Paris.

Ballet Flats & Mary Janes

French girl style

(Image credit: @tamaramory)

Simple flats are practical for walking or biking around the city, and make even the most casual outfits look more polished.

A Bold Lip

French girl style

(Image credit: @styleheroine)

Even the most basic outfits become alluring with a swipe of lipstick.

Denim on Denim

French girl style

(Image credit: @dianekari)

Different washes and proportions makes this French version of the Canadian Tuxedo a much more elevated alternative.

Luxe Leather Goods

French girl style

(Image credit: @sabinasocol)

Whether you prefer to shop second-hand, vintage, or faux, leather outerwear and accessories are an easy way to add interest to any outfit.

Daily Jewelry Wardrobe

French girl style

(Image credit: @lenafarl)

It's amazing how having a few signature jewelry pieces can make any outfit feel more special. When in doubt, layer necklaces or bracelets for added effect.

Suiting Separates

French girl style

(Image credit: @melodiebance)

When shopping for a suit, it's important to get each piece tailored to fit.

Simple Stripes

French girl style

(Image credit: @annelauremais)

The trick to styling stripes? There is none! Treat them as a neutral; they go with everything while adding a bit more interest for the eye.

A Classic Trench

French girl style

(Image credit: @hellovalentine)

I purchased my first trench coat several years ago and still wear it regularly. Look for styles with a tapered waist or belt to maintain the appearance of a waist, even if you're wearing multiple layers underneath.

A Chic Silk Dress

French girl style

(Image credit: @iamzoefoster)

A simple silk dress is the holy grail of one-piece outfits. Just throw it on and go? C'est magnifique.

Prints on Prints

French girl style

(Image credit: @mv.tianguel)

Clashing prints only work when worn with confidence. That's a French style staple that is free, but not always easy to find.

Scarves & Kerchiefs

French girl style

(Image credit: @erinoffduty)

Don't be embarrassed if you have to watch a YouTube video to learn how to tie the perfect knot—I did, and still have it bookmarked.

Oversized Totes

French girl style

(Image credit: @louloudesaison)

For everyday carryalls, French folks know: the bigger the better.

Drew Elovitz
Director of Content Strategy

Drew Elovitz is originally from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, but has spent the last decade living and working in New York City. She earned a master's degree in media and popular culture from New York University, then began her career on the internet as the Twitter voice of Barbie. She worked previously at Who What Wear as the director of content strategy and also spent several years leading the social media teams at Teen Vogue and Entertainment Weekly. You'll find her byline on the site around topics such as celebrity fashion, must-have basics, beauty favorites (particularly nail polish), and wellness tips and tricks. Her personal style tends to favor the classics: She loves crisp white button-downs, sneakers, and skinny jeans—and no look is complete without a great pair of oversize sunglasses and a trusty leather jacket. After she finishes reading the entire internet every day, she can be found dining out at her favorite restaurants, trying new beauty treatments, or indulging her historical-fiction habit.