We're just going to put it out there: We want to be Inès de la Fressange when we grow up. The 59-year-old French model, designer, author, and bona fide style icon just released her newest book, The Parisian Chic Look Book: What Should I Wear Today?, a follow-up to 2011's best-selling Parisian Chic. Given her long career in the fashion industry and enviably effortless street style, we'll take anything de la Fressange has to say as sartorial scripture. Which is why we were intrigued by what she had to say about the type of fashion item that can age you in a recent interview with The Telegraph.
De la Fressange spoke to the fine balance of dressing as you get older, saying "When you're 50 or 60, you don't want to look like a nun, but you don't want to look like a teenager either." She added, "Sometimes, I've noticed that women who are like me, they don't have the idea to go to Urban Outfitters or Topshop to buy a simple T-shirt because they only go in expensive places. But if you only wear expensive clothes, it makes you look much older."
While we would never advocate wearing only expensive things anyway, our interpretation of de la Fressange's statement is that neglecting to mix in more casual, easy pieces with your formal, polished ones can read a little too sophisticated. That's exactly why fashion girls often choose to pair a dress with an unexpected shoe, like a sneaker, for example. It's all about the element of surprise and adding your own personal spin to your look, as opposed to just buying an entire outfit off a mannequin.
With that, see examples of Inès de La Fressange's chic, timeless style and shop pieces from some of our favorite French brands below.