The Simple 14-Piece Wardrobe All French Women Will Wear This Season


(Image credit: @emmanuellek_)

I'm usually one for flashy outfits and a go-go-go mentality, but I’ve decided to take it easy this year. And for me, that means taking a break from my endless supply of statement pieces and starting the year with a capsule wardrobe that will help me resolve my extremely overstuffed closet space. Now, who might be the perfect group to look to for capsule wardrobe inspiration? The answer is, of course, French women. 

No one serves effortless style inspiration better. I decided to spend a few hours scrolling through my favourite Parisian and French women’s Instagram feeds to find out what items I should include in my capsule closet, with autumn in mind. The answers just might surprise you. Below, find the 14 things I’m convinced I need to complete that capsule wardrobe of mine.

1. Tailored Wool Coat


(Image credit: @aida.bdji)

A forever favorite for the Parisian, a tailored wool coat is an item you simply can't skip. Bonus points if you buy it in navy.


2. Shearling Jacket


(Image credit: @emmanuellek_)

Parisians follow trends too, especially when they're as cozy as shearling. Layer up in this transitional outerwear piece.


4. Denim Maxi Skirt


(Image credit: @frannfyne)

Speaking of maxi skirts, if you're into this trend, you have to try it the denim iteration. It's such a polished upgrade to blue jeans.


5. White Button-Down Shirt


(Image credit: @aude_julie)

Another item that's a shoo-in for a capsule wardrobe is a white button-down. If anyone knows how to style them, it's French women.


6. Baseball Cap


(Image credit: @tamaramory)

When French women do casual dressing, they do it right. I've seen so many of them giving more elevated pieces a downtime spin with baseball caps lately. 


7. Retro Sneakers


(Image credit: @claire_most)

There was a time when French people laughed at those who travelled to France wearing sneakers, but now they're just like us, but the French prefer styles that are retro and polished.


8. Knit Vests


(Image credit: @slipintostyle)

French people have not moved on from knit vests, and neither have I. Now that autumn has arrived, it is the perfect piece to layer with.


10. Cardigan


(Image credit: @erinoffduty)

This entire outfit is giving the vibe that I'm after this year. Layered, simple, and chic. A cardigan is a must in your capsule wardrobe.


11. Slip Dress


(Image credit: @lenafarl)

From the office to dinner, French women always can rely on a slip dress. This is the purchase that you'll make that will just keep on giving.


12. Leather Jacket


(Image credit: @sabinasocol)

Parisians and New Yorkers have one thing in common—we love a leather jacket. That won't be changing any time so join us in the hype.


13. Ribbed Halter Tank


(Image credit: @tamaramory)

Bonus points if you layer a crew-neck sweater over it and let the halter pop out a little bit, similar to the Bottega Veneta runway styling.


14. Wide-Leg Pants


(Image credit: @leasy_inparis)

The power of a good pair of wide-leg pants is unmatched. No matter what you wear on top, you'll still look chic (yes, even if you pair them with a sweatshirt).


16. Blazers


(Image credit: @melodiebance)

How could you scroll this far without me mentioning a blazer? My bad. You can't give French-girl vibes without having at least three of them in your wardrobe.


17. Gold-Hardware Loafers


(Image credit: @emmanuellek_)

Nothing feels more luxe to me than a pair of loafers with gold detailing. If you are wearing gold jewellery, it pulls the look together from head to toe.


Up Next: I Went to France and Saw Everyone Wearing These 5 Basics on the Streets of Paris

This post originally appeared on Who What Wear US. 

Associate Editor

Sierra Mayhew was always destined to work in fashion, but she didn't know it at first. Growing up with no choice but to wear a rotation of school uniforms and activewear, her love for fashion really blossomed when she moved away for college and was able to finally define her very own personal style. Shortly thereafter, she interned at Elle magazine and instantly knew that editorial was for her. After graduating from the University of Notre Dame, she worked for ShopBazaar, contributing regularly to, and finally made her way to Who What Wear, where she is an associate editor. When she’s not working, you can catch her always trying to catch a flight, rollerblading through New York City traffic, or exploring the latest luxury vintage boutique.