Astronaut, firefighter, vet… These are all common answers children give when they're asked what they want to be when they grow up. However, if you were to ask me the same question today, I'd give you a different answer: French. Ahh, to be French and born with je ne sais quoi. I know it's a stereotype, but of all the French women I've met in my life (which, working in fashion, is actually quite a lot), they've all had one thing in common: an effortlessly chic sense of style.
By no means are these women part of a cookie-cutter mould, either: Every single one of them dresses in a completely different manner, leading me to conclude that just by being French, you're blessed with sartorial savvy the rest of us can only try to emulate.
And emulate I will, for I've found 35 exceptional Parisian street style looks that I can't wait to try for myself in 2019—and something tells me you'll want to re-create them, too.
Wear a slouchy blazer over your fanciest dresses to strike the perfect high-low balance.
When buying cover-ups, always opt for the next size up to achieve that covetable oversized look.
Experiment with unexpected colour combinations to create a look that's unique to you.
Give slinky skirts a dressing down with leather accessories and a chunky knit.
Keep waistlines high, as French girls don't really do low-slung trousers.
Pastel hues might seem twee to some, but when slouchy, they can look incredibly cool.
Layering is key for channeling the French aesthetic—the more directional, the better. Follow Tine Andreaa's lead by wearing button-up dresses open over trousers.
Let your personality shine through. Love a particular band? Wear their logo-emblazoned tee under everything from blazers to pinafore frocks.
Consider a white tee, jeans and courts your uniform from here on out.
It's all in the details. Neck ties and layered jewels will take any look to the next sartorial level.
Miniskirts are not just acceptable, they're recommended. Just be sure to keep necklines high and shoes interesting as opposed to sexy.
Although French girls are very much here for accessories, sometimes less is more. Case in point? This simple heart belt worn over black jersey.
Use your fabric choices to your advantage: Contrast edgy finishes like leather and vinyl with softer pieces in satin or velvet.
The clashing prints, the mix of prim and casual pieces, the bright bag… This outfit couldn't be more Parisian if it tried.
Take your most statement skirt, add black boots and a roll-neck or white shirt, and you've just mastered French Fashion 101.
Necklace or earrings—who said you have to choose? Not the French, it seems.
Look for updates on classic pieces to give your outfit the edge. The handkerchief hem on this timeless trench makes it feel so fashion-forward.
Don playful prints with confidence. Chloé's horse motif has become a firm favourite amongst French girls who are fearless when it comes to wearing it.
Re-wear your favourite wrap top as a light cover-up come the summer months. Indeed, this is one to bookmark.
Use white boots to lift any dark ensemble. This is particularly effective during the winter months.
Clashing your colours is easy—especially when you keep your accessories to neutral or black tones.
Can't decide which dress to wear? Throw them both on.
Maxi lengths shouldn't be reserved for formal occasions, as this sleeveless coat proves.
Never underestimate your denim jacket—it can help make any outfit look edgy.
Although made up of various shades, the bag, trousers and coat in this look all feature a dusky undertone which ensures they work seamlessly together. Good to know.
We love how the brown bag (particularly since it's being styled with black shoes) stops this outfit from looking too curated—a French fashion faux pas.
Double denim is totally acceptable—particularly when it's in contrasting hues.
After dark dresses are given a daytime spin with a pair of snake-print boots. Ah, oui.
Parisian's firmly believe you're never too old for a hair bow. We concur.
Wearing one hue top-to-toe is a street style favourite for a reason—it'll instantly pull your look together.
French girls love to spin their coats as dresses.
If clashing your prints sounds too daunting, look for varying sizes of the same motif in the same colour palette and we promise you won't go wrong.
Want to get dressed like a true French girl? Simply follow these six golden rules…
Opening Image: @thestylestalkercom
Maxine Eggenberger is Who What Wear UK’s deputy editor and has over twelve years of experience in fashion journalism. She been creating engaging and elevated style content for Who What Wear UK since 2018, covering runway reports, emerging trends, long-form features, self-styled shopping stories, and columns, including her edit of the best new-in buys. She ensures the highest editorial standards are met across the site, works closely with influencer talent on content initiatives, represents the brand at industry events, and regularly contributes to social media. Previously, Maxine appeared on TV in her own fashion segment and has interviewed countless celebrities—everyone from Victoria Beckham to Oscar winner Lupita Nyong’o.
Prior to Who What Wear UK, Maxine’s career began when, after completing her first-ever internship, she was offered a position on the Look magazine fashion desk. She accepted, leaving university a year early in the process. She went on to become the title's fashion news and commercial content editor, with a stint as InStyle.co.uk’s fashion writer along the way. She later served as Look’s acting Editor in Chief before embarking on a successful freelance career, working with Grazia, The Pool, and Marie Claire amongst others. Maxine works remotely from her countryside home near Edinburgh.
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