I successfully resisted temptation to buy clothes/home goods throughout the season of Lent, despite valiant efforts by Gilt Groupe daily e-mails to tempt me. Hooray.
After a couple days of deep rumination, I think I've cracked the secret to French street style. Oh yes, everyone knows French women pretty much invented chic, and that they live and breathe fashion the way ordinary human beings have to eat food just to survive. Everyone knows they don't get fat. And everything they do, from walking down the street to buying bread to smoking a cigarette, oozes elegance.
- An "undone" or even underdone quality: One thing I notice is that American fashion is incredibly over-accessorized. Just look at that recurring section in InStyle where they put together outfits that are supposed to go with different kinds of outings/occasions. Bangles, earrings, necklaces, sunglasses, watches, etc etc etc. Geez, man.
Ease: They never seem to think too hard about it. With the exception of skinny jeans, they seem to prefer flowy and organic shapes comfortable enough to wear all day.
- Proportion & fit: Classic cuts, and everything judiciously edited, perfectly balanced, as if the outfit was grown on your body.
- Color: Mostly neutral, ranging from black, tan, gray, navy, and hunter green.
- Quality: Fine fabrics, well-shaped silhouettes, good stitching, lovely details.
- Thinness: I was serious. I don't think French women would look nearly as good if they were as fat as Americans.
- Something unexpected: There is usually some small flourish that makes you look twice, either a pop of color or an interesting embellishment.
- Bangs: Yes, hair always looks perfectly mussed, left long and loose.
Minimal makeup, perfect skin: Eyes are lined, smoky, or plain. Lips nude or classic red.
- Black tights: Seriously, it's like every woman in Paris owns about 5 pairs.
- A luxurious handbag and/or a beautiful scarf: That's all the accessorizing they need.
- Fantastic shoes: They really pay attention to shoes and use them to make a statement.
I'm not saying I can, or even will try to, attempt making stuff like this. There must be a reason why these pieces normally retail for $1300 - $4000 apiece (they're between $400-$800 today on GG). But it sure makes a girl dream.
If not for Gossip Girl, I would probably not have known what Erickson Beamon was, nor the fact that the brand was created by two up-start socialites from Detroit (yes, Detroit). Anyway, their audacious designs can soon be purchased from Target! $50 is a lot better than $500, but still - is it a fair price for beads and base metal?
One of my earliest posts was asking people which chullo hat I should buy from Cholosoy's Etsy shop, which featured some of the most lightweight, ugly-awesome chullos I'd ever seen (I got the blue-green one).
Anyone want to venture a guess on how to pronounce that, be my guest.
Navy faux-leather booties, $40, Zara.