Article by Meredith Keeve a.k.a The Wandering Parisian
French women are known for their nonchalance and style, one certainly does not imagine them in tragic contemplation of their closets trying to determine what to wear.
So here are three tips to get you out the door in a timely manner, or negotiate the explosion of garments in your obviously-too-small cupboard.
- Monochrome plus
A single color, most of us will head toward all black, but certainly all white or all beige or all navy could work. Find t-shirt or blouse and same color trouser or jean. No, it doesn’t matter if they are not the same texture or fabric, its actually better.
Throw alternate color jacket on top. If you are feeling particularly inspired add a scarf. That is it.
And do not be afraid of unusual combinations, a black jacket over navy is fantastically chic, (you can google Virginie Mouzat, French Vanity Fair’s fashion editor, she does black and navy and dark chocolate brown with both black and navy and it is fabulous)
- Variations on a theme: Black and White plus
Same as before, but start with black skirt or trousers, add white blouse or t-shirt and a colored jacket. Again, scarf or other accessory as you prefer.
- Variations on a theme: Color Block
You can work a color block theme if you have a good eye, and some practice. Obviously for a nautical theme you can do red, white and navy, but in real life you will want to stick with neutrals, black/white/grey or grey/white/camel; three shades of grey from anthracite through charcoal to pale can work very successfully. The more daring of you might go black/white/canary or charcoal/white/pumpkin. You may want to try this out beforehand the first time if you are going into unfamiliar colour territory…
Super Streamline your Shoes
At one point, I edited my shoe wardrobe down to black, brown and white sneakers.
Yes, there were a couple of pairs of summer espadrilles that were coloured, or patterned, but my ten month working wardrobe shoes; leather or suede pumps, flats, heels, boots, loafers – all of them black or brown. Simplified dressing immensely.
And if you wear tights/pantyhose/stockings a sheer ‘linen’ shade (slightly off white) gives you a sophisticated edge but goes with either black or brown. Steer clear of anything tan or nude, VERY old fashioned. Shades of gray also work with black shoes, and opaque tights with boots can be an excellent cold weather solution.
And think how much simpler it is to not have to search for the ‘right’ colour.