Fashion Forward

When I received the invitation to attend Rosaline Hampton Grand Opening yesterday, I noticed the dress code says Fashion Forward. I think of something new, edgy, raw.

However, I want to come up with a style of my own, Forward means I come up with the idea first.

This is my version and I call it Paris Chic as Parisians are renowned for their style and fashion forwardness.

Want to know why the Parisians are so chic ?

1. Neutrals are Key – This is the color scheme that most of the Parisians live in. You’ve heard it all before – black is slimming, always in style, and versatile – a flattering black sweater or pants/skirt can be dressed down for daywear and easily spruced up for a night on the town. If you can’t stand wearing black, try other neutral colors – like beiges, browns, and creams.

2. Leave Leisure Wear at Home – Leave your hoodies and matching sweatpants, white tennis shoes, shorts and bright colored nylon windbreakers at home.

Elisabeth Fourmont of La Coquette, a Parisian fashion blog, says it best, ‘Most countries fetishise styles only young people look good in, whereas in Paris there are interesting women dressing their age. ‘That’s why designers find Paris so inspiring.’ And always, always look neat: ‘There’s a lot you can’t get away with here,’ continues Fourmont. ‘Wearing a tracksuit and flip-flops to the post office is a form of disrespect.’

Bottom line: Dress your age and dress nicely – you’ll be rewarded with better treatment in cafés, shops and restaurants

3. Make a Statement with Accessories and Scarves – Wear basics that you can mix and match. Dress up your outfits with accessories – necklaces, earrings and scarves. Scarves are ubiquitous in Paris – Parisian women know they are a quick and easy way to pull an outfit together.

They also make great souvenirs. You can usually purchase a few silk scarves in the season’s hottest colors and patterns (usually, a year ahead of trends in the US) for 5-10 euros at the stands outside the Galleries Lafayette or Printemps. Or, splurge at Hermes for a scarf that will last a lifetime (and at 300+ euros/scarf it should).

4. Wear Comfortable Shoes, Not White Tennis Shoes – Invest in shoes designed for walking (Recommended brands are Ecco, Mephisto, or Dansko). One day of climbing steps up monuments and navigating cobblestoned corridors and you’ll understand why these sturdy European brands are so popular among Parisians . Or, wear a pair of flats, loafers or short-heeled boots that have been battle-tested at home for walking.

5. Jeans are OK – Five years ago, we never saw anyone in Paris wearing jeans except teenagers. Today, denim is a growing Paris trend. Jeans are everywhere – upscale restaurants have even lessened their dress codes to admit designer jean clad customers.

The jeans you see on Parisians contain certain stylistic elements – dark, slim fit “skinny jeans”, or slight flare – paired with low-heels or ballet flats for daytime walking and stilettos for going out at night.

6. Don’t Worry About Your Hair and Make-Up – You don’t need to obsess over your hair and make-up. It seems like a contradiction in terms, but Parisian woman tend to favor the “au natural” look. Hairstyles are more unstructured and air dried. You’ll see more long hair pulled back into a casual chignon than elaborately straightened and styled like in the US.

Make-up is minimal with an emphasis on glowing skin (visit any French pharmacy and you will be stunned by the amount of products promising “prefect, pore-free, blemish-free radiant” skin). To quote Laura Mercier, the French creator of a line of cosmetics, “French women are not flashy. They must be subtle. The message must not be, ‘I’m spending hours on my face to look beautiful.”

Parisian cosmetologists caution restraint by choosing one area to highlight – shadowed eyes mean neutral or no lipstick, wear lipstick and keep your eyes untouched, and let your natural skin show by wearing minimal foundation and little blush. For an example, pick up a copy of French Elle and be amazed to see unairbrushed models with minimal make-up. So, “embrace your inner beauty” .

Source : Paris Escapes

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