Style Notes From Paris (Part 2)

Parisian Style: Spring/Summer 2018

We’ve been back home for a couple of days now, and I’ve been going through my notes and photos trying to distill my observations on What They’re Wearing In Paris. (Aside from “a little bit of everything.”) What you see people wearing also depends a great deal on the arrondissement. The 6eme and 16eme are only a short distance apart, but will have very different style norms. We stayed in the 6th near St. Sulpice, which has a more relaxed, eclectic, arty, intermittently Bohemian vibe.

Click here to read  Style Notes From Paris Part 1.

Overall, I’ve seen a few shifts in Parisian style over my last few visits:

  • More oversized pieces. While “volume” has been a global fashion trend for the last few years, it seemed that many Parisiennes were reluctant to give up fitted silhouettes. But now and you’ll see a little more ease, volume and fluidity. Not usually head-to-toe, though; often more voluminous pieces are balanced with more fitted ones within an outfit.
  • More color and pattern. While it might just be the time of year, I did notice that women are wearing more colors and prints overall.
  • Less formality. Denim and sneakers are ubiquitous, and often worn mixed with pieces that are a little bit more polished. But “casual” doesn’t devolve into “sloppy.” Nor do you see a lot of distressed pieces on women over 30 or so. Parisians still look neat and put-together. And there’s thought put into outfits, especially when it comes to color coordination. Everything works together.

Rust Never Sleeps

Paris trends for Spring/Summer: rusty reds. Details at une femme d'un certain age.

One of the more notable trends I observed, both in shop windows and on women of all ages were rust, burnt orange, russet red and ochre shades. I’ve been noticing these colors in many brands’ spring/summer collections here too. But the Parisians tend to wear them in specific ways: most often as pants or a skirt, or in a trench or jacket, or accessories. (All three of the examples above are on the more vivid side. I also saw plenty of more muted rusts but wasn’t able to get photos that showed the color well.)

The color “russet” in the current Eileen Fisher collection (also HERE) is Spot On.

Mural | Anthropologie | Eileen Fisher | J.Crew | Eileen Fisher (Plus) | J.Crew | Eileen Fisher (Plus)

Longer, Fuller Skirts

Pleated floral skirt in a Paris shop window. Details at une femme d'un certain age.

Below the knee, often pleated and/or diaphanous, and worn with a simple tee and maybe a jacket on top. There were a lot of floral prints in shop windows, though when les femmes d’un certain âge did wear these skirts, they were usually a solid color or striped. And yes, they were often worn with sneakers.

J.Crew | Maje | Madewell | City Chic (Plus) | AnthropologieJ.Crew | Eileen Fisher | ModCloth (Plus)

Blue and White Stripes

Paris trends: a blue and white striped dress in a shop window. Details at une femme d'un certain age.

Whether in a dress or top, a blue and white stripe seems to be one of THE prints of the season. (Note the eyelet details on the dress too, saw many pieces with eyelet in shops.)

AYR | Rachel Pally (Plus) | H&M | Eileen Fisher | Eileen Fisher (Plus) |Rails | Caslon | Anthropologie | JJill | Velvet by Graham & Spencer

Straw Accessories

Straw hats and bags, slide sandals at Monoprix in Paris. Details at une femme d'un certain age.

While I saw mostly leather and fabric bags, I did notice straw bags beginning to make an appearance. Totes usually, but also round styles. I spotted a lot of them in window displays, and imagine that as summer kicks in they’ll be a popular choice to pair with lighter summer fabrics. I also noticed a few women carrying Jane Birkin-esque basket bags.

Clare V | Urban Renewal | J.Crew | Novica | Street Level | Sensi Studio | Rebecca Minkoff | Clare V

There were a good number of floral print and wrap dresses in shop windows, but I did not notice very many women our age wearing them. It might have been the weather, the areas we were in, or a combination of both. I’ll probably remember more styles I noticed as I continue going through my photos, and if so will update.

If you are planning to visit Paris this summer, be sure to check out Monoprix for some nice linen pieces and budget-friendly accessories.

Are you seeing similar trends where you live? Which of these would you wear?

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42 Comments

  1. June 11, 2018 / 3:22 am

    I saw the blue and white stripes and rust trend while we were in Provence as well. To me it was very fresh and classic all at the same time. My favorite was a blue and white stripe blouse, white pants and a rust colored sweater around the neck. And as you found, lots and lots of straw everywhere, especially the round straw shoulder bags as you mentioned.

    There’s no where like to France to see the latest trends.
    Sam

  2. GingerR
    June 11, 2018 / 4:01 am

    I like the first photo with the woven jacket and the striped shirt underneath. It’s not the column of color but it’s fresh looking.

  3. June 11, 2018 / 4:20 am

    Oh, goody! I’ve been waiting for your post-trip posts. Thanks for all this.

    In light of these changes, I wonder what Emmanuelle Alt is wearing today. For some time I’ve thought of her as the modern Parisienne in her skinny, black, fitted uniform.

    “Staying current” while being true to one’s style is an interesting tango. 🙂

  4. June 11, 2018 / 4:32 am

    J’adore the full yellow print skirt & denim jacketed!! In which shop window was this (I will be there in two weeks!) ? Merci beaucoup, Susan! kate

    • Susan B
      Author
      June 11, 2018 / 4:47 am

      Hi Kate, I don’t remember exactly which shop it was, but it’s on rue Saint Sulpice, near the Vanessa Bruno store.

  5. Marie Fritz
    June 11, 2018 / 4:54 am

    One thing I loved were the fishnet ankle socks with the wide cropped culottes. With brogues, of course! I ended up buying three pair of anklets at Galeries Lafayette for my cropped pants!

  6. Nancy
    June 11, 2018 / 5:06 am

    Love this post. The clothing is so classic and feminine.

  7. Angela Brill
    June 11, 2018 / 5:07 am

    Susan, I love your posts – making me so excited for upcoming “first” Paris trip in July. I’m poring over them with an eye for the details. Noticed the Chatelles bag and did a little research. Darling shoes! I can’t do a personal shopped trip but could you let us know about any other shops you think we might like?

    • Susan B
      Author
      June 11, 2018 / 5:12 am

      Yes, I’ll be posting some of my favorites later this week. 🙂

  8. Kim
    June 11, 2018 / 5:54 am

    Thanks so much for this!! I’ve been planning my capsule for Normandy, Paris, and Collioure in July and settled on mostly black (b/c easy!!) and included a denim jacket, flowy skirt (black and white stripes), and a flowy dress (black and white dots. I may need to rethink black now!! I was focused on easy of packing and wash/wear fabrics. But I suppose the column of black is a mainstay.

  9. June 11, 2018 / 6:02 am

    I’m glad russet is having a “moment”, since it’s almost always in my wardrobe. I’ve already been eyeing the EF silk tank.

  10. June 11, 2018 / 6:12 am

    I just bought what might be my new favorite item: a simple blue and white striped button down shirt from H&M! But it’s very silky (I think it’s the Modal in it), with sloping shoulders and cuffs that roll up to just the right length. We leave for U.K. today so it’s in my bag!

  11. Dianne
    June 11, 2018 / 6:13 am

    Loving all the Paris window shopping,etc. I always stay in the same area.. which was the hotel where you stayed ?

    • Susan B
      Author
      June 11, 2018 / 6:15 am

      Esprit Saint Sulpice.

      • Dianne
        June 11, 2018 / 4:11 pm

        Just love it. ! that’s were I stay❤️

  12. Lisa B
    June 11, 2018 / 6:30 am

    Love that blue and white striped op with the bell sleeves in the first photo

  13. Anon
    June 11, 2018 / 6:46 am

    Very much like what’s being worn here

  14. jen pankratz
    June 11, 2018 / 7:28 am

    Hi – just wondering what store all the straw items/shoes were from (last picture). Thanks!

    • Susan B
      Author
      June 11, 2018 / 7:32 am

      They were from Monoprix.

  15. Debra
    June 11, 2018 / 8:12 am

    Just read an article in Paris Match that featured straw/wicker bags – thought of you and your half-moon shaped bag.

    I was in Bourges on a hot day and saw many women wearing a cotton tank tee, tight capris (shorter than ankle length) and those wedge-type sandals that you noticed. I saw this style so much that it almost seemed to be a uniform. Most of the pants were black…even on a hot day. Also that day saw quite a few sleeveless, A-line dresses (with those sandals).

    Here in Sancerre one can see a lot of (French) tourists during the weekend and for the most part women wear capris/shorts and matching tops – I would say they’re more focused on comfort vs. style. Will be interesting to see the contrast when we spend time in Paris at the end of the month. In any case, the neutrals I brought are serving me well – you can’t go wrong with black, beige, and navy. I do like those rust pants, though!

    • Susan B
      Author
      June 11, 2018 / 8:31 am

      Thanks! Weather was mostly mild, some rain showers, a couple of warmer days. We missed the big heat wave in Paris, and usually temperatures didn’t get any higher than high-70’sF.

  16. Pam
    June 11, 2018 / 8:41 am

    Oh my – those straw bags from the links you provided brought back so many memories from long ago. I just love them. Last time I bought any, I was living in New Orleans.

  17. CHERYL JOHNSON
    June 11, 2018 / 8:45 am

    Love the paprika/rust trend and the attn to creating an outfit that reads, pulled together, a considered look that isn’t too self-conscious. A learned skill that looks easier to pull off than it is in reality. Also like those pleated, midi-skirts, esp those that are understated, like the J Crew navy one you linked to. I can “see” the simple t with a pleated skirt.

    Do you find women wearing a jacket/cardi/jean jackets with their outfits? I am going to Paris in July and the weather might dictate what I pair with an outfit on any given day.

    Wonderful to read your observations!

    • Susan B
      Author
      June 11, 2018 / 9:21 am

      Hi Cheryl, it definitely is a skill! I did see quite a few jackets on cooler days: jean jackets, bombers, blazers and crisp utility jackets.

  18. June 11, 2018 / 9:23 am

    The red/rust/orange trend has been going on for quite a while, for both women and men, and yes, I still see it (I did a post on it almost exactly 2 years ago).
    Blue and white stripes everywhere.
    Lots of flowy bottoms, often floral–skirts and pants.
    I saw a young woman today at H&M in Toulouse with silver sneakers and a big silver bag, which elevated her jeans and T-shirt outfit. Also saw a mother/daughter pair–the 20-something daughter with a trench coat, entire outfit, including pants and shoes, in shades of tan and khaki; the mother similarly dressed but all in navy and white. Things aren’t matchy-matchy, like Garanimals or those “sets” my grandma used to buy with a top and matching jacket, but they aren’t willy-nilly either.

    • Susan B
      Author
      June 11, 2018 / 1:59 pm

      Regarding the color trends, I remember noticing a lot of what’s often called “Nantucket Red” in France beginning a few years ago. (Like a faded barn red.) On both men and women.

  19. Mary Clifford
    June 11, 2018 / 10:51 am

    Still here in Paris. Am actually in an apartment a few blocks down from St. Sulpice. I have definitely noticed the sneaker trend which has quickly won me over. The sneakers are baskets or tennis and are never running/athletic shoes, we found a made in France brand called Ector which are extremely comfy, but still stylish.

  20. Daniella Karo
    June 11, 2018 / 12:03 pm

    Interestingly, globalism has finally touched the fashion world with denim and American sportswear ubiquitous even in third world countries. The difference is how it’s being put together in practice and the French are the winners. The perfect example is the lovely, flowery, pleated skirt, simple tee and subtly ruffled feminin denim jacket! Brilliant!! If you are still slim and in good shape, regardless of age , wear it!! I will, though I’m not a florally inclined gal and in my mid -seventies!! Plan to wear it while traveling to Eastern Mediterranean.
    Great reporting, Susan!

  21. Kay
    June 11, 2018 / 12:16 pm

    Timely post for me. I’m leaving in two weeks for the summer trip to Savoie to visit the family. This time the whole crowd is going, three generations, so I’m getting an Airbnb in the 5th for our short stay in Paris. We’ll see how that works. As it happens, I had already planned a blue-based capsule wardrobe, so I’m happy to hear blue and white stripes are in. I like to pick up something to wear while in Paris to remind me of the trip. A blue and white striped linen something sounds just right.

  22. Nancy
    June 11, 2018 / 4:26 pm

    Thank you for all the posts from France it’s as though I’m visiting with you. My daughter is there now and I gave her some of your packing ideas – also gave her the mirror with the light which she loved – although she said she was seeing things on her face she’d never seen before – she loved it. Always enjoy your posts – they are so informative and positive.

  23. Michelle D.
    June 11, 2018 / 5:24 pm

    Love, love,love your blog! Visiting Paris for the first time at the end of Sep.and staying in Le Marais.

    What is your favorite Parisian Brasserie Susan?

    • Susan B
      Author
      June 11, 2018 / 5:28 pm

      Thanks, Michelle! That’s a tough question to answer as there are SO many good ones. I really like le Comptoir in the 6th, and Pirouette near Les Halles. Both are casual and convivial, with great food. Chez Monsieur near Place Vendome is also quite good.

      • Michelle D.
        June 11, 2018 / 5:35 pm

        Merci Susan! I will check them out.

  24. Ciel Murri
    June 12, 2018 / 11:27 am

    I would love to find a more feminine denim jacket like the ruffle one in the window. Any ideas where to look?
    This Paris Fashion Report is so fun! When I visit Paris, one of my favorite pastimes is to sit on a bench and watch the amazingly put together French women stroll by. It s always hard to identify the je ne sais quois of it all, but they do have it, that’s for sure!

    • Susan B
      Author
      June 12, 2018 / 11:31 am

      So many people have remarked on both the jacket and skirt that I’ve been looking for some similar options available here. Look for a post soon!

  25. Duchesse
    June 12, 2018 / 2:56 pm

    I saw those longer skirts all over in May (and blogged about it): any woman over 25 in a skirt was not showing her kneecap. So different from the 22-inch skirts that are ubiquitous in North America. It is not only Parisiennes who are well-put together. The men are also far more carefully dressed. No baggy jeans, or dress shirts worn hanging out. There is fit, there is a belt, and it is a good one. Le Duc thought. there was more difference between American and French men, than between women.

  26. June 13, 2018 / 11:40 am

    Blue and white stripes? Check (got loads of that in my closet). The colour “burnt”? Can bright orange do? I bet it can. Then that is a check as well.
    The straw bags hmm.. not much of a fan. Usually too boho for me. Nevertheless I have learned never to say never.
    Greetje

  27. June 14, 2018 / 7:14 am

    I noticed lots of women in sneakers, too. Hope you had a fantastic time a Paris. And hope that our French trips overlap again soon x

  28. June 16, 2018 / 7:50 am

    I absolutely love the styles this year. Blue and white shirts – tick. Straw bags – tick. Leather sandals – tick. Oversize – tick. I have been having a very reasonably priced ball in H&M this year and know that I will continue to wear these items for a goodly while. My new round straw bag with brown leather handles from Dille & Kamilla (bought in Ghent) is my favourite purchase of all.

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