Wear It In Paris: Summer Edition

Summer ensemble with blue and white dress from Halsbrook. Details at une femme d'un certain age.

If I Were Packing For Paris This Summer…

We enjoyed such a fabulous vacation in France, and if it were possible I’d go back in a heartbeat. Part of the fun of a visit to Paris is gazing in the shop windows and observing what stylish Parisians are wearing for the season. Some of the summer style trends I noted during our visit in early June were:

  • Blue and white (stripes and prints)
  • Rusty tones
  • Relaxed silhouettes
  • Raffia and straw accessories

This post created in partnership with Halsbrook. All ideas and opinions are my own.

Above: earrings | cuff | bag | dress | shoes

If you’re planning to travel this summer, think lightweight layers in breathable fabrics. Unless you have a formal event on your itinerary (e.g. wedding or state dinner) leave the high heels and dressy clothing at home. “Smart casual” will be appropriate for almost any venue in any city, including Paris. Aim for looking neat and put-together and you’ll be fine.

Whether you’re headed to Paris or anywhere else this summer, Halsbrook has a great selection of basics, accent pieces, and accessories to make the most of your travel wardrobe. And many of their Spring and Summer items are currently on sale, so it’s a great time to shop for a summer wardrobe refresh. Shipping and returns are fast and free, but don’t hesitate as many popular styles sell out quickly.

Paris trends: ensemble with rust tones and straw accessories from Halsbrook. Details at une femme d'un certain age.

Above: hat | bracelets | tote | sandals | top | pants

Are you traveling this summer? Any particular challenges with packing?

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  1. I took a look at the Halsbrook website and I am officially smitten with the Brochu Walker cardigan! I may have to budget for that!

  2. We spent ten days in Paris in July of 2011 and it was miserably hot and humid. If I was traveling there this summer, I’d pack nothing with sleeves, except a lightweight sweater for the evening. Even the lovely India cotton dress with its long sleeves would have been too warm on our trip. If it turned out cooler than expected, I could always shop the sales!

    1. You never can tell. Paris can be quite cool even in summer, but when it warms up, it just isn’t built for heat and isn’t comfortable at all. In the south, it’s different–the houses are designed to cope with heat, and the climate is very dry, so even higher temperatures remain comfortable. When my brother’s family visited one July, it was unseasonably rainy, and they had to buy sweatshirts in Paris because they were miserable.
      Casual chic is definitely the way to go in France. Being dressy can be hard if you want to do a lot of walking, which, after all, is the best way to see sights. But even when they’re casual, the French manage to look nice.

      1. “You never can tell.” This is so true. We spent the month of June in Paris a couple of years later, and didn’t see the sun for three weeks. It was cold–by Southern California standards, anyway–and it rained every day, and it wasn’t sprinkling. It was real rain. My husband had refused to bring a raincoat so he had to buy one. I’d read the weather reports and did bring mine, thank heavens.

  3. I got an identical pair of espadrilles in Madrid last summer (for $40). Leather insole, excellent quality. If anyone is heading to Spain, check out Casa Hernanz (Calle de Toledo 18)

  4. As always, I love your sartorial edits. Those pearl earrings are on their way. Exactly what I’ve been looking for and didn’t know it. Thanks!

    Also love the simple classic elegance of the Halsbrook look. Those rust pants are amazing and I’ll be searching for their counterpart at my price point.

  5. Weather forecasts can’t be trusted, and it’s not always convenient to buy something during your trip. I always have a plan in case the weather is 10° warmer or cooler than I expect. Layers are the key. Two essentials: (1) a merino tee. A natural “tech” fabric, It is comfortable on its own in the heat and a cozy base-layer when it’s chilly. And (2) a thin stuffs-in-its-pocket wind shell to throw in my purse. On its own or under another jacket, it’s surprising how much warmth it provides. Take it from a Chicagoan – it’s all about wind chill!
    PS Who knew there were so many cute lobster shoes? I think your subconscious is crying out for a trip to New England.

  6. Best idea when traveling to Paris is to take along the minimum to get by and shop there till you drop!….. I always bring along a great Gucci collapsible bag that I bought years ago in Italy when I lived there. It opens into a giant super bag and super light where I cram a ton of stuff. Same when I head for NY CITY. Or for that matter anywhere in the world. Lots of little boutiques with great goodies at good prices.

  7. Love those rust pants! I will be looking for some in a lower price point too. I am going to Cape Cod in July and have been told it can be cool there too. I plan on a couple of light cardigans and a windbreaker type jacket. I have learned that layers are my friend! The only time I have been to Paris was in May of 2012 and it was very cool some days and very warm others. I was glad I had taken sweaters and scarves!

    1. I’m hoping that color finds it’s a way down to better prices points myself.
      The value of seeing it at the high end now and thinking about how it’ll fit in is that when it shows up within my budget, I’ll be able to make my decision promptly while they still have it in my size.

  8. I love the blue & white blouse, it looks cool & comfortable. I love wearing linen in the summer; as hot as it gets here in Mississippi, it’s the best material to keep cool. Another great thing to shop for at this time of year is winter clothing. I bought a camel colored wool blazer yesterday for $30.00!! I had been looking for a blazer like this for our trip to the Netherlands, Belgium & Germany in December (we will be staying on a canal boat in Amsterdam, how fun??). The blazer is structured & the color goes with literally everything. It will also keep you warm on cold flights & give you a pulled together look while traveling without any effort. I enjoy reading your articles everyday, they are always informative.

  9. I welcome any suggestions for my sartorial travel dilemma: we’ve been invited to a wedding at the end of August, in Italy! The wedding venue is in a village in Chianti (the reception is in a castle!). We are of course spending a full two weeks in Italy beforehand, so in addition to my usual travel wardrobe, I will need to pack a fancy (ish) dress, shoes, evening bag and wrap. What does one wear to a 4 pm wedding in Chianti at the end of August?

    1. Chances are it will be pretty warm. I’d go with a simple shift dress, maybe linen or a lightweight silk, and use jewelry and accessories to dress it up. If you go sleeveless, you’ll want to have a light shrug or wrap to cover your shoulders for the ceremony (if it’s in a church).

    2. I live in Tuscany. Yes it will be hot! Also, shoes tend to get very dusty here, and walking surfaces are often uneven. I wouldn’t wear shoes made from a delicate material or with a fragile heel. Enjoy!