How to Dress Like a Parisian - On a Budget

January 31, 2018

Why I decided to start this article? Am I a huge fan of this whole Parisian hysteria? Yes and no. I have lived in France for almost two years, visited Paris many times, so when I saw my Insta feed bombarded by photos of "How to Be Parisian Wherever You Are" book by Anne Berest, Audrey Diwan, Caroline de Maigret, and Sophie Mas I decided it was time to start this article. Illustrations by yours truly.

I have lived in France for almost two years while studying Fine Art at the European Academy of Art in Brittany and completing my Bachelor's Degree. Rennes to be precise, 1hour and 37 minutes with the TGV to Paris to be more precise. It wasn't my first time in France or Paris, I've visited it many times, from South to North and from rural areas to big cities. I adore France. I love its cuture, its food, its people, its joie de vivre, the  the architecture, the books, the magazines, going to the marché (it truly feels like a ritual), the paved streets, the everything. Why do I live in London now? I do not know - chasing dreams perhaps. But in my opinion, France is incomparably more beautiful than the UK, I mean it's pointless just getting me started. Everything is simply better. 

French women have an innate beauty that can't be compared with anything else. It's in the way they move, talk, in the way they hold their cigarette and smile, in the way they wear their clothes and perfume. It's quite a task to believe you can get to be a little Parisian just by wearing few clicheistic items and throwing all your makeup in the bin. Except the lipstick of course. It's much more than that, and for those of you who haven't had the chance to visit Paris yet, the Parisian aren't like those you saw in the movies, with a fresh baguette under their arm, a stripy top and a red beret, whistling and saying "bonjour" to everybody. They are complex people just like all of us, with a sense of beauty and elegance, "la classe" how I like to call it that can't be equaled. No matter what they say or wear, no matter how they look like, they are confident, elegant, and hence the indescribeable beauty of Parisians. 

So far, so clear. I adore France. Seeing the above mentioned book all over Insta (no, I don't own it and haven't read it yet) brought back many memories, all sweet as a crème brûlée on a Sunday morning. So I decided to share with you, from what I have lived and seen in my time spent in Paris, few easy outfits, all very Parisian. So for those of you who are crazy about the Parisian way of living and dressing, but do not have a generous budget to get started, do not worry. The outfits I  put together all feature pieces from Zaful, some replicas some not, but honestly, you will be able to look as Parisian as it gets. If you love this article, I can put together another one, with other pieces, from high street retailers and designer if you feel those are better. Just comment below and let me know.


A minimal, casual outfit perfect for day. From left to right: High Waisted Jeans| Black Bag | Stripy Mules | White Tee

A more sophisticated approach, perfect for long walks, hot coffees and croissants enjoyed together with your partner or best friend. From left to right: Red Blazer | Cat Eye Sunnies | Patent Mules | Wrap Dress 
Simplicity at its best. Just add a big straw bag and you're ready to hit the marché. And do some shopping. From left to right: Blue Dress | Scarf | Pleated Mules | Faux Suede Trench Coat

How can I talk about France without mentioning the LBD (little black dress)? Wear it without makeup, except a bold red lip, with a messy chignon, precious shoes, an oversized blazer and a simple handbag. From left to right: Black Dress |  Round Handbag | Satin Mules | Double-Breasted Blazer

Illustrations: myself
Photos: Zaful

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