We love the spirit and mythology behind Bastille Day (though perhaps not the corresponding violence, but all revolutions come at a price). But to be honest, part of our love of the holiday comes from our obsession with all things French. This includes, but of course isn’t limited to, men’s French fashion. Surprisingly, you can dress with some staples of the always flawless look of the French man without looking too much like the dreaded Euro trash. How can you look a little more refined and, dare we say it, Parisian, without having to go back and study too many books on French style? We have five tips to get you there.
Tip Number One: Think Slim Fit
American styles tend to err on the side of, let’s admit it, baggy. Parisian styles, on the other hand, are all about the slim fit. This is true for both your jacket and your pants. You don’t need to emulate Chris Colfer’s character on Glee with the ultra slim look, but put away the comfort ride or one-size-too-large so that you have room to move jacket and tailor items to fit you properly. Don’t think that you may not have a body fit for a slim fit look, either. With proper and professional tailoring, slim fit pants and jackets look just as good on larger or more muscular body types as they do on runway model types. Put away the big sizes and choose well-tailored, appropriate slim sized.
Tip Number Two: Not So Much with the Tie
In America, a tie is the final stroke to just about any well-put together outfit. But you won’t see many ties on the streets of Paris or elsewhere in France. Opt for open-collar or go with the standard French accessory for men, a scarf. Your tie will clearly mark you as an American. That’s not necessarily a bad thing, but there’s a lot to be said for the French option of dressy and tieless.
Tip Number Three: Know the Brands
The French aren’t wearing Abercrombie and Fitch any more than we’re wearing some of the most popular brands for men in France. If you want to look like you know a little something about French style, here are five men’s style brands to have on your radar.
Tip Number Four: No Bold Colors.
If you’re familiar with the Jan Leslie collection, then you know that any fashion requirement that includes the phrase “no bold colors” makes us a little sad. But the French style at present is decidedly monochrome. A few well put together sober basics are the staple of the French men’s style. Yes, we love English Enamel here at Jan Leslie. But you should opt for something in a more neutral tone instead when channeling your inner French.
Ombre Everywhere. Ombre is trending everywhere right now, so make sure that your cuffs are on-trend and in-style. These cuff links create a detailed accent piece with ombre inserts of mother-of-pearl stones. For a more natural look, choose Taupe (shades of white,pink grey and taupe) or Grey (shades of black, white and grey)
Tip Five: The Go To Euro Tip. No White Tennis Shoes.
Nothing marks you as an American more to any European than white tennis shoes, and this is even more true if you’re trying to channel your inner Frenchie. Opt for an any other option – at all. No matter how hard you try to channel French style, it will be a bust if you pair it with bright white tennis shoes.
Photo Credit: Ben Raynal via Flickr