Posts Tagged ‘fashion’

Paris QuickPics: Couture Moments

September 11, 2011

Retro is always in; in the ET closets, that is..

The Experienced Travelers aren’t poised on the cutting edge of fashion, but we certainly appreciate the style gene in others – especially Parisians.   Here are a few couture moments to enjoy—

Les chaussures for sale in the Marais.

With a little courage and a good sense of balance, you can be stylishly shod.  The ETs’ admired the audacity of these shoes, shortly before our vertigo kicked in.  Young Frenchwomen wear them, and what’s more amazing, they traverse the cobbled streets at an alarming speed.  You’ll still see older elegant ladies in sensible pumps, but if you want to live dangerously in style, these are the ones for you.

Perfect for your next Royal Wedding but beware high winds

Parisians are not great hat-wearers, but that’s not to say you can’t statisfy a hankering for a stylish topper in the rue St-Louis en Île.   Melinda –  clearly the au courant ET – hurried into the crowded shop for a look round.  The proprietress had everything from simple sunhats to more extraordinary creations that perform no observable “hat” function.  Our Melinda emerged in a dandy white straw number to keep the bright sun out of her eyes so she could see shop windows more clearly.  It was a very successful detour!

Poodle hats? Even Toby the Boy Prince would draw the line at this.

It’s no surprise that there are clothing stores throughout Paris. A casual stroll will take you by numerous fashion establishments that beg for further exploration.

Fashion for the rest of us in the rue Mouffetard

The ETs are strong believers in buying quality – even if it means bringing home fewer goodies.  But sometimes a girl wants something cheap and cheerful, and Paris has clothing stores that cater to every whim.

Melinda (in her fetching new hat) eyes some comfy cotton pants in the rue Mouffetard

Telltale racks of cotton clothing in a street market are a sure sign of less expensive goods that are made for Found Money – treat yourself to something!

Shop window in the rue St.-Sulplice - there's are those scarves again

We found several interesting windows in the streets between Pl. St-Germain and St. Sulplice.  The French are crazy for scarves, as these warm weather ensembles demonstrate.  In fact, the dominant fashion accessories we observed were scarves and dark tights with funky boots.  We can do the scarves, but funky over-the knee boots…oh dear me.

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We're pleased that the French maintain their interest in lingerie

Ladies, there are opportunities galore to take home some new lingerie.  The ETs admired the multitude of styles and colors, but gone are the days when our figures would accommodate such ambitious infrastructure.

Even an 18th century fashionista has choices

Even more dramatic dressers can find something to take home with them.  This period clothing store near the Odeon metro stop had the ETs wishing and hoping for an invitation to a masked ball.

Nurse demonstrates functional fashion at work

But it all comes down to what works for you.  The ETs will  never be fashion doyennes but after a few of these kirs, we’ll rise above the disappointment and enjoy the couture parade as it passes by!

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La Mode Parisienne

October 13, 2010

La Mode Parisienne

Experienced Travellers watch the whirl of life around them.  Though I’m not a fashionista, here are a few observations about what people are wearing – and buying in Paris.  

Everyone carefully orchestrates their clothing, shoes and makeup, even to run the shortest errand.  It is a matter of national pride that the ensemble is right – whether it’s understated elegance or chic grunge.

Count the coats in this picture. It was in the high 60s and yet the coat is paramount.

Jackets and coats – preferably leather –  come out immediately following the rentree in September.  And wool scarves by early October.   No matter that the sun is blazing and it’s 75 degrees, the coat and scarf make a statement to the world, and they are mandatory attire. 

The legs matter!

Stockings and tights were a prominent accoutrement.  Ladies of every age and build made the most of them.  They were often the only splash of color or design.   And I saw lots of black tights under knee-length jersey tops finished off with a sporting pair of boots.  Lots and lots of boots on the streets…

They are all made for walkin' - and showing off those hose

What amazes me is the number of small, independent clothing shops featuring one or two designers, particularly in the Marais and around the Place St. Germain.  Each shop has a unique style and the clothing is paired with jewelry, handbags and accessories.  It’s a “one stop outfit” in an artisinal style.   ETs like this strategy because it gets you to the cafe faster.

That certain "je ne sais quois"

I loved this twirling shoe diplay in the Marais.  Gentlemen if you’re in the market for a red shoe with a chunky heel, there are plenty in stock.

Red shoes at morning / sailors take warning

Any style works, as long as it’s well-executed.  In this case, if you’re got it; flaunt it.  Jacket.  Boots.  Handbag.  It’s all there.

Retro works!

So how do ETs decide what to pack for Paris?  They are resigned to the truth.  They’ll never look like French ladies, so comfort is paramount, and black is best.  But that doesn’t mean a girl can’t shop for a dishy new jacket and top while she’s in Paris.  Besides, it’s research for the blog.  

If Foucault were alive today, he would be studying the physics of platform stillettos on cobbled streets.  And he’d be a happier man for it!

No matter what they wear, or what they're doing, Parisienne women are chic


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