Parisian Chic

It's been said a million times: "French women are so chic." As a fortunate traveler this summer, I'm lucky enough to be spending time in my favorite city, Paris. I'm conscious of what I wear, as I want to make sure I dress accordingly and on-par with the locals.

During my daily promenades, I've noticed several fashion consistencies: Les femmes don't wear a lot of prints, they wear scarves of all kinds in all types of weather, they don't wear a lot of makeup or jewelry, and they don't carry huge handbags. As a matter of fact, I learned to spot a tourist from a  mile away: she's the one carrying an enormous purse.

It seems that French women created the term, "Less is more", and, evidently, the style and size of one's handbag in Paris is no exception. I see a lot of cross-body bags, small shoulder bags, and medium-to-large sized totes as well. With that being said, French women use totes for practical purposes, such as carrying groceries and various items picked up throughout the day. And unlike in my part of the world, (Southern California), I don't see the ever-present Louis Vuitton bag.

Quality seems to be the standard-bearer for many French women, too, as they appear to enjoy wearing the best that they can afford, even if it means a minimal selection of clothing and accessories. They'd rather have just a few fabulous pieces to wear or a single amazing handbag instead of a closet filled with items of all shapes, sizes and questionable craftsmanship.

All this observation allows me to to understand a little more about French women. They prefer basic colors, they avoid trends, they wear complete ensembles, and they look for quality in clothing and handbags.

I'm all for that. Well-made clothing and handbags seem to always make us feel good when we wear them and carry them. We naturally gravitate again and again toward those items in our closets that are of higher quality than others.

The French lesson here is, buy yourself the best you can afford, and wear it as often as it makes you feel good. And if that means almost everyday, then so be it. If feeling good about the way you look everyday is the result, I say go for it.