Sunday, April 01, 2007

Parisian Chic

Hi She She, Even though I'm in my early 50s, I still care about style. I'm going to Paris at the end of May for a business trip with my husband & will be there for a week and a half. What should I take to wear so I will look nice but not stick out. My daughter studied in France for a semester & she said that you could always tell the Americans because they dressed in such bright colors all the time. I'm thinking of taking lots of black & white with just a little color. I'll be doing mostly touristy, casual things but want to look nice. I'll be in Cannes, Monaco, Paris & maybe London. I also want to take as little as possible. My enjoyment will diminish if I have to carry too much luggage. Thank you!

You lucky, lucky lady - springtime in Paris and all that! And I am so very glad to hear that style is important to you. I am of the personal opinion that style should never be relegated to the back seat of life. The day that one stops caring about fashion, style, shopping and shoes is a very sad day indeed, one that I hope never to see!

You are definitely on the right track as far as packing goes. Keep it simple, yet stylish. The best way to do this is to decide on a basic neutral color to build your travel wardrobe around. Because of the season, springtime, I would advise against making black your base color. I would suggest khaki, tan, or navy as a base and go from there. However, a great LBD is a necessity, as it will take you to dinner, the theatre or a great night on the town in any cosmopolitan city.

Choose items of clothing that will travel well, meaning do not wrinkle easily and are easy to clean. A couple of pair of trousers in khaki or tan, two pair of nice jeans (or navy trousers), and a skirt (perhaps two, as well as the LBD mentioned earlier. I would also take a gorgeous wrap dress. The weather in Paris in May is still a bit iffy, so you will want to layer your clothing. A blue blazer to wear with the khaki and tan trousers and a lighter neutral colored blazer to wear with the jeans or navy trousers. I would also pack a couple of lightweight cashmere sweaters which can be layered under the blazers. This is where you could add a pop of color. Perhaps a rich red or a deep jewel-toned saffron yellow. Add a couple of white and/or cream silk tee shirts and your basic wardrobe is complete. I like to wear tee shirts instead of button-down blouses because they are so much more travel friendly and can be rinsed out in a hotel sink if need be.

Shoes are key to your travel success. You will be walking miles and miles, I guarantee, so take shoes which are stylish, but comfortable at the same time. A couple of pair of chic flats for those touristy little side trips and a pair of killer slingbacks or pumps for those romantic evenings.

As far as handbags go, I would opt for a nice, roomy tote or perhaps even a leather backpack style bag. One that has plenty of room for all your girly necessities and a camera. When I travel, I only take ONE handbag with me. That gives me the perfect excuse to pick up another one as a travel souvenir! (And what girl wouldn't want to return home with a genuine Parisian handbag?) Another great travel souvenir? Silk scarves. They can be tied on the handles of your handbag for a punch of color, draped stylishly around your neck, tied around your hair à la Grace Kelly or even given as gifts to the friends at home.
Best of luck and have a fabulous time!

1 comment:

GlamSpree said...

GREAT advice! My friend is leaving for Paris this Friday, I will definitely pass it along!