What Do You Struggle With?

how to dress

 

Let’s talk about you today!

 

Being French and living in Paris, getting well dressed always seemed to me like as a game (when I was younger) or as an obvious « duty ».

Then, when travelling or just observing women in touristic places, I noticed that a large majority of these women coming from all over, didn’t really pay attention to what they wear or may be didn’t know how to do dress at their best…

Was it because they didn’t feel the necessity to improve it? Was it because they never been taught about it?

I guess that if you read this blog today, you feel concerned about what you’re wearing. So tell me today:  Why do you feel like learning more about dressing at your best?

– Is it for your job?

– Is it to feel better?

– Is it to save time in the morning?

– Is it because something important changed in your life?

– For some other reasons?

Give me your feedbacks in the comments below, I want to know you better!

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59 Comments

  1. I like it to get ideas, to learn, to get inspiration. Like the style…here in Holland i miss the aspect style…

    • I notice how French women dress and yet the effect is simple and elegant at the same time. I am a little overweight and short so I need to dress to put forward my best feature and emphasis my better points without going over the top. I have a sister who dresses beautifully and she gives me a great deal of advice. I garner my information from people who know what to wear and how to wear. It is not how much a garment costs it is what you ultimately do with it. I love your website.

    • I have always admired the style of the French lady – those classics pieces that speaks volumes – I find it hard to be ‘casual’ in my dressing – plus the fact that not so many people dress to go out shopping – they are in jogging pants and trainers and that is a horrible look – especially when you are a mature lady – like me…..I would like to try casual – but would need guidance to get it right…….

      • I think you’re right Denise, you should try. No matter how other people dress ;)

    • Growing up I would see girls who could pull-off the look of scarves and sunglasses and I loved their style, but could never put my finger on how I could get the same look without looking out of place, now after reading your blog on the styles of French women, I know now what I gravitate towards timeless, classic STYLE that is the epitome of of the French Woman! Realizing about myself saves me money. I have learned to concentrate on the foundational pieces that never go out of style, making clothes shopping more fun and less expensive and so very rewarding! I feel better in my skin and clothes as a result, I can’t thank you enough Cecile

      • Thank you, Sammie! But remember, though, classic style but not boring, classic with a twist ;)…

  2. I think it has something to do with age. As I get older, I find that I can no longer wear the clothes that I used to wear in my 20s or early 30s. More and more, I dislike the rigidity of corporate dress code for work. I don’t want to dress like a middle age school mum on weekends or ‘the mother of the bride’ for formal events. I want a look that is flexible and stylish but also comfortable. I also want to do more with less and make good use of the quality pieces in my wardrobe.

  3. Good Morning Cécile

    I so admire the style and elegance of some french women and now that I live permanently in France I would like to take on that style for myself. I need to dress in such a way to make the most of myself so obviously advice and guidance is much appreciated. However, I do find the french sizing quite difficult. Having a typically british figure I do sometimes find a problem buying french clothes so often resort to journeying back to the UK for my clothes shopping but I never seem to achieve the « french look ». So – help please.

    Sophie

  4. I just really like the classic style they have opposed to the revealing and kiddish outfits I see where I am from. For my age it is how I’m « suppose » to dress, but I’m more drawn to the classic style to have a more mature appearance but still casual and functional!

  5. I admire the simplicity and elegance of the French dressing. I am not a fan of loud prints and gaudy jewelry. I am very small and find that « effortless » style suits my size and personality very well.

  6. I was brought up to believe that looking your best was somehow frivolous and not for serious minded women. I now know how wrong that view is but I feel that I have missed out on years of learning…….I look back on some of my (expensive) mistakes and just cringe! Also I have a disabled child and I need to be able to look good quickly and with minimum fuss. Your website has been really helpful for this, so thank you!

  7. I can relate to many of the responses already – I’m petite and wish to be more organised in my wardrobe. I love neutral colours and find a French style has tightened up and tweaked my appearance no end. I love the seemingly effortless style of French women, especially those of a ‘certain age’!

  8. I love the classic style and simple elegance of the clothing. I love the accessories that are always so beautifully done. It seems that achieving that look should be easy but I have not been successful. Your help will be appreciated very much.

  9. As I am getting older I want to look smart but not dressy, I love the simple elegance which French women do so well.

  10. It’s not just the clothes of French women that I admire but also that inner confidence that gives them such allure. I am no longer young – I’m 72 – but I am still enjoying learning about style simply because I feel so much better when I know I am looking my best. It’s a question of self-respect and personal pride rather than vanity. And that’s what French women convey in their style and their attitudes. They also know how to emphasise their good points. English women tend to focus on their bad points and worry about them. I have a large bust and short legs and have always felt depressed by them. It’s only recently that I have learned to be grateful for my smooth, unlined skin, good teeth and hair that has not gone grey.

    I love your blog, Cécile! It is so positive, encouraging and non-judgemental.

    I love simplicity and quality in clothes. I love the coherence of French style where nothing jars but each item enhances the whole.

  11. Hi Cecile,
    I like reading your articles because you share tips on how to dress more elegant. French fashion brings out the best in a woman, it is so feminine that I think every woman falls in love with it. I wrote down on a piece of paper color combinations which you recommended in a post, and I look at it before choosing clothes to wear every day. Thanks for helping me be more elegant.

  12. I have never been to France but read a book from the library on how French women dress and live and really want to be like that! I am entering a new phase in my life and desire to live simply, elegantly and to enjoy my friends and food—-not just live a rush-rush, eat and dash kind of existence. I have no idea of how to accomplish this but want to learn how.

    Thank you for your helpful site.

  13. Waow! I didn’t expect so many answers ! Thanks to all of you! I can see that you are very enthusiastic about learning more about French dressing and I am really pleased about it because I am preparing a good surprise to help you.

  14. Cecile,
    Thank you for asking. In my life, I am involved in so many things. I may need to go to the Gym, then to work and by evening meet someone for dinner or go play Tennis. I need a flexible wardrobe, When I look at French women, I want to say, « You look beautiful ».
    Not, « I love your handbag, your dress, or your jewelry ». The women who care, always look so « Put Together », like the instruments in an orchestra. It seems with the French way of dressing, each element on it’s own is simple, but when they all come together a work of art is created. Is it because women in France stick to a few basic colors? Not only their clothes are well coordinated, but they can look « drop dead » Gorgeous » with a tussled hair. I have always wondered how French women carry themselves with such grave and style.

  15. I love fashion, but in a way that is elegant and personal. I have always been fascinated with developing and evolving my style.

    I live in Chicago and have been to Paris only once so far. I admire the understated beauty and timeless sophistication of the French style.

    I love your blog and I am inspired by many of your posts.

  16. Hello Cecile

    I am so pleased to have made your acquaintance. The reason I am interested in French fashion, now that I am retired, I have more time on my hands and I have always been intrigued by the way French women dress and carry themselves.

    All my life I have dressed « Neat and Tidy » and I want more and more for me is your way! I have kept slim through yoga and although people often say « I look Nice » what’s Nice?

    I await with anticipation your « Surprise » for us.
    Elizabeth

  17. Every time I have been to France I have admired the put together look of everyone. It always seems so elegant and easy but it is difficult to accomplished. I am small and it is difficult for me to wear most fashions. However most French women appear to be very fashionable no matter what size they are. Their clothes always seem right for their body type. How do they do it?

  18. Dear Cecile,
    I enjoy reading your articles so much:) as an academic and a working mum, I really admire the spirit of French style: simple, elegant and effortless. Your tips really save my time in the morning, shorten my shopping time, and also help me to manage the space of my small closet.

    Thank you:) xxx

  19. Just found you blog and I love it! Trying to have a minimal closet with maximum outfit options. The simplest and elegance of French style could really help me achieve that!

  20. Bonjour! On my very first trip to Paris in 2014 I was struck by the way the majority of women were dressed. I already felt that I was at a crossroads « agewise » in my own life and it helped me notice what I thought stood out between these women versus what I am accustomed to in California. It was everything from hair, make-up, and fashion. The main ingredient to me was simplicity with elegance. I enjoy all the material you share with us Cecile. Merci-

  21. I like simple solid colors because it is easier to get dressed and looks more sophisticated. I almost always get rid of clothes that have complicated patterns. I feel Americans like to show a lot of skin, which in my opinion looks a bit unsophisticated. French women dont seem to care about trends, these seem into individual style, not what everyone else is wearing.
    Thanks for this blog! I love it.

  22. Living in France each summer, I see the way French women dress and just seldom seem to be able to match it. I’m of a certain age, but my sense of style went out the window as I aged. Nothing I put together seemed to reflect me, I’m fit, healthy, love travel, a little heavy, and do not like a ‘too tidy buttoned up look’, but I looked frumpy. When I shopped with friends, I ended up looking like them. So, here I am, still trying to find my own ‘style’ and I think I’m getting there slowly through your help Cecilia. I really appreciate receiving the information and can’t thank you enough. I agree with many of the other postings they reflect exactly what I feel.
    Thank you so much.

    • Thank You Catherine. I really appreciate :) Please, keep trying to find your own style.

  23. I admire the Frenchwoman’s simple yet sophisticated style. It is practical for city living and they don’t look like they tried to hard. :-) I appreciate the ease and sense of what looks good on them – what to subtly accentuate. The attention to quality over cheap, mass produced quantity. I aim to have a smaller, simpler wardrobe full of pieces that flatter my figure, are durable and timeless, and project a quiet confidence of who I am as a woman.

    Thank you for your blog, Cecile, I enjoy it.

    • Thank you Jessica, I enjoyed reading your comment! Dressing for improving confidence that’s all the blog is about.

  24. I think it has more to do with the confidence and grace that French women embody. I believe these are the root of « French chic », nothing is more beautiful. I’m hoping to find and embrace these in myself. American women « shop » as an activity, rather than attend theater, visit museums, take classes for the sake of learning. I want to look and feel elegant, beautiful and chic, while participating in activities other than shopping!

    Thank you for asking!

    Tamara

  25. Hello, just found your website and love it. I am a young at heart mature lady!!! all of the above could apply to me. I am a bit overweight but like to dress well. Hate that frumpy British look. Find these articles so uplifting. By the way I am from Scotland.

  26. Hello, I stumbled across your website and am loving your posts, they resonate so well with me at the moment as I am going through a transition in my life. My style sense is changing. Shopping initially for fashion labels then getting lost in motherhood, style seemed to go out the window. I am looking for what best suits me for where I am in my life now without looking dowdy or frumpy. The casualness of dressing here in Australia especially when it comes to going out is not for me. Your blog is a great resource to get me thinking and planning…Thank you.

    • Hello Janine, nice to read you from Australia! You’re right: becoming a mother change a lot of things, even the way we feel about dressing. At this particular period, we often consider wearing fashionable clothes as less important (we have other priorities). But as you said, you don’t want to look dowdy or frumpy. That’s why it’s so important to understand your own needs, to know what are your best features, what is your silhouette type, all these details that will help you finding your own very personal style. The one that you can count on a lifelong… I’m so glad if I can help you with the blog to see things more clearly ;)

  27. Hi Cecile,
    I don’t struggle with anything!I came across your website whilst googling Parisian chic/style which i love.It would be marvellous if you published a book.I’m not into pdf/e-books,
    Best wishes
    sheila

    • Thank you Sheila! A book is a next step… Meanwhile I’ll keep posting ;)

  28. Bonjour Cécile! Mon nom est Émilie. Récemment, j’ai recouvré mon héritage français. Je peux parler la langue, mais maintenant je veux ressembler à une femme française. Most of my clothes look cheap, no matter how I accessorise. I want to feel confident and good about how I look, elegant and chic. And now that I am a Maman, I want to look more lol an adult, not so much like the little girl I have looked like before with my Star Wars tshirts and hair ribbons. Il est temps de changer! Merci, Cécile! À bientôt!

    • Bonjour Emilie, welcome on the blog. I hope it helps in your clothing move! Let me know if you have specific questions. A bientôt;)

  29. I recently turned 60 and am struggling to find clothes I am comfortable in. I don’t want to dress like I am trying to keep up with my beautiful daughter’s or look older than I am. I enjoy life like many of the women reading your blog and long to find a style that I can call my own. I look forward to reading you articles and discovering a new way of thinking about clothes. Merci.

    • You’re right Ros! Finding the right balance between dressing like a teenager or looking 10 years older can be tough…But if you manage to find your own style, it can become really fun to get dressed. Have you ever been on that blog « Advanced Style »? It’s full of great examples of stylish aged women. And if you need more help, you’ll find a whole chapter in my Training Program about « Dressing your age » (clothes, make-up, what to wear and not..).

  30. hello from athens, greece ! love your site & your style tips ! am 56 years old & i appreciate all the advice. keep up the good work !

  31. After years of living and working in NYC, I now live in Southern California. Plus, I’m close to 60 years old. I’m in reasonable shape and I take excellent care of my skin. I would like to dress with casual flair that is appropriate for my age. I admire the way older women dress in Italy and France.

    • Hi Kimberley from California: such a cool, peaceful and nice area!.. I’m sure you changed your dressing habits since you live there… Still, even if it becomes more casual, it’s a good thing to remain attentive to your style ;)
      You can have a look at this older post and you’ll also find a whole chapter about dressing your age in the Training Program.
      If you have other questions, just ask me. I’ll be glad to help.

  32. Hi Cecile! I just want to look classy, elegant and chic. But as a woman at a certain age I want to learn how to avoid looking dull, boring and older than I am. I hope you can help me. Greetings from Jette Anna, Denmark

    • Hi, Jette Anna. It’s really nice to hear from you, from Denmark. I’ll be happy to read your appreciation about the e-book you’ve received. Does it help?

  33. I would like more confidence in my choice of clothes. I do try and follow the French way of dressing but do still buy too many clothes , many of which I end up not wearing a lot. I suppose I want to be more discerning and also know how to accessorize well.x

    • Well, Claire, congratulations you clearly see what’s going wrong for you and what you should still improve. That’s a first important step. To go further, you need to know you better and what will work and look perfect on you. I’m sure I can help you. And you’re right accessories are also a clue!

  34. Hi Cécile.
    I stumbled across your blog by accident and I’m glad I did.
    I am a college student with limited wardrobe options and a limited budget.
    I try to look put together and spend hours putting together an outfit, I usually receive compliments on my outfits but I want to look elegant and chic without trying too hard and I want to create and maintain a signature style.
    I am thin and tall and prefer modest clothes.

    • Hi Sherry, I’m very happy to welcome you here. I’m sure you’ll find few good addresses to help you imagine new beautiful outfits in a limited budget!

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