A Look You Need to Copy Right Now: The French Girl

Dec 11, 2014


The French girl. We've all wanted to be her at one point or other. Bitten lips, perfectly messy hair, a simple style that somehow, yet, makes a statement. Words that sound like they belong in intimate corners of smokey cafe bars, and a cloud of delicate perfume clinging to her clothes. Quiet and sophisticated, with the ability to eat a croissant without a mess of crumbs down her shirt. As if she and she alone was helping Hansel and Gretel get back home. 

We've all wanted to be her, and at times it's fun to channel your inner Parisian when flicking through your sweaters and vetoing your skirts. And the key to pull it off is to think simple but classic.

In this look I went for a dark color palette, really playing up my black pieces to let the layering stand out in a non-overwhelming way. I started off with a grey turtleneck and layered a plaid pinafore dress on top. Feeling more school girl than French in the ensemble, I reached for a pleated black midi to mature the look, and then tied on a black peter pan collar to add some interest. Then add a beret, black chelsea boots, and a cross body bag, and you're ready for some macarons and chilled white wine.  Oui oui!


DRESS (worn as vest): Urban Outfitters (vintage similar: here, here, here- only $15!)
TURTLENECK: Banana Republic (store similar: here)
COLLAR: c/o Franceys Corner
SKIRT: Thrifted (store similar: here- only $9! | vintage similar: here- in blackhere- in navy)
BOOTIES: TJ Maxx (store similar: here | vintage similar: here)
PURSE: Thrifted (vintage similar: herehere- only $30!)
BERET: c/o Moonchild Vintage (vintage similar: here)

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  1. Haha, having studied in Paris your description is so spot on... They have this chicness that is both understated and natural but subtle and elegant. I think the collar is a bit big, but the hey, what is fashion if youre not a bit over the top and having fun with it right?

    great look


  2. I love the french look!! The beret is so cute!!

  3. Oh this couldn't be more perfect! And you are spot on with French girls having that perfect messy hair - my mouth is constantly agape in awe when I walk past them. The pop of colour from the pinafore is so lovely and really adds that element of Parisian chic. I'm still yet to buy myself a beret - I'm saving myself for when I visit Paris as its not really a thing in the south.

    Cats In Crop Tops

  4. Goodness gracious, Marlen, you look so cute! The beret and collar are so brilliant. You're such a wiz at layering!

    xox Sammi

  5. Every time I wear a beret I have people ask me if I'm channeling a French look. I know I'd never be truly compared to French girl style. I just like berets! I think I wear way too much color for the French look. I really love the layering here though! That pinafore dress works great as a vest and I think I need a simple turtleneck like yours.

    Jamie | PetitePanoply.com

  6. What a fun look! I have never really had the "French girl" fantasy, but I have definitely wanted to go to Paris! This look would be perfect for that!

  7. This is such a cute look! I especialy love the beret on you.

  8. You put together the perfect french girl outfit! I've always liked the idea of wearing a beret, and have almost bought one before on multiple occasions, but I always chicken out!

  9. Ooh yes, I've dreamt of being that girl. More so when I was in Paris. They have such an elegance and nonchalant sense of grace. It's hard to put into words.


  10. Oh, yes, we've all wanted to mirror French style! This outfit is on the ball; everything goes so well together and that peter pan collar is the perfect touch. That pleaded black skirt is an absolute gem too, an ideal length, I definitely want one like that in my closet!

  11. I'm definitely one of those people who wishes they could pull of the French girl style, but I can never manage to do so. haha! I'm so in love with the Parisian vibe of your outfit. I'm also very impressed by your layering skills; that pinafore dress looks lovely as a vest over that turtleneck!


    Sweet Helen Grace

  12. Oooooh la la! Looking sexy and Frenched up :) I love a good beret

    Rachel xx

  13. Love the french girl look. It's so chic! That skirt looks perfect on you, Marlen!

  14. Dress as a vest...I never think to layer a skirt over a dress haha. But I sure love this look. Makes me want to go eat croissants at a cafe in paris (i've never been to europe!!) except I would definitely have crumbs in my lap. I'd be sure to have a napkin down though. hehe.

  15. You look so lovely in this outfit, it's amazing idea to wear dress as a vest :)


  16. Yes please to being as cool as a French girl. I wish I had the hair to pull of a beret like you did!


  17. I don't know why, the very first thought was Nathalie, Gilbert Becaud's song I really like (-: Ur outfit really made me going frenchy ,-)

  18. super:)) xx

  19. Yes... I want to be a Parisian so badly. :(


  20. I love that vest ! What a cute outfit!
    xo ClassToCloset

  21. Just dropping by to tell you- You're totally a hat person. Also that collar is perfect!

  22. I wish I knew how to layer clothes like you without looking like a Marshmallow. Ha ha! I just love this look and I don't know a single gal out there that doesn't want to look like a little French Girl!

  23. Stunning outfit!
    You look adorable in the beret :) Makes me want to get mine out and wear it again.

  24. Love this inspired piece!! Makes me want to go get a beret right now :)

    Chowing Down by the Bay

  25. Just love this look! Your skirt is just lovely :)


  26. I really love this look!!! You look beautiful!
    Melanie @ meandmr.com

  27. There is indeed a certain je ne said quoi about your look! Also- your hair is lovely.

  28. I wanted to be the French girl until I realized I'm not pretty enough. Now I want to be the drag Queen! :D Love this outfit, I basically love every freaking outfit you post. You're that awesome!

  29. this is such a perfect french girl look for you! you look so great. and now i'm in the mood for a french film and some good macarons, haha! xx

  30. The dress with the skirt is genius. It looks like a tucked in vest. Well played, madam. Well played. :D

    - Anna


  31. Oh geez, I love this so much and I've always dreamt of being the French girl. Oui! Loooove that collar!

  32. Love this look.

    Eea P


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