Sunday, October 14, 2007

Effortless Chic

Ok, so I want to talk about French women and their style. I had a funny encounter with a group of gorgeous women at the Cafe du Theatre, after they'd caught a concert, while I was enjoying a Grimbergen. They chatted me up briefly about the show, then drank glasses of wine elegantly. This is my favorite kind of French woman, and I could just look at them all day. But, a critique is in order.

Ladies, you're beautiful, you're trim, you're put together. In your forties, you have perfected a kind of jaded, haute couture hotness to launch a thousand ships, but you wouldn't be impressed when the boats came. You're bored and you're lovely and you arch your eyebrows at too much enthusiasm. But I don't buy for even a second that your hair swept itself into that flawless chignon. I don't think you just threw that military jacket over that perfect black dress on and looked like you stepped out of Vogue.

I threw on this hoodie and hat this morning, and I look like a young woman in a hoodie and a hat. That is how throwing things on works. Can we all just let go of the myth of effortless French chic? We all know you're a country that works hard to look like it isn't trying too hard.

Also, just so you know, readers, there are a lot of poorly dressed French people out there. There are a lot of unfortunate sweaters and harem pants and cavalier boots. There are a lot of man purses. The unifying factor seems to be that the French try harder at fashion than Americans do to mixed results. For instance, I saw a woman at Musiques de Rues with her hair dyed an atrocious shade of purple brown to match her outfit. And young men wearing white jeans and big belt buckles and track jackets are enough to make me wish I could go on literally blind dates.

So, if you were wondering what I was thinking about French fashion, as an inveterate clotheshorse that is my opinion. My first French clothes investment (which will probably have to wait till December) will be a good pair of brown flat boots.

On Sundays in France, everything closes, and you're left to make your own fun. Today I'm going to try to get some lesson plans put together and write a letter- later in the afternoon, when it's warmed up a little, I will hike up to the Citadel and read for a while. I hope all is well on the home front. Today I had a buttery cookie and a cocoa for breakfast. It was perfect.

1 comment:

Joe said...

I'm slowly working my way through your blogs, though I'm still a little behind. This is my fav so far. It's expressive yet self-realized. Your other blogs have been great, too, but this is my favorite for now.