Parisian Style: Decoded

When it comes to style, Parisian ladies have that certain je ne c’est qais. There is something so effortless, yet polished about Parisian style, that it can be hard to put your finger on exactly what makes it so divine.

But as Innes de la Frassange famously said: ‘You don’t need to be born in Paris to have Parisian style’.

“So how exactly do I inherit this chic Parisian nonchalance?” I hear you ask. ‘Is Parisian style something you can actually obtain?’

With Paris Fashion Week just around the corner, we decode Parisian style into a set of simple rules, with stunning examples from the streets of Paris.

1. Breton Stripes


(Photo Source:

Stripes may be just about as typical as riding a bicycle carrying a baguette, but there is a reason that they are so iconic to Parisian style. The French, as a matter of fact, have been rocking the Breton top since 1858!

Originally, the Breton striped top was invented as a uniform for the French navy seamen. Each one of the twenty-one stripes represented one of Napoleon’s victories! And you say we don’t teach you anything…

Fast forward a Century and a half and Breton stripes are still an integral ingredient of French style. The Parisian fashionista likes to style hers up in a quirky way, pairing it with a full skirt or relaxed pants.


2. The Silk Scarf

There’s something so opulently ooh-la-la about a silk scarf, so it’s no wonder it’s a staple in the Parisian ladies’ closet. Thrown effortlessly around the neck, or tied to a nautical knot, a colorful silk scarf is often the only accessory she will wear.

Take on the less-is-more attitude and pair a simple two-piece ensemble with a statement silk scarf. Who knows? Maybe even Karl Lagerfeld will invite you to one of his shows!

Our Favorite Parisian Scarf Looks


(Photo Source:

If this isn’t evidence that ‘less is more’, I don’t know what is! A simple striped shirt is cinched in with a black belt and paired with a matching bag. What makes the look inevitably chic is the bandana scarf, which has been rolled up and worn tight to look like a choker. Wear your scarf tight and layer with a ditsy necklace to make a subtle statement.

Get The Look

Pair your trusty denim jeans with our floral paisley silk scarf.



(Photo Source:

Now that’s a statement! Giant bell sleeves in a chunky knit fabric makes for a quirky silhouette. That deep rounded v neck is literally made for a statement scarf. The punchy, colorful pattern really pops.

Get The Look

Plain, dark colors will be instantly uplifted by the artistic print silk scarf.


(Photo Source:

When rocking another statement accessory, such as these drop earrings, opt for a more subtle scarf. This rust-brown number matches the leather bag to absolute perfection. Also, note the sleeve roll: Parisian style is about the little quirks!

Get The Look

For a more casual vibe, dress it down with a neutral, wool scarf, such as the abstract floral scarf.


(Photo Source:

It doesn’t get more chic than this! Those rough hem jeans grunge up the strappy, black heels to absolute perfection. The French are known for rocking a trench coat and this babe is doing it like a total boss! A bohemian print scarf and a statement Fendi Monster pom take something classic and place it firmly in 2017 territory.

Get The Look

Paisleys are always in! The floral paisley scarf will look fantastic with denim.

3. Neutral Territory


(Photo Source:

The French are known for being masters of neutrals! Keep it chic and understated in monochromatic nude or blush ensembles. This gives you the perfect excuse to play with textures too!

4. Borrow From The Boyfriend


(Photo Source:

Although the may favor a more understated palette, Parisian girls are known for taking a risk when it comes to shapes and cuts.

The two items a Parisian fashionista needs in her wardrobe: a boyfriend blazer and relaxed tailored pants. When choosing these items, opt for pieces that are flattering and have shape, but are still relaxed and nonchalant.

5. Juxtapose!


(Photo Source:

Whether it’s a full skirt and a boyfriend shirt, or full-length blazers with mini skirts, Parisian ladies are the masters of juxtaposition! To nail this, try pairing two random pieces from your wardrobe! However, don’t make it look too crazy! It needs to be effortless.

Finally, and most importantly, you need to be confident! So hold your head high, swipe on that red lippy and get ready to slay!

Rachel Holliday

Rachel Holliday

Interior design and fashion contributor at Banarsi Designs. Writer and Aussie-based fashion and personal style blogger at