I spent a significant amount of my time studying the wardrobes of French women: what they wear to weddings, which jeans they prefer, the brands they regularly shop and so on. However, I've decided to approach this article with a different tack.
With a discernible chill in the air, right now, my mind is hardwired to think only of autumn and what I'm going to wear (and temporarily discard) for the season ahead. And that got me to thinking—instead of focusing on the trends French women will wear, I wanted to find out which autumn trends they'll be passing on. Because that will tell me a lot about the current French aesthetic.
We've already outlined the trends for autumn 2023 in our trend report, which covers all the noteworthy looks you need to know. However, if you're short on time, we'll sum it up—they're somewhat eclectic. The bold and daring ensembles on one runway were balanced out by sleek tailoring and neutral palettes on another, which certainly made for interesting viewing. It also means that this season is perhaps more divisive than any other—you're either in one fashion camp or another.
Always eager to get a Gallic girl's fashion perspective, I asked eight French women which autumn trends they personally will and won't be wearing this season. Whether you agree with their choices or not is entirely up to you—there's no right or wrong way to interpret this season's looks. I just thought it would be interesting to find out what these knowledgeable French fashion types are gravitating towards when it comes to autumn's top trends. If you think like I do, scroll on to see what they said.
The Autumn Trend Tamara Won't Wear: Logos
The Autumn Trend Tamara Can't Wait to Wear: Loafers
"Logos are a big trend this season, but it's not for me. My favourite luxury brand right now is The Row—the ultimate example of discreet luxury. The autumn trend I will be wearing, however? Loafers! They are the perfect shoes for Parisian life, especially as they have a casual-chic allure. My favourites come from Saint Laurent or Churches."
The Autumn Trend Anne-Victoire Won't Wear: School-Girl Outfits
The Autumn Trend Anne-Victoire Can't Wait to Wear: Pastel Colours
"While I do wear pieces like knitted vests and pleated skirts, I won't be going big on the school-girl trend seen on the runways; it doesn't feel as grown-up. Instead, I'll wear pastel colours as they help to make my outfits feel more fun."
The Autumn Trend Franny Won't Wear: Rubberised Boots
The Autumn Trend Franny Can't Wait to Wear: Fashiony Boots
"This season, I really want to invest in a pair of rain-ready boots with a fashionable edge that I can combine with my looks, just in case. Autumn will soon set in, which means rain will be on the forecast in Paris, so I feel like a pair of waterproof boots is going to be an essential ally for my outfits. I am, however, quite specific about the boots I'll be investing in. I like Mango's offering because the colours go well with everything, and the shape of them is quite understated. The pairs I'll be avoiding are the super chunky, almost clog-like, like the Bottega Veneta boots."
The Autumn Trend Marissa Won't Wear: Gothic
The Autumn Trend Marissa Can't Wait to Wear: '90s Minimalism
"Although my wardrobe has a lot of black pieces, the addition of studding and other 'gothic' items doesn't feel very me. However, I'm all about the minimal, '90s-inspired outfits that were showcased on the runway. I love nothing more than a pair of well-cut jeans and a tank top; it's so simple but chic. I've learned that good Parisian style—there's a lot less that can go wrong with a look when you keep it minimal."
The Autumn Trend Léna Won't Wear: Y2K Looks
The Autumn Trend Léna Can't Wait to Wear: Luxe Co-ords
"The trend that I can't wait to wear is luxury knitwear co-ords. This autumn, I want to feel stylish and comfy in my clothes, and knitwear has become an important part of my wardrobe. (I even wore some this summer!) It's so versatile, and for the people who feel the chill like I do, it is really the perfect trend to wear when the weather gets colder. The trend that I'll be skipping this season is the Y2K trend. Even though I love the nostalgia of the '00s and colourful, bold silhouettes, I feel that it doesn’t fully match my personal style. Saying that, I am tempted to include some bustier and mesh tops in my autumn wardrobe."
The Autumn Trend Mélodie Won't Wear: Barbiecore
The Autumn Trend Mélodie Can't Wait to Wear: Quilted Jackets
"As much as I want to introduce more colours into my closet, the Barbiecore trend is pushing it a little too far for me. It's one of those trends that you find fun on others, but I would personally never wear. As for the trend I will wear, last year, I commissioned a designer who works with antique quilts to make a quilted jacket, and I have really enjoyed wearing it. I love how fun and interesting quilted jackets are, and I am seriously considering ordering a new longer version for autumn. I have always found it difficult to wear colourful clothes in autumn/winter, but I think this would be a great way to elevate basic outfits."
The Autumn Trend Dominique Won't Wear: Ballet Flats
The Autumn Trend Dominique Can't Wait to Wear: Oversized Blazers
"Ballet flats might be very 'French,' but given the weather we have in autumn, they're not the most sensible shoe to wear. I will, however, keep wearing oversized blazers. They're on-trend right now, but I've always worn them, so it's not something new I need to invest in."
The Autumn Trend Loïcka Won't Wear: Old-Fashioned Florals
The Autumn Trend Loïcka Can't Wait to Wear: Trench Coats
"This season, the trend I'll be avoiding is old-fashioned, chintzy florals. While I like them on other people, they just don't really feel like my aesthetic. Instead, this fall, trench coats are my priority. And I've found the perfect piece for the season in this Malene Birger trench. Also on my wish list is a new pair of loafers—they might have been in our wardrobes for several seasons already, but they are still essential. I always love styles from Prada, Vagabond and Miista. There really is nothing better than a simple and effortless autumn look."