We can talk all day about how much we adore French brands, from the styling tricks owned by the country's chicest girls to the stars and street style gurus you should look to for excellent Parisian style. But what about the best French fashion brands that enable all the above? There are loads of them. From the super-luxe established designer Parisian fashion houses (Dior, Saint Laurent and Chanel) through newer high-street startups like Sézane, there's a veritable gamut of Gallic labels to get to grips with. And that's before we even get started on the incredible midrange section the French industry has licked. Think of some of the names you know, such as Maje, Sandro and Claudie Pierlot. They're the cherry on top of a particularly tasty contemporary fashion sundae.
French girl and creator of Musier Paris Adenorah styles one of her printed dresses with Chanel pumps.
So to indulge your love for all things Français, we've brought together 39 of the most important French brands, some you'll recognise and some you won't. But what's key to note is that not only have we assembled the coolest of the cool, but we're also giving you pointers on exactly what you should look out for when shopping any of these labels. For example, Jacquemus is our trusted go-to for bags, tops and shoes, but today we've chosen one of the brand's bodycon dresses. As we love all the following brands, you can expect to see the pieces we want to shop right now. Keep scrolling to see and shop from the 39 best French fashion brands in existence.
Style Notes: Jacquemus, created by Simon Porte Jacquemus, is one of the most trailblazing designers on the global fashion scene. His slightly surreal clothes and concepts never fail to impress editors, but there's something so inherently wearable and wantable about it all.
What to Buy: Bags, dresses, blouses, shoes and knitwear are all very popular Jacquemus choices, but the latest dresses have caught our eye.
Style Notes: Amélie Pichard is probably one of the most adventurous shoe designers in the entire world, not just in France. She recently collaborated with Pamela Anderson, and her shoes are instantly recognisable for their off-kilter heel shapes and wacky finishes.
What to Buy: There's something really sassy about Pichard's court shoes thanks to the brand's V-neck silhouettes, but her platforms are just as popular.
Style Notes: Chloé's new designer is but a few seasons in and already making a real impact on the street style scene. Natacha Ramsay-Levi's '70s lilt is precisely what you'd expect of a Chloé girl, only her take is slightly less hippie and more city slicker.
Style Notes: Givenchy is now in the very wonderful hands of the American designer Matthew M Williams, taking over from Clare Waight Keller—aka Meghan Markle's wedding-dress creator—who made this storied house look rather delicate over the past few seasons and reinvented the House’s iconic Antigona bag.
What to Buy: This dream bag will become part of your forever collection.
Style Notes: Balmain girls like their clothes tight, their hemlines short and their heels to be high. The crew that has assembled around the super-popular director Olivier Rousteing includes the likes of Gigi Hadid, Joan Smalls and Kim Kardashian West.
What to Buy: The blazers are always a good choice.
Style Notes: Kenzo Takada was born in Japan, but he founded his label in Paris. These days, it's presided over by Felipe Oliveira Baptista, but there's still an irreverent Frenchness to the sports-luxe trend it does so well.
What to Buy: While the tiger motif may feel a little dated, I'd say the boldly coloured pieces are the go-to now.
Style Notes: If you feel like all of the brands in this gallery are too expensive, French catalog La Redoute will be your savior. Full of classic pieces at a much lower price point (its in-house labels are really quite good), this website also stocks other designer brands.
What to Buy: It's where I'll be stocking up knitwear that won't break the bank.
Style Notes: Clergerie shoes are well known for being beautifully made and very practical in their design. As such, you'll find an array of influencers who adore the wearable, slightly masculine styles.
Style Notes: Founded in 1889 by Jeanne Lanvin, it has always been a source of fantastic evening wear. When Alber Elbaz stepped down in 2015, Bouchra Jarrar replaced him but recently departed. The new creative director is Olivier Lapidus, a Balmain Homme alumni.
What to Buy: As there is little call for evening wear right now, try the tailoring. It's perfect for your new WFH outfits.
Style Notes: Christophe Lemaire has been around for some time, but it's only in the past few years that his name has shot into our collective style psyche. This is partly down to his pared-back aesthetic becoming a perfect fit for Uniqlo.
Style Notes: With Nicolas Ghesquière leading the charge, LV has become a trusted source of burgeoning trends and directional fashion, from the incredible leather jackets down to the equally intricate footwear.
What to Buy: The Archlight sneakers are still going strong.
Style Notes: Part of Chanel's special ateliers, Maison Michel is a mighty fine purveyor of hats. From jaunty berets to fedoras and Minnie Mouse ears to tulle veils, if there's an accessory that changes every outfit, it can be found here.
What to Buy: Trade in your straw chapeau for a chic black hat for autumn.
Style Notes: Mid-priced Sandro should be on your list for when you're looking for staples with a twist. The brand knows what girls like wearing on a day-to-day basis and gives each of those items a little extra oomph every time.
What to Buy: There's so much to choose from, but the blazers are particularly fresh.
Style Notes: Saint Laurent is designed by Anthony Vaccarello, and boy, is he bringing the sensual Parisian out of us all or what? Thigh splits, plenty of leather and all of the vital accessories to be our most glam selves 24/7.
What to Buy: These are bound to suit everyone. Well worth the investment, merci.
Style Notes: Naturellement, we love Chloé's mainline collection, but there's something particularly exciting again about the diffusion collection. It has the floaty attitude of Chloé girls with a more accessible price point.
What to Buy: An entry-level designer handbag with all the traits of classic Chloé arm candy.
Style Notes: There's always a punky finish to everything Zadig puts into the world—whether it's a pair of rockstar boots like these or a slung-on velvet blazer you could wear to a concert with ripped jeans.
What to Buy: Chunky ankle boots you can style all year round.
This piece was published at an earlier date and has since been updated.