The 5 Basic Pillars of Parisian Winter Style

Every month, Londoner-turned-Parisienne Marissa Cox of Rue Rodier will bring you her pearls of Parisian fashion wisdom and style tips straight from the French capital. A photographer, writer and influencer, we turn to the ever-chic Marissa on a regular basis for a truly unique take on her adopted country’s signature style. Whether we’re looking to her decor decisions, handbag purchases or chic hotel choices, we can all agree that looking un petit peu plus Français could never be a bad thing…

It’s been a long road since I moved to Paris six years ago—a journey that has shaped my career, friendships and most importantly, for this column, my style. One thing I’ve most certainly learnt from the French, amongst other things, such as which baguette to buy at the boulangerie (une tradition, s’il vous plait) is how to build a better capsule wardrobe.

French girls have the knack of throwing together a good outfit that looks effortless, which is why we reference their style again and again. They tend to stick to staples; timeless items that transcend trends.

The French are less likely to buy into fast fashion, unlike my former London self might have done. I used to get distracted like a magpie eyeing up shiny things at the store. I would often panic buy a weird, wonderful item that ultimately ended up in my closet with the tag on, never to see the light of day. (Don’t tell me you haven’t done this.)

Instead, the French make more conscious shopping choices, investing in items that will have a longer shelf life. They love to invest in pieces that can be worn multiple times and in myriad ways. So for my first column, I’ve picked out five items that French girls are likely to have in her winter wardrobe (because, baby, it’s cold outside) that you will not only keep you warm and toasty but also stylish for years to come.

1. CARDIGAN

On Marissa Cox: Rouje cardigan and bag; Sandro jeans; Andersons belt

Gone are the days when cardigans were associated with your gran (not that that’s a bad thing) because the cardigan is cool again. A cosy button-down makes the perfect layering piece. If you’re hesitant, invest in a beige knit with tortoiseshell buttons. Wear it over a polo-neck for the day and layer it over a cute top for the nighttime. You can also unbutton a few buttons to flash some of your lace bra for that je ne sais quoi look, which you know we’re all secretly trying to master.

On Marissa Cox: COS coat; Nanushka jumper; & Other Stories jeans; Tibi boots

This coat is cosy, practical and nips you in at the waist for an all-figure flattering silhouette. The dressing gown coat is a winter wardrobe must-have. I’ve had this COS style for over five years, and it’s still going strong.

Shop my favourite dressing-gown coats:

3. LONG BOOTS

On Marissa Cox: Toteme jacket; Zara boots; Simon Miller bag

I only recently discovered the merits of long boots. I thought I couldn’t pull them off, but I can, and so can you. My advice? Wear a style with a mid-heel to elongate your legs. Besides looking good (and dare I say, sexy) they will keep you warm. Layer a pair over skinny jeans to feel extra snug.

4. FAUX-FUR COAT

On Marissa Cox: Stand coat; Sandro jeans; COS boots; Simon Miller bag

The easiest way to stay chic and warm in winter? Wear faux fur. Black and chocolate brown are classic choices, but what with leopard print now being considered a neutral, my personal favourites come with spots.

On Marissa Cox: Mango blazer; Sandro jeans; COS boots; Andersons belt

A well-cut wool blazer will never go out of style and will become one of the most versatile and hardworking pieces in your wardrobe. Purchase one that is slightly oversized and longer-lined (which covers your derrière) and preferably in a go-with-everything charcoal grey. It’s the easiest way to elevate an outfit. Just team with jeans and a T-shirt or belt it over a mid-length skirt for a more unexpected look.