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 oh-so-chic Marissa on a regular basis for a truly unique take on her adopted country’s signature style. Whether we’re looking to her décor decisions, handbag purchases or chic hotel choices, we can all agree that being un petit peu plus Français could never be a bad thing…
After being treated to a heatwave last weekend, spring and warmer weather are firmly on my mind. When it comes to seasonal dressing, the Parisiennes tend to reach for classics that can be worn again and again, but they are not ones to shy away from trends pending on their ability to last longer than one season.
I’ve filtered out five wardrobe essentials that if, for example, you are visiting Paris this springtime, won’t make you look out of place among the city’s natives. These are versatile and easy to wear investment pieces that will see you from the day through to the evening and help you build the ultimate Parisian spring capsule wardrobe that you can wear year after year—no matter what country you’re in.
If you’ve been following the last year of trends, you’ll know that beige is still big news. The easiest way to tap into this trend is to invest in a great wear-with-everything blazer. For a more modern look, make it oversized. And there’s no easier item to elevate an outfit than with a blazer. Wear with a simple tee, layered jewellery and jeans or over a dress with floss sandals, which could easily translate into a great wedding guest look. Think of it as the warmer-weather (and smarter) version of the classic trench.
Derrière-enhancing jeans are possibly the most important piece of a Parisian’s wardrobe. To add to the existing collection for spring white denim is the obvious choice. An ultra-versatile item for milder weather, as they can be dressed up or down depending on the occasion. Plus, these timeless jeans can actually last well into the colder months—trust me, they’ll look great with an all-white look come autumn.
It’s a much-peddled myth that Parisians pound the pavements in stiletto heels. Their footwear follows a much more practical approach, which is especially important considering the often uneven and cobbled streets in the French capital. If you’re not quite ready to ditch heels but want to be able to walk, wear a low-heeled block pair from the likes of Miista or Martiniano. Whatever brand you opt for, zone in on a woven style that you can definitely wear into summer.
We all know that the Parisians love a structured basket bag, or should I say panier. A trend, which was first started by one of France’s favourite Paris-dwelling Brits, Jane Birkin. In recent years, it has been revived by the likes of the city’s It girls like Jeanne Damas, Anne-Laure Mais and Sabina Socol. This season update the look with a raffia version, like the bags sashaying down the Jacquemus catwalk last September.
There’s no wardrobe item that will make you look a little more French than the white shirt. Not only is it a Parisian style staple (famously worn by the likes of Bridgett Bardot, Jane Birkin and French Vogue Editor in Chief Emmanuelle Alt), but it also ticks all the timeless boxes, which is important if you want to buy more like the Parisiennes do, too.
It’s also the perfect trans-seasonal item and can be worn with almost anything—perfect when spring temperatures turn too fresh. Tuck it into a pair of jeans, wear it over a dress or swimming costume (I don’t leave for vacation without a white linen shirt in my suitcase), or tie it at the waist to show off a little midriff.