The French Dos and Don'ts of Chic Party Dressing

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Courtesy of Warehouse

Last week I had the pleasure of spending an evening with Julia Restoin Roitfeld. The style star was in town to celebrate an edit of Warehouse's party collection, and editors and influencers were brought together for one rather elegant evening within the appropriately festive confines of Mark's Club in Mayfair to talk sequins, short hemlines and seeking out the ways French girls do sassy. "I think French girls are a bit less daring when it comes to prints and colours," she told me. "Most French girls are like me: They like their all-black uniforms."

Julia is a shining example of chic after-dark style for women across both sides of the pond: She brings that laid-back, Parisian approach to trusted pillars of party dressing (bodycon dresses, all-black everything, high heels), resulting in the kind of sophisticated/alluring ratio most would like to copy and paste. Keep reading to get Julia Restoin Roitfeld's most important party dressing style tips, and shop her Warehouse picks below.

Do: Go for Bodycon

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WHO WHAT WEAR UK: What is your most relied-upon party outfit?
JULIA RESTOIN ROITFELD: A little black dress, pretty body conscious. I love to cinch my waist even more, and I love a good statement leather belt, plus the highest heels possible—as long as I can dance with them. I hate carrying a bag, especially if I want to be free to dance, so I am really into the belt bags right now—who would have thought I would give into that?

Don't: Overdo your hair and makeup

WWW UK: What about your party beauty rules?
JRR: My hair is always loose and down… a bit undone, and for makeup, I usually go for natural skin (easier to remove after a long night out) and a good smoky eye.

Don't: think you can't wear tights

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WWW UK: Do you have any tips on how tights can work with a party outfit? Or would you never wear tights with a party look?
JRR: New York gets pretty freezing in the winter, which doesn't leave much choice to it. But I only like them in black with a short black dress. That's the upside of tights—you can reveal more leg without being inappropriate. I love Wolford's Individual 10 in black, I always get them a size too big so that they are less sheer.

do: research your high-heel options

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WWW UK: Do you ever wear flat shoes for a night out? If so, what kind, and with what outfit?
JRR: It really depends on what I am looking for. For a fancy night out, then I'd choose heels, but I will always wear the ones I know won't make me suffer. I am good at picking the right ones by now—I know which brands fit my feet. If I am planning on going for a real dancing night out, I might consider flats, but it's rare.

Keep scrolling to shop some of Julia's top Warehouse party pieces.

See the eight French fashion tips you can use forever more.