trench coat

7 French Outfit Formulas You Can Copy

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So, you want to get that ever so chic French girl style but you have no idea where to start. No matter the current trend or the latest must-have investment piece, french women have mastered their classic personal style. And if you’re reading this post, then you want to master it too! A great place to start is with these 7 easy french outfit formulas. They are all easy to copy using core basic pieces you’d typically find in a French capsule wardrobe. Mastering a chic look (and looking like French It girl Jeanne Damas or icon Jane Birkin) is just an outfit formula away!

7 French Outfit Formulas You Can Copy

1. jeans + tee + blazer

Using one versatile piece after another, this look is easy to wear and put together. Everything you’d find in this outfit is pretty basic, but that just means it’s even easier to get your hands on!

French style is usually never complicated and this outfit proves that. However, a French woman never looks blah boring either! This blazer takes the look from casual to polished.

This outfit is versatile enough that any shoes could go with it! Ankle boots for casual elegance, heels for sophistication and glam, sneakers for casual, loafers for classic, and flats for simple.

If you want to accessorize, feel free to add a simple yet classy belt or a gold necklace. Both French wardrobe staples!

7 french outfit formulas

shop a similar look: blazer | tee | shoes | jeans

2. white blouse + trousers or jeans

Black pants are a wardrobe must-have and a classic wardrobe staple! A tailored pair of pants is one of those pieces of clothing that you may not wear a ton if you don’t work in an office setting, for example, but they’re worth having in your wardrobe for the moments where you need a little bit more sophistication.

Tailored pants not your thing? You can always substitute for black jeans instead. Or really, any jeans! This outfit formula is classic, not boring. Wear the white blouse/white button down tucked in to look more put together.

Like most of the outfits you’ll see on this list, they can all be accessorized simply yet wonderfully with a belt, gold necklace, or classic bag.

french outfit formulas

shop a similar look: white button down | black pants | heels | purse

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3. cropped jeans + front tie top + espadrilles + oval sunglasses + straw bag

Tuck this look away for the summer because this is going to be your stylish go-to. If you get anything for summer to look like a French girl, it should be the espadrilles! You’ll find those in almost every french girl’s closet as well as a pair of straight leg jeans.

In early spring you may not be able to get away with warm weather clothes and accessories, but you can definitely rock a pair of white oval or cat-eye sunglasses. Paired with a straw bag and a front tie top, you’ll look Parisian warm weather chic! Substitute the front tie top for a floral or white blouse depending on what you’re comfortable with. It’s still chic and you’ll still get the same French look.

french outfit formula

shop a similar look: espadrilles | top | jeans | straw bag | sunglasses

4. turtleneck + pants + gold necklace

Chic and simple. Turtlenecks are not outdated. They’re a timeless piece! This outfit combo is great for fall, winter, and average temp days. You can wear your turtleneck tucked into high-waisted pants. It’s not a bad idea to find pants with interesting buttons and pocket details too!

Cropped ankle pants make a great pairing with turtlenecks as well, as do, you guessed it, jeans! French girls love their denim after all. To continue the sophistication feel of this outfit, pair this look with simple accessories like a gold pendant necklace, gold hoops, a watch, or a simple bag.

When it comes to footwear you can of course, always count on the go-to’s, such as loafers, flats, ankle boots, or block heels.

french outfit idea

shop a similar look: turtleneck | jeans | ankle boots  

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5. jeans + striped top + blazer + silk scarf

How could we talk about French style and not mention black and white stripes? It’s such a classic look! It especially looks chic paired with a silk scarf. But if you think the combination of stripes and a scarf are a little cliche, then you can experiment and make this look your own by how you tie the scarf. Instead of tying it around your neck, try tying it around your handbag or wrist instead.

Wearing a striped or Breton top with a blazer instead of a trench coat is still very French without being super typical. Flats and simple gold accessories, in addition to the scarf, are the perfect ways to finish off this look.

For shoes, you could wear anything from ankle boots to ballet flats to heels. And don’t think too much about what jeans you need to accomplish this outfit formula. Skinny, straight, cropped, and flared are all fantastic options!

french outfit

shop a similar look: blazer | tee | jeans | flats

6. silk top + blazer + leather pencil skirt (or pants)

Need an outfit idea for a fancier night out? That’s where this silk top comes in handy. Remember something dark, something loose, and something structured. Loose- silk top. Dark- could be your bottoms or outerwear. Structured- blazer or tailored coat. Whether you’re attempting to look French or not, the elements in that outfit make for a great outfit when you need to be more dressed up!

When it comes to elevating your basics, silk shirts are a great item to have in your wardrobe. A spin of your classic white button down, yet still chic and elevated. They look great with everything from pencil skirts to your no-fail favorite jeans.

french outfits

shop a similar look: blazer | silk top | skirt | heels

7. jeans + lightweight sweater + trench coat + ankle boots

We can’t finish this post of french outfit formulas without talking about a beige trench coat! Though it’s not a clothing item you’re surprised by, it’s the perfect stylish and practical choice.

A French way to wear the trench coat while taking a break from the stripes is to wear it over a cashmere sweater. Whether you’re going for a Parisian look or not, no wardrobe is complete without a cashmere sweater, especially in neutral colors like gray, white, black, beige, or navy.

Looking for some new purchases but don’t know what to get? A good investment will always be your outerwear. Whether it’s this tried and true trench coat, a buttery soft leather jacket, or a classic wool coat, it’s these key pieces that you want to splurge on because they’ll add the finishing touch to every outfit.

french outfit ideas

shop a similar look: trench coat | sweater | jeans | ankle boots

You don’t need to be carrying around a baguette with a beret perched on top of your head, smoking a cigarette from red lips to look like a French woman. In fact, wearing or doing all of those things at once is cliche French fashion, not real French fashion. Though, to be fair, a red lip won’t hurt. 😉

The French have mastered less is more and because of their confidence and the way they carry themselves, a simple outfit is never boring. And now that you have 7 easy to copy outfit formulas based on this iconic style, you will never look boring either. Only classic!

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If you liked this post then you’ll love this post on the 8 secrets of French style!

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Founder and editor of My Chic Obsession, Carolyn is your trusted fashion maven. Carolyn's drive to help others achieve a classic and timeless wardrobe fuels her posts, making a go-to resource for style seekers worldwide. Beyond the wardrobe, she resides in the heartland of the Midwest, dreaming up new ideas and raising her two lively boys - her biggest fashion critics.