By now you may be familiar with my fondness for all things Parisian, so much so that I’ve ending up moving to Paris. Like most Francophiles, I’ve inherited a Parisian touch to my style, and recently I’ve clocked the smooth transition French women demonstrate with their outfit choices in winter. Although the French uniform feels rich with summer classics like barely-there slip dresses, French women’s style in the winter is particularly clever. They’ve mastered the ability to effortlessly adapt their nonchalant style when the brazen temperatures drop by crafting a collection of fundamental pieces that are interchangeable and timeless.
As dreamy as it may be, Paris is bitterly cold in the winter, so there’s an element of practicality when it comes to dressing for this season (not that it shows). Winter weather doesn’t stop stylishly clad Parisian women from dressing up in enviable ensembles though, and the typical Parisian wardrobe welcomes layers, chunky knits, extended hemlines, and neutral accessories.
Many staple pieces constitute a Parisian winter wardrobe, from a classic camel coat to chunky knitwear and column dresses. Perhaps the most notable element of Parisian style, however, is how women continue to re-wear their staple pieces, year-round, give or take a few thermal layers.
There’s also a juxtaposition of length, textures, and tones. You’ll find women donning miniskirts with knee-high boots, slingback pumps styled with tights and boxy blazers paired with miniature bags. Outerwear becomes more statement, whether it’s animal print, shearling jackets or sweeping overcoats. There’s a greater emphasis on accessories, too, from hair claws to oversized scarves and leather gloves. Parisian style makes a statement but is also delightfully pared back in equal measure, which adds to the ambiguous French allure that we’re all desperate to replicate.
Keep scrolling for six of my favourite winter outfits that everyone is wearing in Paris right now. Plus, all the info you need on how to make these ensembles easy to replicate with pieces you probably already own.
Style Notes: A knitted dress is a hardworking winter staple as it can be transitioned from day to night. Camille styles an open-back knit with a statement bag for a winter event. Add boots for a full evening look.
If I were to recommend one dress for a capsule wardrobe it would be a knitted dress like this. You can layer it up or down in accordance with the weather and pair it with your footwear of choice to determine the vibe.
Leopard print is back like it never left.
Slick boots in the hue of 2024.
Style Notes: Shearling comes around like clockwork every winter. Next to the down puffer coat, it’s the most insulated outerwear option. This styling perfectly demonstrates how chic winter pieces can be. From the matching brown tones to the tortoiseshell hair claw, this look is the perfect meshing of casual and smart.
COS’ shearling jacket is guaranteed to last a lifetime and if there’s one thing we know about this style, it never dates.
A semi-sheer wool top is a perfect layering piece.
Leather and comfort don’t tend to go together (just ask Ross from Friends) so many will be pleased to hear this pair comes with some room in the leg.
Don’t underestimate the power of a hair claw. What was a humble ’90s accessory has now become a chic statement piece.
It’s fair to say we’ve all fallen in love with this bag.
The exposed stitching and tortoishell heel is the perfect entry into colour and pattern for people who are lovers of monochrome tones.
Style Notes: Trench coats were inherited by French women many moons ago and they continue to be worn throughout the winter with warm layers beneath. Like Amy, wear a tonal look head-to-toe by matching your outerwear to trousers.
The trench coat has become part of the French uniform and women tend to wear them year-round. This tone is the perfect colour for winter, as compared to the pale stone tones.
One of my favourite jumper offerings from Arket. This deep grey melange hue is so classic and pairs wonderfully with camel, black and white – enabling you to change looks effortlessly.
Tailored cargo trousers bridge the gap between casual and formal.
Slouched bags have become increasingly popular over the last few years and the functionality aspect makes them wearable for myriad occasions.
These vintage-style chunky hoops will offset any outfit.
Not only is the chunky loafer a classic piece but it’s also practical for winter days due to the grip and slightly raised platform.
Style Notes: I applaud Sylvie’s styling here. If like her you’re unwilling to give up your pumps in this chill, layer your jeans with low-denier tights underneath to ensure added warmth. This indigo denim is characteristic of a Parisian uniform and the brown coat ties all of the tones together.
If you’re after something slightly different from the typical camel coat this tabacco hue is truly chic.
This T-shirt is praised across the industry as the perfect white tee.
When French women aren’t wearing vintage denim or Levis, they gravitate to straight-leg fits from vintage-inspired brands like Re-done and Agolde. These look and fit just like Levi 501s.
’80s style jewels are paving the way now ans Anisa Sojka’s offering is wonderfully retro.
Sheertex weren’t lying when they say rip-proof — believe me. I’ve put a demo through my most rigorous testing and they remained intact. If you find yourself replacing laddered tights often, look no further.
Slingbacks will never date — trust me.
Style Notes: Just when we thought it was time to hang up our miniskirts, micro-minis have been dominating winter styling too. Paired with sheer tights, knee-high boots and a mini bag – it’s a trend-lead piece integrated into a pared-back everday look.
Cable knit jumpers often come cream and ecru hues making this grey colourway a refreshing take on a classic. Plus, it’s heavily discounted!
Many details make this skirt a standout piece – from the side split to substantial fabrication. Pair it with the aforementioned knit, or a white shirt for a nod to the school uniform look.
Swedish Stockings is your one-stop shop for sustainable hoisery.
A slouched crossbody bag is optimal hands free style.
Parisian women wear their glasses throughout the year. Swap tortoiseshell frames for black to complement winter looks.
Knee-high boots (especially classic shapes like this) never date. You can guarantee they’ll still be relevant five years later.
Style Notes: Miu Miu’s Logo strap ballerina flat was the “it” shoe of spring 2023 and ballet flats are still going strong. I adore the juxtaposition of sleek shoes with androgynous looks like above. Whether it’s the oversized blazer or tailored trousers, French women love pairing boxy looks with streamlined accessories.
Menswear-inspired looks are popular in Paris no matter the season. This relaxed blazer was one of the best I saw on the high street last season and now it’s on sale.
My favourite shirt at the moment.
If ever I’m looking for tailoring on the high street my first bet is COS. COS produce sleek and considered designs in high-quality fabrications.
If like me, you’re big on pearls you’ll be impressed with COS’s opulent pearl drop earrings. The contrast gold is a contemporary approach to wearing the milky accessory.
The ballet flat is another trend sweeping across many designer and high street sites. This almond toe iteration (in hardwearing leather, no less) is as classic as they come. The micro heel will also ensure you don’t wear the soles down quite as fast.