Haute Revelations: A Parisian Style Evolution

by Jessie Kanelos Weiner
Written By

Jessie Kanelos Weiner

Jessie is a Paris transplant with Chicago roots. As a food stylist, illustrator, and writer, she is continually scouring Paris with her insatiable Midwestern appetite for cheap thrills, beautiful things, and good bites. Follow Jessie’s illustrated footsteps from Chicago to Parigote at View Jessie Kanelos Weiner's Website

9 comments on “Haute Revelations: A Parisian Style Evolution

Flip-flops are not OK to wear on the streets of the US, either—or anywhere other than a beach.

What others may dislike about how Parisians (or the French in general) dress, I actually love.

Don’t get me wrong – I love bright colours and bold prints. But what I appreciate most when in Paris is the restraint with which people dress. Yes, it may appear a bit lackluster at first but there’s always one element that shines: Sash, lovely shoes, well-proportioned jacket or a neck scarf adds just the right amount of panache.

Heather in Arles

Jessie, I am so glad that I finally remembered to come back and thank you for this wonderful post and your lovely drawings.

I don’t think that this could have hit closer to home. I had the exact same experience when I moved to Paris in 2001. I had lived in NYC for 14 years before that and if there was ONE thing I was confident about, it was how I dressed. Like yourself, I had the vinatge, high-low, not trying too hard but only when it is on purpose thing DOWN. And yet, the very first morning, I sprung out the front door to run to the boulangerie sporting my favorite vintage leopard print coat and big boots…I could have been naked for all of the freaked vaguely frightened looks I received. It honestly took me a few days to get what was going on…and I am sorry to admit it but I toned it all down pretty quickly.

So glad to hear that you have found your way! Am signing up for your blog where I promise not to leave such long responses but I really felt that you wrote this one for me! 🙂

With all my best from Arles (oh yes, girl lives in Provence now),

Margarita, embrace the flash! That’s the morale of the story. No sequin is too good for the daytime.

France Geek, nicely put. i am a huge fan of the grungy Montreuil flea market. I have found quite a few diamonds in the rough which the French filles go wild over. But I never reveal their prices of 50 centimes pricetags.

Annie, I suppose it goes both ways. But when i go back to the States it always surprises me how out of place I feel in my own country. Does this make me more French?

Tiffany, Have yet to find a better striped shirt than at Petit Bateau. Cliche, but classic.

Sweet Freak, more to come!

“…those who attempt to squeeze into Petit Bateau. And there are those who remain exactly the same, fearlessly going to the boulangerie in flip-flops.” Love it! Give us more, Jessie!

Spot on. Now where is that striped shirt of mine?

do you think it is any easier to be a french woman living in the States?…… like you I always feel out of synch!!!!!

Nice point about the uniformity of the French dress code. I agree though I still find it interesting to watch what the Parisians wear.

One of my favorite memories is walking around chic parts of Paris in a thrift store halter top I’d bought in California for 25 cents. I felt like a million bucks with my small investment and the Parisians quite liked my top.

I dont fit into either of your categories. Some of us blend both types and add a bit of originality. I think that’s the funnest solution. (And oh I wish France was as in to resale clothing stores like us Californians! Have fantasized about opening up a Crossroads in Paris.)

I love these illustrations. I have harboured a love for all things Parisian and expected it to be like a walking Vogue magazine, but really, women are more understated and chic there. I have a bit more flash than that 😉

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