Sunday, October 20, 2013

A French Halloween?

What happens at Halloween in France? A couple years ago, in the mid 1990's, Halloween came fully into the daylight. In stores all over Paris and France, counters had been covered with pumpkins, spider webs and witches, and French kids tried out a new custom: trick or treating.

However, after its initial impetus it gradually lost much of its attraction. The whole Halloween ritual never really caught on, and "la Toussaint" (All Saints Day) still remains the widely honored national holiday. All Saints Day, on November 1st, is deeply set in French minds, and many French families go to cemeteries with fresh flowers and tools to clean the graves and honor their dearly departed.

Of course, some bars and restaurants maintained their special Halloween nights, mostly in Paris, but "celebrating" Halloween in France remains very commercial. If you are looking for a spooky costume, some Halloween-style candy to give to trick or treaters, or even a fairly-sized pumpkin, you will really have to scout around!

Friday, October 4, 2013

Less is always more- 10 tips to look French

Less is always more - simpler is always better. This could be a French motto. French women like neutral colors, staple clothes and basic items. You want to look French? Follow these 10 simple tips:

1- Use basic colors - black, beige, camel or white
2- Invest in quality - choose good quality basics that will last forever
3- Keep it simple - just one eye-popping accessory, that's it
4- Yes, jeans and sneakers (Bensimon or Converse style) are okay to wear everyday. Even for middle-aged women
5- Please, don't ever wear tennis shoes. Tennis shoes and sweat pants are a no-no - except if you are on your way to the gym or tennis court
6- Wear a scarf somewhere on your body - around your neck, your hair, your waist, or even tied to your purse
7- Pick a piece of jewerly for a stylish accent - a fancy bracelet or necklace, or earrings
8- A stylish, good quality leather purse will make a difference
9- Apply light make up - do not over do! French women never apply makeup with a heavy hand
10- Dress for your body type. Understand what shapes flatter your figure and stick with them. Always.

Inès de la Fressange, Paris style icon