January Must-Haves, Parisian Style
Classic day heels
It’s no secret that les parisiennes are chic, but if you haven’t quite worked out how to pull off that certain je ne sais quoi, add a pair of good-quality heels to any outfit and you’re good to go. These classic heels—from one of my favorite French brands, Comptoir des Cotonniers—are a great choice and price.
Comptoir des Cotonniers
30, rue de Buci, in the 6th Arrondissement.
01 43 54 56 73.
Now these have been around for a while, but they’re here to stay—well, for this season at least. I have to say this is my favorite trend, especially when eating my way through copious amounts of French treats. Anything that gives my body some definition and adds a wee bit of chic is welcome. Just make sure your belt still fits after a big lunch!
6, rue du Vieux Colombier, in the 6th.
01 44 39 02 60.
Now, you’d be forgiven for thinking that grown-up gloves belong to the 1940s, but they’re making a comeback. Keep it simple and stick to leather, but play around with the color: rich autumn berry shades and glitzy metallics have been on every catwalk from Givenchy to Nina Ricci. My personal favorite are the classic black elbow-length, which can be worn with day-to-evening looks.
6, rue Sévigné, in the 4th.
01 42 76 90 42.
the elegant black coat
OK, it’s January, so I’m hoping that you already have a coat. Even if you’re sporting more casual attire, wearing beautifully made outerwear instantly jazzes up an outfit: voilà, you fit right in. I truly believe it’s important to spend as much as you can afford when buying a coat, as it will be the first thing people notice. You can make a first impression only once… Besides, a classically cut coat will transcend trends and seasons, making it worth every euro.
Les Prairies de Paris
6, rue du Pré aux Clercs, in the 7th.
01 40 20 44 12.
Who knew kitten heels would make their way back into our world? These ladylike heels were worn by practically every fashion editor during Fashion Week. Given that walking is the best way to see this wonderful city, not a woman in town is complaining about downsizing her heels. Much to the pleasure of my feet, we have Mr. Valentino himself to thank! The French went particularly crazy for Valentino’s studded version, and it comes as no surprise that the wait-list is as long as the runway itself! Be they red, black or beige, these shoes add an edge to any ensemble.
17, ave Montaigne, in the 8th.
01 47 23 64 61.
the day-to-evening top
Worn with skinny trousers, heels and a blazer, a versatile topper is perfect for an after-work catch-up with the girls. Or pair it with a simple black skirt, boots and a long cardi and you have yourself a minimalist chic ensemble for lunch, shopping and, yes, even a stroll around this beautiful city without “tourist” stamped on your back. Very cute!
7, rue Montpensier, in the 1st.
I think it was Anna Dello Russo who exclaimed, “Gold is the new black,” and she was right! While head-to-toe gold is better left for the pages of Vogue, accessories are great for this season. Add a touch of luxe to your ensemble with a gorgeous brooch. Or attempt to conquer Paris’s cobblestoned streets with a pair of opulent gold heels. If you’re not feeling brave, why not update your makeup collection with shimmering shades to add a touch of modern class.
140, rue des Rosiers, in the 4th.
Chanel Nail Polish
No self-respecting French woman would dare leave home without perfectly manicured nails. Not everybody can afford a Chanel bag, but how about Chanel nail polish? Since I moved here a year ago, my collection has steadily increased, and I cannot wait to get ahold of this month’s new shades, Black Pearl and Pearl Drop. The perfect way to complete your winter wardrobe.
70–72, ave des Champs Elysées, in the 8th.
01 53 93 22 50.
Editor’s note: Have you considered a Girls’ Guide membership? For only $50 you can begin receiving significant discounts on hotels, tours and classes in Paris. Plus, you’ll get all of our walking tours for free!
Milla Msa grew up in London and found her way to Paris in 2009 by way of New York and Tokyo. Constantly mesmerized by the beauty of this amazing city, Milla often finds herself wandering “aimlessly” only to arrive on the beauty floor of Galeries Lafayette… Milla spends her time keeping up-to-date with the Paris fashion world, baking and trying to navigate the beautiful, heel-hating cobblestones, which she chronicles in her lifestyle blog notjustanothermilla.com.