I confess that I had no intention of doing such a thread again, but since there have been specific requests, I figured that it would not kill me to take a few more photos. All of these photos were taken in the last three days in Paris, mostly on the Champs Elysées during lunch hour but also some of them in my own neighborhood with its infamous crosswalk just below my window.
The weather has been relatively cold, which is pretty obvious from the clothing, although you will always see a few of those totally oblivious free spirits.
In terms of tourists, the main groups that I saw were Japanese, so you will see a few examples of how they dress to visit Paris. Most of the other tourists were European, but most of them blend in with the locals, except when they are holding cameras. (Then again, I was holding a camera, too.) As I always do, I try to take pictures at random. I am not after beautiful or well-dressed people like on the other sites -- just a random cross section of humanity, ugly faces and fat thighs included, not to mention people who just don't know how to dress.
I hope you won't mind my segue for a moment....when my older daughter (fka college girl) first moved to San Francisco, she commented on the people she saw: (I'm paraphrasing, but the essence was), you can always tell who the European tourists are, because they all wear skinny jeans and brightly colored shoes. But you can always ID the Germans, though, because they always have a sweatshirt tied around their waist.
Seeing your photos of people walking around in ordinary pursuits always reminds of her comment. As always, your photo essay is fantastic. I must get former college girl to start documenting SF fashion on the street and make a contribution.
As regards fashion, or at least a 'commonality' amongst Europeans, I'd like to mention scarves. Not the scarves themselves, but how they are fastened. I've no idea why I noticed this, but over the years I did. Look at the way the scarf is fastened on the middle girl, sixth from the end of fumobici's post. The scarf is folded in half, put around the neck and the the ends put through the loop.
A year or two ago it seemed most scarf wearers used this method. So much so that it was rare to see it tied another way. I see now though that there are many more variations coming back, which is good. There have always been the individuals who did it their own way but my impression whenever I was in Europe in the winter is that 75% or so of people did it the same way.
For me the ladies with white jackets looked fab. I have definitely decided that the 'quilted' puffy duvet look is OUT! The people who wore sleek long coats looked great - Oh, and I love red too and thought the jackets stood out on a cold Paris day
Post by cheerypeabrain on Nov 21, 2010 15:30:42 GMT
This is fascinating....you say that you were taking pictures at random, but I think that it's difficult to over-ride the natural impulse to choose people that appeal to you more than others. I would like to see more beautifully dressed, fat, middle aged women
Well, Mark beat me to the punch about the scarf thing. Points to every person who does not use the loop method.
Fumobici also anticipated much of what I was thinking. To wit, that the people who look the best are the ones whose outfits look natural to them -- perhaps with flair, but without a mannered appealing to fashion.
That said, I kinda liked this fashion plate:
but this was my favorite use of a scarf ~~
Is this a tourist, or an actual French person walking an actual French poodle? ;D
As for the black, I must admit that I am in black mode most of the time, but I really do understand how people from other places must find all of the colours excessively dark, when there are so many other options. I was actually surprised to see so many brown coats rather than black, and yet my own main winter jacket is brown.
Cheery, although overweight and obesity levels have risen in France as everywhere else, they are still lower than most other Western nations. Middle-aged women with the same genes tend to be a bit plumper here in Québec, and NO, they do not all live on poutine or lumberjack food. Think our horrid winters tend to lead to a certain weight gain.
I don't really like white jackets; they rarely look very clean. One non-colour I adore is a deep charcoal grey - can be softer than black; there are some examples in the pics. Two of my winter coats/jackets are black; one is wine red, but I bought it at a charity shop (it is a cashmere/merino blend). I'm looking out the window at people walking and cycling past. Black is the most common shade, also grey and brown - few bright colours. It is about the same temp as in Kerouac's series but there is a bit of sun today.
Agree about the puffy coats though here it can get so bitterly cold that some give in and wear them for warmth, though I certainly agree they look dreadful.
And the mop of silver hair on the man fumo described as classy!!!
BJD: 'My main thought is that if they ever ran out of black dye, the French would be up shit creek.' ;D
Like Kerouac, I dress in black mode most of the time. Liking also , rich brown or charcoal gray as a base. Unlike K2, (I think) I add rich color… scarf, hat, sweater, shoes, boots etc…the simple things. These photos are great, yet to me seem somehow too yin and yang. I still feel that many of the Parisiens dress with unique style, if only a scarf. These ‘how to dress in Paris ‘ threads don’t influence me at all. From many visits, I feel that they have a unique ability of how to dress, money or not. An innate sensibility.
Puffy coats? Who knows. Scarf tying? They are the artists. A ‘look’ ? Perfect .... secretary, wealthy matron, teenage kid, investment counselor, shop worker…….all fascinate me. I don’t think they are at all conscious of a ‘look’, merely expressing a free individuality, often very inexpensively.
This is great! Would you mind updating it to portray summer wear as summer gets near? My daughter and I will be going in August and although I don't mind being pegged as a tourist, I don't want to totally stand out. (I do hope I might confuse them a little as I speak French fluently with I hope just a little bit of accent.) Certainly they don't wear scarves in August, right? And yes, the middle-aged mamas and young ladies would be the most helpful for us :-) Merci mille fois!