My Mom and I recently binged on Netflix’s Emily in Paris…both seasons. It’s silly, it’s light, it’s fun. It was a perfect distraction. We loved it. The costume direction, however, was…surprising. (Sidenote: Her epic iPhone case can be found here.)
Emily in Paris features an American, Emily, who finds herself working for a PR firm in Paris for a year. She doesn’t speak French, she is VERY American, hilarity ensues.
But Emily dresses…decidedly not French. So much so that I must assume it was an intentional choice. We’re talking bright colors, bold prints, a bazillion accessories with tons of flawless makeup and carefully coiffed hair.
Think hats (soooo many hats), fingerless gloves, belts (omggg sooo many belts), and — perhaps the most unrealistic of all — stilettos. Our girl Emily loves rocking some stiletto heels on those Parisian cobblestones.
If you’ve ever been to Paris (or, heck, any big city), you’ll find that basically no one is running around in stilettos all day. And the French have mastered the art of the subtly undone look, the pared down, the barely-there…basically the opposite of Emily’s style.
That said, Emily’s outfits are certainly, um, a feast for the eyes. And frankly, half the fun of the show has been seeing what the heck that girl is gonna wear.
Happily, Emily is surrounded by a cast of supporting characters whose style is just as directional…but decidedly more French. Her friend Camille, her boss Sylvie…these two women in particular are tons of fun to watch on screen.
It’s a pretty genius combination, actually, one that totally pulled me in. I was thrilled to hear that Emily in Paris just been extended for another two seasons.
10 Outfit Ideas Inspired By Emily In Paris
Inspiration can come from anywhere, and the costuming for Emily in Paris is so exciting (whether you like the outfits or not) that I’ve found myself really inspired to get back to real outfits again. Here are a few fashion moments from Emily in Paris that I found particularly exciting. Some are exact outfits in an I’m-gonna-copy-this-exactly kind of way, while others are just good ideas or even welcome reminders, after two solid years of sweatpants.
1. How I Want To Wear Straight-Leg Jeans Now (AKA Camille’s Entire Outfit)
Why I Love This: For me, it’s all about the dark wash denim, cuffed, with a slouchy blazer. She manages to make a very tailored piece (the blazer) feel like an easy shirt, rather than a stuffy, tailored piece. I also love the idea of wearing it as a shirt (although I’d probably layer it over a silk tank). Because the look is basically monochromatic (dark jeans, dark blazer), the pop of red on the shoes feels genius, rather than overwhelming.
How To Re-Create: For this look, I’d just re-create this outfit almost exactly. Even her shoes are pretty walkable.
2. Light-Wash Denim Paired With A Softer, Prettier Plaid
Why I Love This: Once again, it’s the straight-leg jeans, heels and blazer…but with a softer, more feminine vibe. Per usual, there’s something about this outfit that strikes me as a little too much (in this case, it’s the shoes and the polo shirt), but I love the idea of a lighter plaid, taupe booties and light-wash jeans (instead of the usual gray-and-black). It feels fresh and unexpected.
How I’d Re-Create: Personally, I’d swap out the dark polo shirt for a white tee, and wear a more classic version of taupe booties. Instead of a true blazer, I’d probably opt for something a little softer…like this cropped wool jacket from Petite Studio.
More Taupe Booties
I have this pair of Loeffler Randall taupe booties, and they’ve become some of my most-worn. They’re not necessarily exciting, but they’re the kind of shoe that effortlessly pulls my outfits together. Definitely worth searching for that perfect pair.
3. Find A Trench Coat, Wear It Forever
Why I Love This: I read an interview with Philippine Leroy-Beaulieu (the actress who plays Sylvie) and she said this whole outfit idea (nonchalantly throwing a trench coat on over a gown) was inspired by her very elegant, very chic mother. This is the most compelling reason I’ve found for owning a trench coat.
How I’d Re-create: The hunt for a perfect trench coat is ON. I’m debating between one of the iconic Burberry Trench coats and this sustainably made one from Reformation. However, the brand Lattelier just caught my eye; their designs are seriously elevated, and really affordable. I can’t get them into the below shopping widget, but check out their oversized belted trench, their double-breasted trench and this seriously cool trench. Whoa I also rounded up green dresses, just because they’re sopretty. (I happen to own this one, and it’s pretty darn perfect under trench coats.) Of course, my green dress picks are a bit more wearable for everyday.
4. Opt For A Dress In Deliciously Drapey Leather (It’s Cool & Timeless)
Why I Love This: Gahhhh…this whole thing is so effortlessly cool. Leather in an unexpected shape is always fun, but when elevated even further into something this luxe and drapey?? Good grief. And that tiiiny little bag just nonchalantly hung from the belt OMG I DIE.
How I’d Re-Create: Instead of a leather shift dress, I’m now looking for a leather dress with extra texture. Think pleats, wrap details, belts, puffed sleeves, etc., Anything that really plays up the fact that the dress is leather, not fabric. And if you are dying for Camille’s exact bag (moi aussi), it’s Polene’s tiny belt bag. For fun, I also rounded up a few additional belt bags…but structured ones, not slouchy fabric fanny packs. I’m looking for a small belt bag that can easily be worn on date night.
5. Elevate Layering With Statement Sleeves
Why I Love This: I have a dress a little bit similar to this one. In fact, I’ll bet most of us have a dress that’s roughly the same shape. It’s basically just a classic shift dress. When I layer mine, I almost always layer it over a simple t-shirt or a black turtleneck. But look how exciting this simple shift dress becomes when layered over a major statement sleeve?
How I’d Re-Create: I’m thinking of trying statement sleeves under anything that can be layered: shift dresses, sweater vests, even overalls. Here are a few statement sleeve tops that caught my eye (predictably, most are black).
6. Keep The Hair Casual & The Jewelry Major
Why I Love This: Antoine’s wife (I think her name is Catherine??) makes the rare appearance. But whenever she’s on the screen, I’m taken with her style. No matter where they’re going (black tie gala, dinner at a restaurant) her vibe is always somehow…casual, yet entirely appropriate (and seriously chic). Going back through her looks, I think her quintessentially effortless style starts with the fact that her hair is always a bit undone, a tiiiny bit messy, and her makeup is typically understated. She manages to pull off even the most extra jewelry pairing with a loose chignon, wisps of bangs falling out.
How I’d Re-create: I’m tempted to cut bangs, haha. But for now, I’m going to play around with wearing earrings and a necklace – something I typically never do. As long as they don’t look like a matching set, and I keep the rest of my outfit understated (my usual move anyway) and my hair up, but a little undone…it should work.
7. Midi Skirts With A High Slit Know No Age
Why I Love This: I’ve long felt that everyone should just wear what they want, regardless of age…but it is nice to see that idea finally being reinforced on television. (In fact, in another episode, Sylvie’s character comes strutting out of the ocean in a black string bikini so confidently that my mom and I high-fived.)
How I’d Re-create: Wear the darn skirt. I particularly love slitted midi skirts with sneakers, Vans or flat sandals…admittedly, this shape gets a little tricker to pull off in cold weather. I’d try styling them now with Doc Martens, high-calf sock booties (or those chunky, high-shaft chelsea boots), or classic tall boots.
8. Re-Think The Pant Suit
Why I Love This: I swear, nobody treats pant suits as casually as the French. Instead of giving them the stuffy, business-only treatment, there were pantsuits casually worn in St. Tropez, and some seriously unexpected pant suits at the office.
How I’d Re-create: Instead of the usual all black, this is one area where color might actually win the day. The idea is to wear them casually, with an easy vibe. Because this is outside of my usual comfort zone, I’d probably stick to a more affordable version, just to see if this is something I really do end up wearing.
9. When In Doubt? Maxi Coats, Straight-Leg Jeans + Flats
Why I Love This: Gang, I’m cheating. The photo isn’t from Emily in Paris, instead it’s from an interview the NYT did with actress Philippene Leroy-Beaulieu (aka ‘Sylvie’). This outfit, she says, is much more indicative of what she actually wears, rather than Sylvie’s va-va-voom outfits and stiletto heels. It serves as a good reminder that classic jeans and comfy flat boots always look dead chic when paired with a gorgeous maxi coat.
How I’d Re-create: If interested, Philippene’s jeans are Uniqlo (although the AG’s I’m currently wearing are similar) and her boots are lace-up Tod’s. My daily uniform is super similar (jeans, boots, sweater, done), but to recreate this look, I’d add one seriously gorgeous maxi coat.
10. Wear What Makes You Happy
Why I Love This: How could I not??? If anything, this show serves as a reminder that there are no rules in fashion, except this: Wear what you want, wear what makes you happy.
This one’s for the Pinners…