Every time I travel, I realize that I could pack less. We realistically could have been able to get through most days with jeans, a sweater, and something to dress up a bit for dinner. The items that were out of my bag continually look like this:
Our weather was changeable – most days we started with jackets and ended up carrying them my late afternoon. I found that I really enjoyed my fingerless gloves – they’re sort of whimsical compromise that proved to be just warm enough. And my ballet flats were great – they have enough support to be comfortable and excellent for walking. Despite all of the stereotypes, you could wear jeans every day in Paris and blend in completely, so my black waxed denim jeans got a lot of action.
But I went shopping… of COURSE I went shopping…
I always drop in at French Trotters, and I generally find something I can’t resist. This dress was perfect for me – I wore it the next day after I bought it, with my black tee shirt, black tights and flats. It’s going to get some major mileage this summer…
The tee shirts from Muji were a no-brainer. And this isn’t the exact cashmere sweatshirt that I bought, but it’s very similar, and again will be a garment that I’ll wear non-stop in the cold weather. Bensimon sneakers are hard to find in the US, and I’ve always wanted to try Geox shoes, so finding them deeply discounted made this an easy decision.
The unifying theme with all of these things is the tomboyish, relaxed feeling that they share – a clear reflection of my days working from home, and my evenings walking for miles and miles with Belovedest.
There were some pretty clear trends apparent on the streets in Paris – first thing we both noticed were the short trench coats that many of the women seemed to be wearing.
And it was delightful to see clusters of umbrella that WEREN’T BLACK!!! Which made me rethink my longstanding policy of always owning a black umbrella – it’s not like I have my umbrella out eternally, and so it doesn’t have to match my whole wardrobe – a little bit of whimsy might be a great idea.
And without question, the very second that the sun came out, so did the ballet flats – they were in every shop window, and as soon as there was a break in the clouds, they were on every female foot. As long as you get a pair of shoes with reasonable support and structure, there’s no reason that ballet flats can’t be as comfortable as any other shoes.
Another more subtle trend that I noticed was the juxtaposition of patterned shirts and sweaters. These were worn in a particular way – the shirts were buttoned all the way to the neck, and the neckline of the sweater stood away from the shirt collar just a bit, so that the contrast of patterns was noticeable.
Other than that, the most noticeable things were the subtle but uniform self-care that we saw on women – good skin, good hair, overall fitness, and a sense of vigor and confidence…