Monday, June 02, 2014

The Monday Morning Give-Away #1: The Original French Chic book by Susan Sommers

Susan Sommers - FrenchChic

I know I said I wasn't going to post on Mondays, but I think for the next few weeks I'm going to post some things that I want to give away to one of you. (somehow, I managed to have two copies of this book...)

Please leave me a comment (you can definitely comment Anonymously, but make sure you say something sufficiently memorable so that we'll know which "Anonymous" you are - blatant flattery and praise for The Vivienne Files would be great.... ahem....) and by end of day Wednesday, I'll count the comments, generate a random number, and announce Thursday who the lucky recipient will be.

If you've never read the book, it's a hysterical combination of timeless advice and ridiculously dated photographs.  I still love to pull it off the shelf from time to time and leaf through it.

Looking Back:

2011 - Vivienne Veto: Beverage Bondage, which recounts the annoyance that one hotel in Paris experiences as large carry-out coffee is introduced to Paris.

2012 - The most frequent question anybody asks me - What to wear with a scarf: Hermes Arbre de Vie.  Great rust colors with shades of blue...

2013 - Another step in my migration toward an all-black wardrobe: Project 333: The Uniform gets MORE Uniform.




59 comments:

  1. Good morning, Janice! It was about one year ago that we met for dinner in Chicago...so hope to return someday! I would love to win one of the books! Have a wonderful Monday1

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    1. Dearest Pam - come back to Chicago any time - I'd love to do that all over again!

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  2. Coincidence alert! Of the older style books you've recommended, this one happened to be available through my library and I'm reading it now. For me the big take away is that you need to absolutely love what you buy. Incorporating this should help me cut down on those it-was-good-enough or but-it-was-on-sale purchases. The rest of the advice seems familiar from your wonderful blog but repetition of the lesson never hurts.

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  3. I've tried to get hold of this book when you first commented on it, but no luck with our library here. I'd love a copy please.

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  4. Oh yes please, anything you find wise and amusing is a must read :)

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  5. I am always drawn to books about the French. What style they have without overdoing it. It must be in their genes. I would so enjoy reading this book.

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  6. I read this book years ago after I borrowed it from the New York Public Library. Seems like I can't take it out again so I'd love a personal copy of this book!

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  7. Ok, blatant but true flattery coming up.

    I am one of the silent readers- I read but I don't comment (but occasionally click on affiliate links). Your wardrobes are gorgeous and inspire me to edit my own clothing better.

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  8. I've been reading you for about a year now, and it's amazing how you've made everything click for me - how to choose base neutrals and build a carefully curated wardrobe that makes getting dressed so much easier!

    Now for the blatant flattery: I love your curly hair, I think it's really cute, belies your razor sharp style genius!

    I would looove to have a copy of this book ;-D

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  9. Dear Janice, this brings back memories. Raised in a family of very 'formal' women proper behavior and dress was the only accepted form of behavior. One never bought anything unless it was multipurpose and non-pretentious! There was a book floating around that might have been this one, don't remember, it was my non-conformist stage of life! The early mid-sixties were a time of great change for women, so great that our school hired a consultant and we had to go to "Charm School." Really, Wilma Boyd's Charm School. We even walked with books on our heads! Only skirts and dresses were accepted, no pants of any kind. If your boyfriend was coming for an outing you dressed in your skirt/dress, walked through the lobby, signed out with the house mother, then went out to his car and changed your clothes. Yes, bizarre times!

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  10. I'd love a copy of the book and thank you for this site. Your comments have caused me to re-think how I spend my money and what I wear. All for the better!

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  11. I really need some hysterical advice in my Life; but possibly not when I'm drinking my large carry-out cup of coffee!
    Z xx

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  12. Ooh ooh ooh! I am throwing up my hand in the air and waving it madly, like Hermione Granger :)

    In all seriousness... thank you. You have such a positive impact on so many lives, everywhere :)

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  13. I need this book. Even out west, we still want to look Chic!

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  14. Please, I would love to have it! I enjoy your blog immensely for a lot of reasons, but the biggest is that you make me see wonderful color combinations I can't seem to come up with in my own mind. I feel like I'm learning tricks from the master. Thanks for all you do! --- Karen D

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  15. The things you come up with amaze on a daily basis. Your site is the first one I go to every morning and I look forward to seeing what you have come up with. I hope your passion for doing this continues because all of your readers benefit greatly from it. :)

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  16. Is there more than one way to wear a square scarf?

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  17. Well, timeless advice + ridiculously dated photos are great, but I'm loving what you provide for us: timeless advice plus well-curated images. I'm wishing I lived closer to Nordstrom's, but I guess a move to Seattle is not out of the question! Fortunately, the advice is store/source-independent - thanks Janice.
    JoyceP in WI

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  18. Your blog is the first one I look at every day. I'm 64 and still love to play dress-up. Thanks for all you do. I love the outfit on the cover of the book and would love to have it. Thank you! Pat Biggerstaff

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  19. Hi Janice:
    this is off topic, but I would like to thank you for adding "Zero Waste Home' to your blog list. Until now, I thought I was doing well in reducing my carbon footprint, but this brings it to another level all together. So much to learn.

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  20. I just thought it was such an interesting blog, and proof positive that if you really don't want to pollute, you don't much have to! Thanks for the feedback...

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  21. I think I know how you ended up with more than one copy. Wink.wink.
    Don't include me in the drawing, but please, add me to your long list of admirers.

    Cat

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  22. What a fun giveaway, thanks! I love reading the blog.

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  23. Blatant flattery alert!! ;)

    I hope to see your OWN book someday. In the interim, this would be a fascinating read.

    Most importantly, thanks for all that you do. I always love your posts.

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  24. Hi Janice, I would love to receive this book. I've learned so much about color combinations from you that I now have a wardrobe that works. Thank you.
    Marilyn

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  25. I have been reading you since your days on the French Chic Yahoo group and I hope my style (and packing) sense show it! I would love to own a copy of French Chic by Susan Sommers!

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  26. My inner smart aleck would like me to post anonymously so I can just repost "blatant flattery and praise for The Vivienne Files" But instead I'll do a regular post. Thank you for all your inspiration. :)

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  27. Our daughter is teaching English to elementary children in the Nantes region next school year. I simply must be better prepared for our visit to her. You can help by pulling my winning number. Plus years of reading you have curated my wardrobe to the point that I bounce out of bed every morning eager to start the day in my lovely and elegant wardrobe. NOT - at least the bounce part. But I have learned a lot and run around suburbia and various vacation cities knowing I look well and can pack a light suitcase with the best of them! Thanks!

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  28. Hi, Janice. I've just completed my first visit to Dublin and am traveling in England at the moment with a suitcase whose size (small) and contents (very thoughtfully curated--and with scarves) owes everything to you! So thank you!

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  29. Great give away, Janice. I already have this book and, like you, I love to leaf through it. Yes, the photos/styles are dated (hilarious) but the advice and information is still applicable today. No need to enter me but I wish everyone the best on winning it. It's timeless!

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  30. I would love to win this book. I've been a fan of the VF for several years now. You excellent advice has helped me transition my wardrobe from tons of black to an attempt to do lots of mixed neutrals to my current and beloved happy mixing of blue and green. So many blogs advocate huge closet clear outs and massive buying sprees. Your method of going slow and focusing on functionality resonated with me and was the push I needed to evolve my wardrobe. Thank you!

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  31. I adore books on fashion and style! I've been enjoying your bog for about a year now and it's encouraged me to experiment with different color combinations.

    Thanks for offering this giveaway....

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  32. Wow, I remember this book! Always wanted to buy a copy but didn't. If I win, it will go among my other fashion books, such as "The Working Wardrobe" by Janet Wallach and "Always in Style with Color Me Beautiful" (remember that one?)

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  33. Any book with "ridiculously outdated photos" is a great addition to my bookshelf!

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  34. It goes without saying that The Vivienne Files is a fantastic blog! I would love to have this book. Thanks so much for sharing!!

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  35. I used to study fashion design in Paris, a lifetime ago... But I've never really understood this hype about all things French, not back then and not now. I find London a hundred times more inspiring (no, I do not live in London, just a regular visitor, not even British...). I mean, if you think about it, isn't "French chic" just a little bit cliched?

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    1. Absolutely. That's part of what's so much fun about this book - the assumption that anything a French woman does will be chic. I frankly haven't spent enough time in London to evaluate the fashion scene - I need to travel more...

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  36. Another longtime reader and fan here... And I finally figured out how to comment not as "anonymous." French fashion/lifestyle fascinates me. Would love to win your book,

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  37. Janice - I look for your posts every day and enjoy every one! Although I appreciate your blog list, I am happy, happy that your own blog is SO popular!!

    Congratulations,
    Martine

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  38. Another coffee table book? Of course! Thanks for the giveaway, I really enjoy your blog (new follower this year).
    terilybb@aol.com

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  39. I was lucky enough to find this book at the library after you mentioned it previously and wish I had read it years ago. It would be wonderful to have my very own copy to refer to. I have often thought how great it would be if you, Janice, did an updated version for us. Your blog has done my wardrobe a world of good!

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  40. I found your blog by accident and it was exactly what I was looking for! In my workday I take a pause and read old posts from your blog for a breather and inspiration and some beauty. Thanks so much for this. I am from South Africa.

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  41. Every time a message pops up from The Vivienne Files in my IN box is a great day! I cannot imagine a day without reading one of your posts. I always glean something from every one. Thank you for the give away.
    Hugs!

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  42. What could be greater fun! Not only am I a regular reader and admirer and happy for your success but I regularly recommend your blog so people can see how it can be done. Your travel wardrobes are genius.

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  43. oops, wait a minute. I realize that I did once own this book with the outrageous photos. I was confusing it with the Veronique Viennes book that I've never laid eyes on. So please draw again should the random generator land on me. Thanks, anyway, for your happy generosity.

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  44. Love your blog - it is the highlight of checking my emails in the evening. If you ever venture north of Chicago, let me know! ltbrodattdsdotnet

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  45. I love your blog! I read it as often as possible and have used it voraciously(!) when packing and pairing down my wardrobe. I am trying to build my 333 summer wardrobe now but can't seem to get it down to 33 - maybe I'll do a 403 for summer instead?
    Thanks for your information and time to help us weed through our closets and resist the S-A-L-E item from being S-O-L-D!!

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  46. I'm a new reader. It sounds like a book I need to pick up - or win. ;)

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  47. I'd love this book, though truth be told I'm not sure if I'll be able to disassociate the comical photos from the sage advise! A fun read in any case, to be sure :)

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    1. I mean "advice" of course!

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  48. Okay blatant flattery here: I love your blog! There is not a day that I don't check in to what's new. I would like to be entered in this drawing for the book - it looks like a fun read! Thanks!

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  49. Janice,
    I love your blog and it has changed the way I view my wardrobe, how many pieces I need to be well dressed for my lifestyle etc. Thank you for all the information, beautiful style photos and the information, oh the information!

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  50. Ohh la la, that book does look like a gem! Thank you so much for sharing your sharp eye and delicious wit. I find myself looking at clothing and - really, everything - with a different perspective, having followed you for some time now. Again, merci!

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  51. playafashionistaJune 3, 2014 at 10:39 PM

    Your May 24th post is one of my all time favorites. In general, these posts that start with a scarf, piece of art or photo are always interesting to see how you balance and integrate the colors within the wardrobes. What hit home about this post is the how the variations in a same print with the continuity of orange is expressed and what it showed me about my own preferences. Bold, soft, neutral with color or color on color variations. I immediately was drawn to two colorways, then seeing the separates, I understood better how I prefer to combine color in real life which shall help to make even better planned purchases. Thanks for all the beauty and inspiration!

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  52. I NEED this book - it would scare the life out of my boys and my dog if I came down one morning rigged up like the lady on the front cover, they might even do what I tell them for a change, that outfit is STRICT. Meanwhile over at my blog I am also doing a book giveaway if you would like to take part - it's a thriller, a really riveting read. BXX

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  53. As many folks say, "It is better to under promise and over deliver." So thanks for over delivering and posting on Mondays!

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  54. I am getting better at my French chic, thanks in part to you, but can always use a bit of guidance. I am searching for that elusive elan.

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  55. Aren't I glad I checked in today, after having been away for a few days - I'd adore this book! And since I'm here, thank you for your lessons on the systematic use of a core of four (or a crazy eight) in a core neutral, with two accent colors, to form the basis of a cohesive wardrobe; your admonition that just because one admires something doesn't mean one has to own it; and your gentle reminder that we may be more in love than we need to be with the idea of having choices. I carry those lessons with me every time I shop, and I appreciate them immensely.

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  56. Timing is everything! I was drawn into your blog today when I stumbled across ‘Still Dreaming About Paris and Packing…’ For someone who needs a map, written instructions and to be pointed in the right direction (it’s true), the pictures of what clothes to pack and how to combine them are priceless. So, my next time in Paris, I will still be comfortable, but way more stylish. If French Chic can add even more style, please send it my way! Joey

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