Get That French Girl Style
Here at Joanie, we are long time fans of French girl style - from Breton tops to vintage-denim and classic winged-eyeliner. We look back through the decades at icons of French style and the wardrobe staples it takes to get that timeless and coveted ‘je ne sais quoi’.
Say Bonjour to some of our favourite French girl style icons and learn how to get their look. You’ll be looking super chic in no time!
Françoise Hardy: French Girl Style Icon
Iconic sixties chanteuse Françoise Hardy was doyenne of the ‘Yé-Yé’ euro-pop music scene and, according to Nicolas Ghesquière (and us), is ‘the very essence of French style’. Mod style icon, Hardy championed both masculine style and the famous silver futurism of Paco Rabanne. Hardy says “The Yé-Yé look embodied the fresh, vibrant allure of the 1960s, but it was rarely exaggerated in a way that reads as too ‘retro’ today.”
The Queen of the white jean, with her eyelash grazing fringe poking out from under her familiar baker boy hat, Françoise ruled supreme. Channel her bohemian flair in our Sienna La Bohême Breton Top or pair our Loren Zou Bisou Slogan Tee with white jeans for that French chic. Or style the Trucker Mid-Wash Denim Shirt Dress as an homage to Hardy’s love of vintage denim.
No French woman’s wardrobe is complete without a classic trench coat, pair our Gladys Belted Button Skirt with a classic white shirt for a summer time alternative or channel the Parisian singer’s bold ‘60s aesthetic in the Babs Button-Through Green Midi Dress.
Jane Birkin: French Girl Style Icon
English beauty Jane Birkin is what we like to call an ‘honorary’ French Girl. She may have been born in the UK, but throughout the 1970s Birkin personified French girl style and taught the world how to dress like a Parisian.
Birkin’s casual style is still just as stylish and as relevant as it was 40 years ago; flared jeans paired with an unbuttoned shirt, or knitted sweater, and that all-important basket bag. Replicate her style with vintage denim or our denim mini, the Sarah Scallop A-Line Denim Skirt paired with our Fenella Gingham Knit Cardigan or navy Linda Cable Knit Cardigan.
“My look is a cocktail. I'm not as nicely turned out as the French, but I don't care like the English.”Jane Birkin.
Her trademark basket bag and perfect fringe cemented her as an icon of effortlessly cool French style. Her wardrobe in La Piscineremains our go-to inspiration for the summer! Shop the Tara Button Denim Pinafore Dress and Natalie Toile De Jouy Print Tea Dress to channel effortless French summer style.
Anna Karina: French Girl Style Icon
Another French girl style icon that isn’t actually French… Danish-born, doe-eyed sixties starlet Anna Karina (named by Coco Chanel no less) was chief Godard Girl and one-time wife of the famous director. Together they created some of the most iconic characters in French New Wave cinema, her starring roles in Alphavilleand Band of Outsiders being amongst the most memorable.
Her modish on-screen wardrobes epitomise French girl style. Slightly more feminine than some of the others on our list, Anna Karina loved a girlish dress. Our Gwen Polka Dot Mini Tea Dress and Jade Polka Dot Print Jersey Dress have just the right amount of femininity. Anna favoured bold colours in tights, berets and accessories and became known worldwide for her bright blue ‘60s eyeshadow and trademark dolly shoes. Channel her love of bright red in the Basil Fitted Stretch Gingham Dress and the Jennifer Scallop Edge Pinafore, or add a touch of nautical to your every day with the Mariner Trompe L’Oeil Sailor Collar Jumper.
The French Girl Style Starter Kit
For a timeless nod to French style, check out Joanie favourite Bretter French Fries Breton Stripe Top with a tongue-in-cheek French fries motif.
Now nail that French Girl look!
10 French Girl Style Essentials
- Breton striped top
- Vintage denim
- Red lipstick
- A perfectly undone fringe
- Winged eyeliner
- Oversized sunglasses
- Little black dress
- Turtle neck
- Ballet pumps
...And that certain ‘Je ne sais quoi’!