This month features a few familiar names and something new…
By Adriana Ermter
In honour of Paris Fashion Week, we’re turning the spotlight on French style. Meander your way down Avenue Montaigne, the Rue de Faubourg Saint-Honoré and the Champs-Elysées Avenue with these five tips:
TIP ONE: Sit down for lunch and dinner—Parisians are renowned for their lengthy, unhurried meals, which, by the way, are always accompanied by a glass of wine.
TIP TWO: Embrace Le Metro. A true Parisian almost never drives; too much traffic. But make sure to stroll the city in a pair of heels.
TIP THREE: Toss, tie, knot or wrap a pretty scarf around your neck, every single day. It’s a must. Donning a jaunty beret, however, is not.
TIP FOUR: Carry a book by Anais Nin or Voltaire in your purse. Or, if erotica and philosophy aren’t your pleasure, try Karl Lagerfeld’s Choupette: The Private Life of a High-Flying Fashion Cat.
TIP FIVE: Spritz with abandon. After all, you’re not truly French if you don’t annoit yourself with fragrance, and perhaps even one of our fragrance picks below that come inspired by the current staging of the Prêt.
ATELIER COLOGNE BLANCHE IMMORTELLE
The Vibe: Fiery and passionate
The Notes: Tangy and ripe bergamot, mandarin and mimosa mix with heady immortelle absolue, jasmine sambac and Turkish rose, with warm sandalwood, patchouli and vetiver.
The Design: Since its 2010 debut, this nouveau maison de parfum has dedicated its mix-mastering to the French classics by solely creating cologne—the only eau (sparkling or flat) 14th century royals bathed in regularly. Signature citrus-fresh notes intertwine with eau de parfums and highly concentrated essential oils: This is the olfactory personification of the powerful, opinionated Parisian.
Atelier Cologne Blanche Immortelle EDP, $85 (50 ml) www.ateliercologne.com; at Sephora www.sephora.com
COMPTOIR SUD PACIFIQUE JASMIN POUDRE
The Vibe: Delicate and sophisticated
The Notes: Sweet calamus, osmanthus and fig swirl with sultry jasmine, ylang ylang, iris and rose against a woody backdrop of wood, oud, amber and musk.
The Design: Runway creators have long been inspired by the the South Pacific. Take, for example, Karl Lagerfeld of Chanel, and his penchant for embellishing his designs with Tahitian pearls.
The sandy-beached locale stands as a favoured and muse-worthy get-away for the Parisian design elite. No wonder that style set has then been spritzing this gourmand-dominant brand since 1975.
Comptoir Sud Pacifique Jasmin Poudré, $140 (100 ml) www.comptoir-sud-pacifique.com; www.sephora.com
YVES SAINT LAURENT PARIS
The Vibe: Elegant and bright
The Notes: A vivacious bouquet of white, yellow and purple flowers greeted by a warm and elegant woody forest.
The Design: Influential for being French, ultra-chic and for sending models down the runway in exquisite suits for over 50 years, this couture house is the epitome of Parisian fashion. And while founder Yves Henri Donat Mathieu-Saint-Laurent’s cult parfum classics, like Opium, Rive Gauche and Paris are still spritzed on fashionable wrists, rumour has it another legendary, Parisian scent—Paris Rebel Collector—will soon make its mark.
Yves Saint Laurent Paris EDT, $90 (75 ml) www.ysl.com; at The Hudson’s Bay www.thebay.com