Keeping it French!

Keeping it French!

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Despite the fact the I own enough fancy frocks and scrumptious skirts to fill two closets and a small storage facility in glamorous Edison, New Jersey, my “core wardrobe” consists of a few well appointed pieces. And by “core wardrobe” I mean carefully edited articles that I rely on regularly.

En route to a recent style event, my dear friend and stylista  Adriana Nova complimented me on my ensemble of vintage whiskey mink jacket, satin lapel blazer, flouncy mini, and knee skimming flat boots. I quickly replied something to the effect of “Chile, I’m sure I’ve worn this blazer the last couple of times we’ve seen one another…of course paired differently…but still“. Adrianna flatteringly volleyed back “Your personal style is very French“.

Oui oui! Adri is absolutely right. My personal aesthetic is quite French indeed. Contrary to popular opinion, French women are not slaves to fashion and haute couture. From an early age French women are taught to find the style that suits them and rock it for dear life. I have subscribed to this doctrine for many years. French women also tend to invest in a few high quality pieces rather than stock up on hoards of cheap clothing from haunts like Forever 21 and Charlotte Russe. Now don’t get me wrong. It’s perfectly fine to cop an odd or an end from F21, I often do (hello “jeggings“), but don’t ball outta control and make it rain up in that piece!

My quick little tete e tete with Adriana inspired her to drop some serious fashion gems via Twitter. So as Denzel Washington asserted to Ethan Hawke in the movie “Training Day, “Listen. You are in a privileged position to learn. With that said, read on as Adriana Nova strikes Twitter gold with her rant on the French style of dressing!

  • So, today’s thoughts are on “French” dressing, which my pal @thisthatbeauty and I discussed yesterday. I love the philosophy behind it. 10:18 AM Jan 22nd
  • Buy good quality (notice I didn’t say “expensive”–but they often are), well-made pieces that are timeless, and go well w/ other staples 10:20 AM Jan 22nd
  • in your wardrobe. Now, my definition of timeless is more flexible than others’. I think a sequin jacket or a gold tunic can be timeless.
  • Not to say you didn’t need your basic good black skirt, LBD, and black blazer. But perhaps go for a tuxedo blazer with satin lapels and 10:21 AM Jan 22nd
  • ruched sleeves rather than your basic Ann Taylor boxcar with two arms that you’ll look at in a few years and go “meh.” 10:22 AM Jan 22nd
  • Plus, what I love with items you keep around long-term is building a history with them. “This is the dress I took to Tuscany,” etc. 10:23 AM Jan 22nd
  • And I’m actually quite comfortable w/ people knowing me for signature pieces. My gold Chanel clip-ons have become my signature jewelry piece 10:23 AM Jan 22nd
  • that people now always know me by. Maybe some people think, “this chick stay in them Chanel earrings” but I like to imagine that it conveys 10:24 AM Jan 22nd
  • more of a “I love those earrings every time I see them.” @ least that’s been the feedback. And if it isn’t, well, as @bevysmith said 10:25 AM Jan 22nd
  • yesterday: fu*! 10:26 AM Jan 22nd
  • Building a wardrobe around good pieces is like building a career: it takes time and strategy. 10:26 AM Jan 22nd
  • But the end results, a well-curated, quality collection of pieces that speak to your personal style, are invaluable. 10:28 AM Jan 22nd
  • The way I see it is this: once I put something on for the day I don’t want to think about it again: no tugging, fixing, checking hems, etc. 10:29 AM Jan 22nd
  • With finely tailored, well-made clothing, 99.9% of the time you do not need to do that. And I want to re-emphasize that well-made & quality 10:30 AM Jan 22nd
  • Doesn’t always mean “expensive.” Some of my timeless pieces are H&M, TopShop, & Old Navy. You just have to know how to look & what works. 10:31 AM Jan 22nd
  • @ThisThatBeauty You inspired today’s fashion trant (Twitter rant). Gold star! 10:40 AM Jan 22nd

For more Twitter bug golden nuggets from the Amazing Adriana, follow her on twitter @realcurbappeal. Also check for Adriana via Essence, Honey, StyleHive, and RealCurbAppeal.

More on Adriana:Stylin’ and profilin’ since the days of Buster Browns, Adriana Nova picked up her first Vogue at age 8 and never looked back. A regular contributor to several of the Web’s top fashion sites, she’s also appeared in the New York Post, as well as on New York’s CBS2News and CURB APPEAL sizes up Style from Adri’s stoop on Fashion Avenue, glancing occasionally up the street at the stalled bus known as Pop Culture.

Felicia Walker Benson is Editor in Chief for ThisThatBeauty. For Felicia's complete bio, click on the "About Felicia" tab. Follow Felicia on Twitter @ThisThatBeauty From time to time the good folks from various brands, PR companies, and marketing firms graciously provide product to ThisThatBeauty for editorial consideration. Much appreciated! However, ThisThatBeauty readers can take comfort in knowing that gratis product has never nor will it ever guarantee a mention on my little old blog. Simply put, I write about whatever I darn well please. Thank you very much! For less sassy verbiage on how products make it to the prestigious pages of ThisThatBeauty, click the tab in the upper right hand corner labeled "Disclosure".


  1. Fabulous and timeless styling advice. I’m signing up to follow Ms. Adriana’s styling blog today. Thanks for sharing Felicia….great article as usual!!!

    Karen (aka MakUpDiva)

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