The 8-Piece French-Girl Summer Wardrobe

Kristen Nichols

We’ll admit it—we have a thing for French style. This probably doesn’t come as a big surprise, as we’ve investigated everything from the swimsuit styles French girls avoid to the surprising outfit in their closets to the affordable denim they love. In other words, we’ve done our research narrowing in on how they achieve that je ne sais quoi, and now we’re diving into their summer wardrobes.

French It girls like Jeanne Damas, Sabina Socol, and Anne-Laure Mais seem to line their closets (and suitcases) with many of the same items and follow a few of the same rules. The guidelines are pretty straightforward. First, keep your palette neutral. Stick to classic shades like navy, white, and red, as well as earthy tones like tan and rust. You’ll have a hard time finding French girls wearing anything too jarring like neon. Next, when wearing prints, go for seasonless patterns. Much like an It bag that’s often associated with the time it debuted, prints can look tired after a few months. You can avoid making your outfit look like it’s dated by wearing prints like polka dots, gingham, and simple florals, which will always be in style. Last, you can never go wrong by following the lead of Jane Birkin. Whether it’s emulating her basket bag, cropped hemlines, or layered necklaces, she’s a constant source of inspiration for French girls.

Keep reading to see the eight pieces that define French summer style, then shop our favorite styles from Rouje, Réalisation, Reformation, and more.

Cat-Eye Sunglasses

Cat-eye sunglasses are an effortless way to nail a vintage look. Match a pair of retro white sunnies with a timeless statement blouse. 

Gucci 55mm Cat Eye Sunglasses ($535)

Cream shades are an easy way to lighten your look.

Le Specs Beautiful Stranger Sunglasses ($69)

Wear these retro-influenced sunglasses with high-waisted jeans and a white tee.

Garrett Leight x Clare V. 47 Cat Eye Sunglasses ($340)

These make any outfit pop.

Summer Dress

A long summer dress with a bold pattern doesn’t require a lot of accessories. Do it the French way by throwing on a red lip with a simple bucket bag and you’re good to go. 

The Reformation Jo Dress Es ($218)

Pretty floral prints instantly feel French.

Rotate Heather Dress ($260)

This neckline is perfection.

Réalisation The Alba Rosalita ($240)

Throw on a worn-in leather or denim jacket, depending on the season.

Straw Bag

Add a woven bag into your warm-weather wardrobe. French girls take this bag everywhere from the city to the beach.

Poolside Bags Beach Tote ($250)

So versatile.

Danse Lente Extra Small Josh Bag ($330)

Forget digging through your purse—a structured bag makes finding your belongings so much easier.

Hat Attack Small Round Handle Bag ($105)

The contrasting handles make this a unique pick.

Straight-Leg Jeans

Tuck in a solid-colored shirt and add basic shoes for a minimalistic look.

Levi's Wedgie Icon Jeans ($98)

This French brand knows a thing or two about wardrobe basics.

Boyish The Dempsey High-Rise Comfort Stretch Straight Leg Jeans ($158)

Wear this pair as is or cuff at the ankles.

Mango Straight-Fit Theresa Jeans ($60)

The perfect wash.

Vintage-Inspired Swimsuit

Channel your inner Jane Birkin. French girls are opting for vintage styles this summer, especially in their swimwear. 

Monday Swimwear Costa Rica Top ($82)

Minimalists are losing it over this bikini.

Shop the matching Argentina Bottom ($79).

Solid & Striped Nina Belt One Piece Swimsuit ($178)

Wear this one-piece with cat-eye sunglasses.

Shoshanna Ring One Shoulder One Piece ($240)

Mix and match these bottoms with different colored bikini tops.


Don’t be afraid to wear a skirt that adds a pop of color. Pair it with a neutral top and strappy sandals for a casual look.

Topshop Paperbag Denim Miniskirt ($35)

We can imagine Fraçoise Hardy wearing this style.

J Brand Jules High Rise Skirt ($178)

Wear this skirt with a breezy white top.

Levi's Deconstructed Skirt ($48)

Wear a pair of mules with a classic denim skirt this summer.

Gold Necklace

A floral blouse is flawlessly complemented by a gold pendant necklace. In fact, French girls wear their necklaces with essentially every outfit—it’s their daily staple!

BaubleBar Sofya Pendant Necklace ($27)

To wear with practically anything.

Gorjana Stellar Locket Necklace ($70)

This brand is an It-girl favorite.

Madewell Moulded Heart Locket Necklace ($38)

Layer this simple pendant with other gold necklaces.


Espadrilles were basically made for summer travel.

Castaner Carina Wedge Espadrilles ($175)

Wear these ankle-tie espadrilles with a printed midi dress.

Soludos Classic Espadrille Wedges ($95)

These wedges are incredibly versatile.

Saint Laurent Logo Espadrille ($525)

Think of these as your everyday pair.

This post was published at an earlier date and has been updated.

This article originally appeared on Who What Wear

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