Are you wondering what to pack for Paris this summer? I've got you covered. Read on to learn how to pack for a trip to Paris. Find out what to wear and what to avoid in The City of Love. Scroll down to get your Paris Packing list.
What to Wear in Paris
The first thing I do when planning outfits for a client's trip is research the weather. You need to do this too. Fortunately, Paris experiences mild summers. Highs hover around 70-75 degrees. Of course, there's always a chance for rain or a day over 80. Plan to bring a light jacket and breathable clothing.
For such temperate weather, you need to be prepared. Think versatility. You may be cold in the evenings and hot during the day.
The Parisian locals tend to dress up more than Americans. If you want to look like you belong, stick to classic, tailored pieces in neutral colors. For this list, we'll be working with a palette of black, white, blush pink, and olive green,
What Jackets to BriNG TO Paris
The reality is it will probably rain at least one day of your trip. Plan accordingly. Pack a light trench or raincoat in black, tan, or my personal favorite, clear. Add in another light jacket and a cardigan so you're prepared for breezy days and chilly nights.
Tops You'll Need in Paris
A classic white button-down can be paired with jeans, pants, or skirts. It looks great layered under a sweater or worn with a scarf. Since it's such a versatile piece, I highly recommend bringing one on your trip. Bring another button-down in a shade of blush or baby blue. Or, add another faux-neutral that pairs well with your travel capsule.
In addition to the two button-downs, bring 2-3 nice tops in breathable fabric like linen, cotton, or silk. Paris is not the place for cheap polyester.
Also, bring 2-3 chic t-shirts. Try something with a whimsical print or cheeky graphic. Skip the French words though. C'est très cliché.
What Pants and Skirts to Pack for Paris
While Parisian style is dressier than American, the French still love their jeans. Pack a pair of dark-wash jeans and medium wash boyfriend jeans. Slim-cut pants in black, navy, or grey are also a great choice.
If you're a dress-wearing gal, go ahead and pack a sundress or two. You could also throw in a mid-length skirt.
Avoid wearing leggings or shorts. In Paris, these aren't considered appropriate unless you're at the pool or gym.
What Dresses to Pack for Paris
You'll want to pack 1-2 day dresses as well as 1-2 evening dresses, depending on your itinerary and length of stay.
Accessories You'll Need in Paris
Parisians love their accessories. Don't be shy about packing scarves and earrings. Here's what you'll want to bring:
What Shoes to Pack for Paris
Though Paris is known for haute couture, it's necessary to pack comfortable shoes. Like most old European cities, people travel by foot on cobblestone streets. They use public transit en masse. When you're packing for Paris, remember you'll be spending each day walking for miles. And, you won't have a chance to change your footwear.
Four different clients have confessed that they bought outrageously expensive, hideously ugly shoes in the middle of Paris. Why? Because their feet were so uncomfortable in the shoes they'd brought from home. They couldn't take it anymore. Of course, now they have me to help plan their trip-packing. We avoid such shopping emergencies.
As I always say, you don't need to be frumpy to be comfortable. You'll need stylish walking shoes. In addition to your flats and sneakers, bring one pair of fabulous booties for nights on the town. No matter how chic, sneakers don't feel right at a nightclub. Skip the stilettos because Paris is full of cobblestone streets. See below for my exact shoe recommendations.
WHAT NOT TO WEAR IN PARIS
Sometimes style comes from what you don't wear. As you may have noticed, the blog post is littered with advice on clothing to avoid wearing in Paris. To review, don't bring flip-flops, active wear, stilettos, leggings, or uncomfortable shoes. None of these will work in Paris.
Further, don't wear camo print while visiting the City of Love. Though it's fashionable in the US, in Europe camouflage is reserved for military duty.
On another note, don't be cliche. Skip the berets and tees with French sayings.
Paris Fashion Faux Pas: What Not to Wear
As with any trip, don't bring valuable jewelry. Don't bring anything with sentimental value. These things are better kept safe and sound at home.
And, whatever you do, don't wear sweatpants in Paris.
Below you'll find my packing list for a Parisian Summer. If you want the printable version, get the PDF here.
PACKING LIST: SUMMER IN PARIS
LINGERIE AND LOUNGEWEAR
Shopping suggestions: Summer in Paris
Check your closet before you go shopping for your Paris trip. You may find you've got plenty of the essentials already covered. And, if you get to Paris and find you don't have what you need? You're in the fashion capital of the world. Go shopping! Comme c'est merveilleux!
Not long ago, I would have been absolutely horrified at the thought of wearing a denim jacket with a pair of jeans. I even wrote about the correct way to style a denim jacket here. Well, I have been converted. I'm fully on board with the denim-on-denim trend that's taken over Spring 2019.
Why the change of heart? Well, it turns out all-denim looks are an extremely practical choice for my lifestyle. With two young children and a non-traditional job, the casual nature and integral strength of denim, along with its stain-hiding qualities, are ideal for me (and plenty of my clients).
Really, I've been pleasantly surprised by how adorable clients look in a chambray shirt with boyfriend jeans or even a denim jacket with a jean skirt. As a personal stylist, I'm always experimenting with new looks, trend pieces, and of course, the classics. I like the way this particular denim trend can be broken down and paired with existing items in our wardrobes.
Of course, it's essential to style your denim-on-denim looks appropriately so they look intentional. Below are my tips to look fashionable while sporting a jeans-based outfit.
Contrast is key.
There are two ways to pull off the double denim trend. They both involve attention to contrast.
The first option requires you to pair denim pieces that have high contrast. The colors should be very clearly different. This is similar to my advice about wearing black and navy. It can be done, and even look chic. However, you need to make sure it looks purposeful, and not like an accident.
The second option would be to pair two pieces of denim that actually match, like you're wearing a denim suit. For this type of look, I recommend wearing neutral booties or leather sandals with a coordinating belt and bag.
Head over to my friend and colleague Vanessa Valiente's blog,V-style to see her pull off a matching double denim look perfectly.
For either double denim strategy, you must ensure the tone of the denims are similar too. For example, you'll want to pair distressed jeans with distressed jackets. Alternatively, you would want to wear clean-cut chambray shirts with clean, tailored denim.
Avoid pairing items with similar, but not quite matching, washes. If you happen to have two pieces that match perfectly, or two pieces that don't match at all, either of those will make a for a great double denim look.
Add a pop of color.
Personally, I love a red lip with any denim ensemble. It's the easy way to fake being fully made up. Wearing a denim jumpsuit, sunglasses, and a red lip allows you to look trendy and put together with minimal effort. Seriously, you'll feel like you're wearing pajamas while looking like you've walked out of a J. Crew ad.
Lean in to the trend.
There's no need to be shy about denim trends for spring 2019. Pile it on. Wear a chambray shirt under a pair of denim overalls. Add a jean jacket over a denim romper. Get a pair of denim shoes and a denim headband. Too much is what we're going for here.
Shop my favorite denim trend pieces for Spring 2019 below.
Shop Denim Pieces - Spring 2019
rag & bone/ JEAN The Dre Slim Boyfriend Jeans, $225
Frame Pleated Denim Romper, $300
AG "Robyn" Denim Jacket, $198
Good American Good Legs Skinny Jeans, $159
Current/ Elliot The Zenith Denim Jumpsuit, $368
Alice + Olivia Gorgeous Wide Leg Denim Jumpsuit, $485
Lafayette 148 Boston Denim Blazer, $548
Free People Nicole Denim Shirt Dress, $108
Occasionally, there are colors in our wardrobes that work better as supporting players. For example, most people won't embrace a bright yellow pair of pants, yet they will love a pair of yellow heels. Likewise, a mint t-shirt can make one look like an off-duty surgeon, but a mint handbag is a fresh addition to any spring outfit.
Call it mint or aqua, this blue-green shade is best in small doses. It has a tendency to look like hospital scrubs if you go overboard. A little aqua bag is the perfect way to add a spring pastel to your wardrobe.
Last summer, I purchased a pair of yellow suede sandals. I wore them until they literally fell apart. I promise you'll be pleasantly surprised by the mileage you can get out of yellow shoes. They play well with blues, pinks, black, and white. As a bonus, the color yellow is a mood booster. Try a pair of yellow flats. Right away, you'll notice how they spice up the most basic outfits, like a white tee and jeans or a simple black sheath dress.
I find pink can look good on nearly everyone. It's all about finding the right shade. Personally, I prefer a rich, hot pink against my fair skin. This may be why I have multiple hot pink sweaters and dresses in my closet. Almost anyone looks great in a blush pink too. However, the color pink can be intimidating. If you're not a pink lover, start small with a pink accessory, like the watch above.
Neon can be hard to wear, especially if you're a gal who loves neutrals. A little orange belt can liven up the white-button down and jeans look, or provide a point of interest on a navy jumpsuit. Like yellow, orange lends the gift of personality to an otherwise basic look.
I'm Jaquelyn Wahidi. I'm a personal fashion stylist, writer, and entrepreneur in San Diego. I help women organize their closets, define their style, and shop with intention. My style blog features practical fashion advice for women everywhere. Addicted to blazers since 2004.