Paris Street Fashions: Black Is the New Black

Paris Street Fashions: Black Is the New Black
My friend Connie recently spent three weeks in Paris. I left for Paris the day she returned. While Connie and I love The City of Light, we see it differently. During Connie’s stay, the movers and shakers of the world of haute couture gathered in Paris for this year’s moment-of-truth: Fashion Week. And Connie was there, in a coveted seat at a hot-ticket runway show, a slice of Paris life that few get to see. Though a foodie rather than a fashionista, I too came back with a fashion story. No ticket was required for the venue I covered. The boulevards of Paris are open to all. I walked those streets, my point-and-click camera in my pocket, and shot the city’s interestingly turned-out citizens—from behind, bien sûr!—or I might not be here to tell the tale. My models, strolling, shopping, and smooching, in parks and marketplaces, some with underarm and backpack baguettes, bore no resemblance to those Connie witnessed on the runway—so forbidding in their science-fiction shoulder pads and mile-high stilettos and their touch-me-if-you-dare scowls. As I looked at my photos each evening, a pattern began to emerge—the Three Bs of Paris street fashion this year are: Black, Boots, and BIG Bags. Legs are covered, in leggings or boots, often in both, and bags are bigger than ever—Parisian women are toting luggage with shoulder straps as they make their daily rounds. This pattern held across all ages and in shop windows across the city—from the Boulevard Saint-Germain on the Left Bank to Avenue Montaigne on the Right. Black was everywhere. The saving factor is, black is never boring. The only deviation from this pattern that I experienced was my encounter with Lilac, a Yorkie with a lilac bow in her topknot, lovingly placed by her adoring maman who, from boots to bows, was herself a vision in lilac—a bona fide fashion rebel, rarely seen on the streets of Paris. Vive la différence! Even though the sales are taking place and lots of color is being displayed – what are people buying? Noir (black) to be sure. If you’re coming to France and want to remove the stress out of any and all planning, dynamo Lisa Buros-Hutchins of can arrange anything and everything, including planning your honeymoon and/or making dinner reservations. Nothing is beyond her. Say Bonjour Paris referred you and put her to the test of making your stay in France perfect.

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Cathy lives in San Francisco, CA. Her passions are food, Paris, and writing. A morning at a farmer's market is her idea of excitement. Visiting Paris is her idea of heaven. And much of her writing is about food and Paris. She worked in book and magazine publishing in New York before she moved to San Francisco. She has two children, one on each coast, and four grandchildren, two on each coast. Her mission is to make foodies and Francophiles of them all.