Paris: Unboxing Victorine’s Fashion Haul
Hello guys! I’m Victorine-Louise Meurent: Artist. Model. Musician. Singer. Tutor. Paris Lifestyle Blogger. Welcome back to my back-to-the-future sartorial site, dear fellow time trekkers.
This week, I’d like to share my recent clothing haul from Zara at the Passage du Havre, kitty corner from the Gare Saint-Lazare. Actually, there are now four Zara shops in the Opéra ’hood, ideal for shop-hopping. Some call it crazy luck. I call it heaven. Seriously, this is how this busy “V to the L-O” gets it done during the big summer sales.
So what’s piping hot this season?
The blouse. No retro-infused style of sleeve got left behind, from the angular pagoda to the puffy bishop, choirboy, and leg-o’-mutton. Truth unfolds: This 19th century foxhound-toting fashionista felt quite nostalgically at home.
Of course, we have beaucoup designers and fashion houses worldwide to thank for re-igniting our love affair with the puff and the frill. A big merci goes out to Dior, Saint Laurent, Miu Miu, Balenciaga, Isabel Marant, Lanvin, Kenzo, Balmain, Sonia Rykiel, Prada, Gucci, Fendi, Louis Vuitton, and Jeremy Scott—just to name a few.
With buoyant heart on sleeve: It was difficult to stop at one top. So don’t lose your head.
Or throw caution to the sin
Got passion for fashion? Cuckoo for a steal? I hear you. Nothing gives me more pleasure than finding flattering garb at a discount price. So let’s launch our unboxing with two favorite fashion Holy Grail items: Black lace-up ankle boots, styled with one fitted frock coat. Never a thumping bore, add a fan and parapluie, and you’ll be good to go—rain or shine.
Like sequins in the sky, the deep and wide décolletage is also shining brightly this summer, according to fashion plates in the know. Totes, I say! Especially with a black choker flirtatiously slashing the neckline. Triple threat: A look not just reserved for stage actresses! No, monsieur! So get with the program, guys. The revel is always in the details.
Frankly, the collier had me at “Bonjour.”
Okay, let’s get to it! First find!
Flaunting a crisp seaside Deauville vibe, the blue-striped blouse’s sleeve details woo like sirens. Decked out in an upside down crayfish-like pouf with gathered puffs in all the right places. Not since the flirty thirties (1830s, that is), have airy sleeves flaunted such an air of cray-cray outrageousness. Plus, the mile-long wraparound straps nip at the waistline.
Tip: If you’ve missed the sales, fret not. I peered into my magic ball, and it appears that seafaring stripes and floral patterns are here to stay, along with chokers, corsets, and overblown sleeves too. At least through the Winter 2018 season. So there’s still time to pump up your own bandwagon. Giddy up!
Shall we squeak more about the size of this season’s sleeves? Indulge me, SVP. Why, they’re bigger, longer, and sassier. Again, we haven’t seen such massive wings of desire in decades. Not since the days of the New Romantics, most likely. Inspired then by medieval myths and fairytale bliss, today the otherworldly bubble is still double trouble. I haven’t been able to live without this “Juliet” pouf, styled up with all the trimmings: a bell-shaped skirt and ballet slippers.
O, Romeo! This cobalt gem is the super star of my été collection. It’s like “Victorine” in a blouse, I swear! With my hand on the cover of the summertime issue of Journal des Dames et des Modes magazine, even my red tresses are super über pumped.
My milliner mother taught me to appreciate the embellished detail. “Shine on!” she’d say. More bangles and spangles, please! And let me tell you, this pea green confection does not disappoint, from top to bottom. Look at the cords, my Lord. Donning this, I float on my little cat feet. So pretty, feminine, and refined, but yet quintessentially modern.
How to wear this go-everywhere blouse?
Tip: The sleeves are held in place by cords sewn to the sleeves. Adjust the tightness of the fabric with the strings. Fitted or loosey-goosey? It’s up to your mood du jour. If this wide flattened silhouette every goes out of style, I will just sigh.
As you may know, I’m preparing for an upcoming modeling gig with my good friend, painter Édouard Manet. For the session, I’ve picked out this baby blue top with the gathered “Marie” puffs, ruffled cuffs, and a peek-a-boo frilly neckline. Most likely, I’ll style my outfit of the day again with my trusty frock coat, boots, and the pup.
Sneaky Peak: By the way, Manet plans to take the painting “live” at the Paris Salon later on this year. I’ll post updates on Instagram. So stay tuned.
Next item! You guessed it! Another floral number, styling and profiling with its sleek and edgy black choker! Wristlet bow ties also tempt, I’d say.
Because one floral is never, ever enough
The Kimono-inspired wrap could very well work at one of the bals on the hill. When I saw this blouse, I fainted like a stage diva. Jamming both tops, my posse will be most jelly.
Frisky Summer Breeze
Final chemise with shimmy! Guaranteed to turn heads like the windmills in Abbesses. Plus, it made me a flamenco dancer. I’m not going to lie to you. I’ve worn the blue cotton wrap top beaucoup times since the shopping spree. And how could I not? With its lightweight layers of pagoda-shaped flounces, flapping in the breeze, I was the Belle of the park.
Oh, the thrill of the garden path. Peacocking never gets old, not in my book!
One more for the road
Paint your palette blue and grey: A floral print, inspired by Van Gogh’s sunflower series. Launched in 1887 during his stay in Paris. At the time Van Gogh was living with his brother Theo in a third floor flat at 54 rue Lepic. Trekking to Paris? Do pay homage if time permits, especially on a summer’s day. Pack a hankie. A plaque marks the spot.
Okay! Farewell for now! I hope I’ve inspired you to find a treasure or two of your own. Splurge, I urge. Just do it. Because life grooves right on by, pretty darn fast! Bisous!
(BTW: This post was not sponsored by Zara, Fancy Feast, or Bugs the Cat.)