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Help! Parisian wedding.

(353 Posts)
Xiaoxiong Tue 07-May-19 09:32:35

My DBro is getting married in Paris to wonderful and impossibly gorgeous French SIL. I love them both but they and all their friends are very image conscious. I always feel like a giant pale galumphing hippo when I am over there and unfortunately I can't hide this time. There is no way I won't stand out like a sore thumb among their slender tanned petite friends so I am thinking instead try to go very fashion forward (which they will all recognise and appreciate, SIL reads French Vogue cover to cover every month). Like some kind of mad jumpsuit or giant Villanelle pink tulle dress or something.

Unfortunately very fashion forward seems to be made for sample size people and I'm 5'6", 11st, short waist, big bust and wobbly belly but good legs and relatively good arms. Looking through fashion editorials for ideas has terrified me (like this - eek:

Any suggestions? Budget up to £800 for the whole outfit.

My usual style is more along the lines of cigarette trousers, striped top, blazer and converse...

Xiaoxiong Tue 07-May-19 09:46:05

Like - am I insane to be looking at something like these? Will I be the completely mad English sibling and left out of all the photos?

or this:

LunaTheCat Tue 07-May-19 09:50:29

Poor you - what a nightmare!
When is the wedding? Summer or winter.
I would tend to be understated. Well cut dress,simple but descent jewellery.
Cos may be your friend - well cut clothes and natural fibres
i would wear a scarf as cover up around shoulders if needed or draped in that careless style around neck.
Really well groomed makeup and fingernails ,eyelashes tinted, understated makeup. If the dress is neutral a big bold red lipstick.

Auldspinster Tue 07-May-19 09:57:39

I think they're both fab.

banivani Tue 07-May-19 09:59:13

I love the jumpuits, en particulier the giant bow one if you're aiming for a statement. But I am not very on the nose when it comes to fashion. There are some very fashiony peeps on the parisienne thread!

GeorgeTheFirst Tue 07-May-19 10:03:07

They are both fabulous

spingiscomming Tue 07-May-19 10:04:39

Where are they getting married? Actually inside Paris or in Normandie somewhere? The venue will give more clues about how people are likely to dress. When is it?

I think @LunaTheCat has said it all - understated but perfectly groomed.

Chartreuser Tue 07-May-19 10:08:41

I NEED that DvF one (who needs a mortgage anyway???)

I have no idea on the fashion side other than I would tend towards blending in rather than standing out but that is because I have no style (currently working from home as flying squirrel meets GoT)

Apileofballyhoo Tue 07-May-19 10:11:08

Ask on the Parisienne thread. You'll get some really good advice there.

Xiaoxiong Tue 07-May-19 10:11:32

Thanks for the sympathy! Wedding is as central as you can possibly get in Paris, with the reception just off the Palais Royal. It's next weekend and yes, I have been burying my head in the sand. Sorted out all the DCs wedding outfits long before my own because I just can't bear thinking about everyone giving me the old up and down like they always do. No one ever says anything...but sometimes they make "helpful" little comments...

I'm having a look at Cos, it's so hard to imagine what those clothes will look like on my shape. None of those models have any chest at all (not a criticism just impossible to see how the clothes might hang on my 32Gs!!) and they're all quite high-necked which is also tough with a big chest.

I will definitely go all-in on the grooming, that's a great tip.

Xiaoxiong Tue 07-May-19 10:13:24

Bloody hell, both those jumpsuits are sold out in basically every size. Net a Porter seems to be as bad as Marks & Spencer for listing things that are unavailable angry

Branleuse Tue 07-May-19 10:14:50

wear something comfy and that you can eat in, as the bloody thing will likely be long and drawn out till about 5am

Sosomego Tue 07-May-19 10:17:17

I've been to a few French weddings (although none in Paris) and I find they tend to be less formal than British weddings. You won't find any hats or anything resembling a mother of the bride two piece. I would keep it simple, as PPs have suggested, something simple but well cut and maybe some statement accessories if you want to feel a bit fabulous. How well do you know your future SIL? Maybe she could give you some clues about what her friends might be wearing?

limpingparrot Tue 07-May-19 10:18:29

The first jumpsuit is amazing ! As a veteran of several Parisian weddings I would definitely wear that one and bask in the compliments smile

Teddybear45 Tue 07-May-19 10:21:27

I don’t know any French women who wear top end designer clothes or a lot of make up - a lot of them ridicule that notion as ‘British’. Instead the focus is on quality pieces that skim your body, grooming, and tidiness. Your usual style with a killer scarf / accessories should be enough.

SoyYo Tue 07-May-19 10:30:11

Because of your shape you’d probably look amazing (but vintage rather than fashion forward) in a plain silk dress from Bombshell.
I bet none of the Parisian guests will be wearing anything like it (sans coat or hat, no flowery prints either just in a plain fabulous colour)

Advice on grooming spot on

Xiaoxiong Tue 07-May-19 10:43:36

Bran maybe some of the Cos parachute dresses would work! I'd look like a Mr Man though grin

Soso I did ask and she just said "whatever makes you feel wonderful!" Which is lovely but also hard to figure out. I know my brother is wearing a blue linen suit, as are my DSs and DH. Maybe I should go in a blue linen suit and brogues.

Teddy I don't think her friends will be wearing lots of top end designer stuff necessarily, but they will all look stunning. And since I will look somewhat like the hippo among the gazelles at the watering hole I thought maybe going full-on fashion forward would save my brother's blushes.

SoyYo I love those dresses! And in fact the gold shirt dress is cut exactly the same as my own wedding dress was, if you imagine it all the way down to the ground. I may be ordering a few, thank you!

Elllllle Tue 07-May-19 10:46:44

I would go in something like this dress

spingiscomming Tue 07-May-19 10:49:21

next weekend as in this weekend? Like the 11th/12th of May ? Because Saturday is Paris is forecast to be stormy and Sunday will still be relatively cold.
I really wouldn't stress too much - weddings here do tend to be less formal.

What about something like this


With good earings, good hair, good nails, a facial and minimal makeup and a nice bag and scarf.

If you really are going to be feeling upstaged by the Frenchies whatever you wear, what I would do is go with a simple dress but get my hair done and my nails done - nothing too flashy - just perfectly groomed. Chances are there will be photos being taken in Jardin des Tuileries if it's near Palais Royal so you also want an outfit that looks good on that backdrop.

SoyYo Tue 07-May-19 10:58:25

@xia glad to help.
The point is you are not Parisian and so Vive la difference!
I think the blue silk one is so vintage and plain but fabulously cut that you can let it speak for itself with minimum accessories.
The gold one is fabulous too, very Grace Kelly.

I don’t own any personally because I don’t have the occasion to justify but I hear excellent reviews and if you call them I’ve heard they’re super helpful in recommending size, etc.
Good Luck and have Fun!

Xiaoxiong Tue 07-May-19 10:59:07

Ellllle that's lovely! Can you wear black to a French wedding? I guess so if everyone is telling me that it's less formal than a British one.

spring it's next weekend as in the 18/19th. I'm hoping it will be a bit warmer by then - at least all the venues are indoors. Don't know where photos will be taken, Tuileries a possibility but also the steps of the church are quite nice so they may be out there. There is a Toast in town so I will try those on thanks!!

I don't think it's about being upstaged so much as standing out for a good or a bad reason. Previous parties with their friends they all wore such classic simple gorgeous gauzy silky things that looked amazing on them - I think my SIL could wear a flour sack with a paper bag on her head as a hat and it would look stunning. I am very aware of not fitting in and I always seem never to have quite made it into the very copious photos afterwards. So I thought if I went very fashionista I'd at least stand out for the right reasons, IYSWIM... maybe I am over thinking this...

SoyYo Tue 07-May-19 11:03:06

I meant above. Not understated. Will make your figure look fabulous though. But still plain enough not to stick out, very vintage chic in my eyes. Just keep everything else understated: shiny natural hair (I’d say for the hair not too groomed if that makes sense, a little wild is good too), short nail manicure, but do go for a bold red lip if you like! A lot of my Parisian colleagues love a bold red lip even for working days...

spingiscomming Tue 07-May-19 11:09:51

@Xiaoxiong I see what you mean - but I always feel better in a way if I'm underdressed rather than overdressed- if I'm overdressed I feel more out of place and embarrassed - and I've been in Paris for nearly 15 years - as long as you are wearing quality clothes you'll be okay! And if you have nerves - le fumoir is just around the corner and have lovely cocktails! It'll be fine - french women are much less judgy than they look!

My tip for a french wedding (they often go onto late into the night) is to take a pack of fags - even if you don't smoke - to hand out when the smokers have run out of cigarettes and the tabacs are closed - that might be a bit controversial though.

Sagradafamiliar Tue 07-May-19 11:10:08

I'm Parisian, for what it's worth. You have to be understated. Do not look try hard. Red lipstick- yes why not. But only if you wear it all the time or it will appear you're dressing up as a stereotype or trying too hard to fit in.

SoyYo Tue 07-May-19 11:12:05

But the most important thing is indeed not to overthink it.
You have to feel bien dans sa peau “good in your own skin”. So if you love the vintage style of the ones I linked above go for it.
Or a trouser suit.
Or any of the other fab dresses linked in the thread, including the jumpsuits you thought of.

The point is you need to feel it’s really “you” and if you wear it confidently it will be your best accessory and you can afford to be eccentric in your choice if you feel it. Parisians like unusual choices and as you’re British will look at it with benevolence rather than judgement (huge advantage!)

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