|Séduit par Géraniums by Roxanne Steed. Roxanne's blog has so many of her gorgeous paintings. Click here to see.|
I often like to remind myself of my original excitement for the French Chic lifestyle and make little notes to bring my thoughts back to that. These corrections from time to time keep me happy with my simple life and ensure I am on the track I want to be on.
It’s really going back to basics, but sometimes that’s fun to read about too, and as I said above, this reminds me of the early days of my enthusiasm about the world of French Chic.
Here are my ideas:
Eat as if in France – real, good food and perhaps look up the principles of the Mediterranean diet for ideas.
When I have a coffee or a cold drink, don’t eat at the same time (French girls don’t snack between meals). When I first started this, it was hard. I associated a morning cafe au lait with a muffin or something similar. Now I don't even think about eating anything, the coffee is enough mid-morning. I am now working on eliminating a snack at my after-work/pre-dinner drink time!
Enjoy yoghurt daily and a small piece of cheese every now and then.
Decorate like we live in a Parisian apartment – neat and tidy, streamlined and sparse, in a chic and stylish way of course.
Dress how I would imagine a French woman would – small, precise, quality wardrobe of limited colours which are best for me. A recognisable style which others can see easily is ‘me’.
Keep hair regularly trimmed and coloured. Wash hair every second day and do not be tempted to stretch it out to a third.
Keep makeup light and fresh. Use the tiniest amount of foundation and spend time on my eye makeup.
Play French music at home, both old and new to keep that feeling of French charm and lightness within me.
How I act/my demeanour: To put a spring in my step, imagine my name is Dominique and I live in Paris. Pretend I am her as I go throughout my day.
Knit, crochet and sew – be creative. I read on annebarone.com a long time ago that having a handcraft to do prevented mindless snacking as you couldn’t knit or do needlepoint if your hands were sticky from chocolate or greasy from potato chips. I always like to have my hands busy when I’m watching tv or a movie so try to keep a project by the sofa.
Read, both the chic-lit I enjoy plus books which challenge me a little. Also read more classics. My mother alternates writing styles – something fun and then something a bit more meaty so she has a good balance. In the past year or so I've read some thriller/crime mysteries and really enjoyed them.
Be light-hearted and channel Audrey Hepburn. She didn’t take herself too seriously yet was a beautiful spirit.
Be slim and slender. Yes, spend time on our menus and creating good food, but don’t make food a huge part of my life. Once I have sorted that day’s and perhaps the next day’s food, I can forget about it.
Watch a favourite movie or tv programme set in France. I have fond memories of the Peter Mayle tv mini-series A Year In Provence (based on the book) from the 90s and now have it on dvd. John Thaw and Lindsay Duncan star, and it has such a lovely warm feeling about it. Definitely comfort tv a la Francaise!
What would you add to this list? What’s your favourite way to bring more French Chic into your life?