I Spent Four Days in Paris—Here’s Everything I Packed and Wore

The last time I visited Paris, I was a 20-year-old, body-con-clad student and ended up losing my Blackberry on a night out, only to find it underneath my hostel bed the next day hidden amongst the empty bottles of €3 wine my friends and I had enjoyed. Now, as a 32-year-old woman whose tastes have somewhat matured (for the most part, anyway—I’m still partial to cheap wine), when I decided to head to the City of Lights for a long weekend this June, I was keen to overwrite my previous Parisian experience. How did I plan on going about this? By having as chic a time as possible. 

Maxine wears a white cotton minidress from Rixo. 

We booked fancy restaurants (I recommend Pink Mamma), made shortlists of the best bars (some of which were world-renowned), and, in the ultimate bougie move, I treated myself to travel miniatures of all my favourite beauty products. The last thing I needed to sort? My outfits.

Being based in Edinburgh but regularly travelling to London for work, I’ve become something of an expert at packing a carry-on suitcase and maximising the space inside it. So I was confident I’d be able to fit in an edit of elevated outfits to wear for each day on my four-day trip. The forecast predicted sunshine and very pleasant temperatures, so I didn’t have to concern myself with chunky layers and knitwear. An umbrella was the only reinforcement I packed—one that I didn’t end up needing. This allowed me to pack more footwear options I’d ordinarily take with me on a city break—something I was keen to do so as to not compromise on the intended aesthetic of each outfit.

Maxine wears a beige waistcoat-and-trouser set from ASOS. 

Most of our plans meant that once we left our hotel in the morning, we wouldn’t be back until it was time to go to bed. As such, my outfits had to work for almost every eventuality: gallery touring, metro hopping and crêpe eating all the way through to cocktail sipping. Though I stuck to flat shoes, my outfits felt elevated enough to continue wearing after dark, which meant I didn’t feel the need or want to pack two looks for each day.

Below, I’ve outlined in outfit-build form the looks I chose for my trip, which should give you an idea of how I mixed and matched certain pieces and rewore others. Consider it your guide on what to wear in Paris when you’ve got a limited carry-on working against you.

Style Notes: I might be one of the only people who find travelling in jeans comfortable. I always look for styles with stretch to make sitting in them for prolonged periods less of a thought, but for an under-two-hour flight, they’re my go-to. I wore them with a blazer in a hue that I knew would work with the rest of my outfits if I needed an extra layer as well as a perfectly weighted Breton stripe top from Zara. I also wore this exact outfit on the last day before heading home, so it actually got two wears. 

This looks so much more expensive than it is. 

My ride-or-die stripe top. 

Agolde jeans are an influencer and editor favourite—I love the faded wash on this pair. 

For all of my in-flight essentials.

I never travel in anything other than Superga trainers. 

Style Notes: I knew the temperature was going to be soaring on my first day in Paris, so I packed accordingly. This dress arrived the day before we left, and I’m so glad it did. It’s a little on the big side, so I’d recommend sizing down. Finished with tan accessories and my pride and joy, my new Loewe Cubi bag, this just might be my new favourite summer outfit. 

I always end up losing or breaking my sunglasses, so I tend to opt for frugal pairs. These, however, look anything but cheap. 

The perfect summer dress does exist.

I wear this Daphine necklace with the majority of my outfits. 

Isn’t she a beaut? 

I’ve had my tan Zara sliders for over four years now, but don’t worry—the brand reissues them every summer. 

Style Notes: I’m all about easy outfit solutions, and when I don’t fancy wearing a dress (which, admittedly, is pretty seldom), jumpsuits are my next port of call. I’d had my eye on this COS number for a while, and it was ideal for clocking up my step count on day two, as it’s so unrestricting to move in. I was able to take my blazer for another spin, and instead of wearing my tan accessories for a second day in a row, I switched over to black. 

There’s no outfit gold hoops can’t improve. 

I’m so glad I invested in this sleek blazer. 

Hands down, one of the most comfortable pieces I own. 

This was small enough to stash in my hand luggage. I used it to house things like my charger and jewellery. 

Be it at home or on holiday, I live in these sandals. 

Style Notes: I’ve always been a fan of the waistcoat trend that’s suddenly everywhere once again, but one thing my wardrobe was lacking was a matching waistcoat-and-trouser set. The co-ord I’m photographed in above is from ASOS but has consequently sold out since I bought it a few months ago. If I were to invest in another, it would be this elevated pairing from Reiss. I decided to go for a monochromatic look with cream sandals and my Loewe bag. 

Tailoring at its finest. 

I’ve maxed out the cost per wear on these sunglasses. 

I always have my trousers tailored so that they end up sitting on the ankle.

I still have to pinch myself that I own this.

I usually get blisters with new sandals, but these were incredibly comfortable from the word go. The soles are also slightly padded, which makes them ideal for walking around the city in. 

Style Notes: My plan was to wear whatever I’d worn during the day for nighttime too, but this silk dress from Réalisation took up next to no room in my luggage, so I thought I’d take it just in case. I ended up wearing it for the evening on the day I wore my COS jumpsuit but only because the restaurant we’d booked was a stone’s throw from the hotel we were staying in. Sticking with the same bag and shoes as I wore earlier in the day, one thing I did add was some extra gold jewellery for after-dark appeal. 

I get so many compliments on this dress every time I wear it. 

Back at it again with the gold hoops. 

I think mock-croc finishes always make shoes and bags look more premium. 

I have a thing for anklets. 

I don’t know what it is about these sandals, but they have the power to make every outfit you wear with them look cooler. 

Next Up: 7 Accessories French Women Use to Elevate Their Outfits

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