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The Kooples: kooky couple ads

15 Mar

The hot fashion name on everyone’s lips this season is The Kooples.

The Parisian brand’s popular ad campaign features real-life couples dressed in its trademark classic tailoring with a grungey edge.

couple kooples ad french fashion

A couple wearing the Kooples: clever ad campaign

I’m sure you’ve seen the ads – The Kooples has recently expanded to the UK. The idea is that people in long-term relationships often borrow each other’s clothes; think androgynous separates you can mix and match for an edgy look.

Minimal and chic with a rocker vibe best sums up the clothes. If you haven’t yet ventured into one of London‘s flagship stores, do so now. It’s pricey, but quality.

It comes as no real surprise that the clothing line’s founders are the three Elisha brothers, also behind the very chic Comptoir des Cotonniers – famous for featuring mother and daughter pairs in their ads.

But what of the ads? For Spring 2012, they’ve brought in a host of famous faces. Pete Doherty sums up the overall look very nicely.

But my favourite is Fréderic Beigbeder. This is quite the coup (in my humble opinion.)

frederic beigbeder kooples lara pub

The Kooples 2012 ad featuring Beigbeder

The famous French critic, author and personality is best known for his self-deprecating sense of humour. That and being caught snorting coke on a car bonnet at 3am. He has no shame, but is generally loved for his larger than life persona.

The poster features the 47-year-old posing with his lovely 21-year-old (ahem…) girlfriend, Lara, next to the words: “Fréderic et Lara en couple pour 3 ans. Au moins.”

The joke is completely lost in the ad translations I’ve seen across the pond. The Kooples is riding on the success of Beigbeder’s directorial debut, “L’amour dure trois ans.” The January box office hit is based upon his own bestselling novel of the same name. It’s very funny, you should read it.

film beigbeder l'amour dure trois ans

L'amour dure trois ans


The pessimistic premise of the book/film is that love doesn’t last more than three years. Beigbeder is completely convinced by this depressing mantra… but is of course proved wrong. The slogan is therefore a joke.

It made me chuckle, anyway. Perhaps you have to be French.

Top 10 tips to get the French look

23 Dec

Parisian girls’ simple and elegant style is coveted by many. Renowned for their taste, class and effortless cool, it’s no wonder Paris is considered the fashion capital of the world.

Here is your essential guide to getting the French look:

1.) Favour dark and neutral colours. Black, navy, grey and white are staples. Don’t be afraid to bring in one brighter colour as long as the rest of your outfit complements it.

Budding French fashionistas

Petites Parisiennes showing off their Vanessa Bruno handbags

2.) Arm candy: no self-respecting Parisienne would be seen dead without her Longchamp handbag. Preferably get your hands on one in every size and colour. Alternatively, the sparkly Vanessa Bruno bag is still proving very popular. From schoolbag to night out, these brands are versatile and a mark of class.

3.) A good pair of jeans. There just isn’t the same demand for leggings over the pond, especially not for crazy patterned ones. Don’t even think about wearing your leggings without a skirt or top over them, c’est tres vulgaire. Likewise, bare legs at this time of year (even on a night out) are a no-no.

4.) Tracksuits are banned unless on your morning jog; always dress smart. Parisennes would be horrified to discover that UK residents feel no shame in going to the supermarket in pyjamas (ahem… guilty.) First impressions count, and there’s no room for slobs in Paris.

5.) Layer, layer, layer. Mix fabrics and pile them on. For example: a silk top with a loose wool cardi and a short leather jacket to create texture.

6.) Keep hair natural. Long, brunette, side-parted and wavy is the style worn by the masses. The trick is to look like you’ve barely had time to brush it even if it is in fact perfectly coiffed.

7.) Likewise makeup. The look is all about moderation. Fresh-faced and natural is the way forward, so put away that tango tinted foundation and emphasize the eyes.

French girl simple style

French street style: simple, textured and chic

8.) Quality over quantity: French girls would rather spend more on quality items (think Gok Wan and his capsule wardrobe.) And with no Topshop or Primark to tempt you, it’s easier to hit Kookai or Zara and invest in some quality, key pieces rather than go mad picking up ‘bargains’ you’ll only wear once or which will fall apart in the wash.

9.) Invest in key accessories and only wear one or two at a time: ie chunky necklaces and silky scarves are tres French. Shoes are key; pretty flats aka ballerines are the clear winners, even in winter.

10.) Basically, keep it simple. A plain Tshirt and jeans will look very chic when worn with sunglasses and an air of confidence.

And remember the saying: “Il faut souffrir pour etre belle.”