Things That Make You Go FFFM (FFFFP #3)

Rather than an FFFFP tonight, I will venture into the fuzzy, grey area of FFFM, “Friday French Fashion Mystery”. I am not quite sure if mystery is the right word, as the accessory of my current fascination is in plain sight; it’s the motivation behind them that remains unknown to me.

Leggings.

I don’t understand them. Never have. Never will. Although I am haunted, each day, with the question of why they did not get stuck (and lost) in 1987 Jazzercise classes like they should have.

Also seen recently, the seemingly harmless cousin – the fashion tights – a somewhat more transparent legging, with an added foot piece (for my male readers, re: The German, who have no idea what I am talking about). Showing up in all sorts of gaudy colors and most often mismatched with the rest of the outfit.

Really? On a bike? With the plaid coat and the orange tights, how is this not a driving hazard? I would certainly be distracted behind the wheel…

‘Tis the season. The past few days have warmed up precipitously, and it really is starting to feel like spring. As we are in Paris, the fashion is changing apace. Gone are the heavy overcoats and face-obscuring chunky scarves. Suddenly we are awash in shorter skirts (with leggings) and ballerina flats. All-in-all this is a very welcome change.

Perhaps it is the fact that French women, on the whole, tend to be longer and leaner than their American sisters, and therefore better suited for the form-fitting, thigh-clingingness that are the legging/tights. Or perhaps the re-make of Fame last year just confused the whole lot? Can someone please explain the appeal? I know that I do not personally ever have to wear them. I am just struggling to find them attractive on anyone at the moment. But, I am clearly the only one (or one of a few), as they keep cropping up in an endless variety of forms, each one more bizarre than the last. I want to like them, I think. Maybe I just have shapely calf envy.

This example is definitely blurry (sorry for any motion sickness), as I was trying to snap a photo and climb the metro stairs, but the oversized polka dots are evident enough. I’ll paraphrase my friend J, who upon seeing the photo commented, “That looks like a disease”.

Clearly, the somber colors and ubiquitous pea coats of winter are on their way out. A very welcome change. Apparently winter seems to have stifled the FFFFP just waiting to burst out. Looking forward to it.

This post was edited to remove as many identifying features of my FFFM/FFFFP personalities as possible after The German gave me a general lecture on European privacy law. Please accept my apologies if I have unveiled anyone inappropriately. Any tips on how to make people’s faces fuzzy (in iPhoto, if possible) in the case where I cannot remove the face for risk of sacrificing the outfit?

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12 responses to “Things That Make You Go FFFM (FFFFP #3)

  1. Leggings are stupid…and unattractive. And here I was worried about the French and their so called sense of fashion!

  2. Leggings should only be worn for fitness purposes (but then, they’re called tights). I actually like some tights, and have a lovely pair of grey wool ones, but, uh…they kind of need to match the rest of the outfit, no?

    (then again, I am just an unfashionable midwesterner)

    • researchingparis

      I think so. Although, I’m sure the bright ones could be the outfit centerpiece… I’m just not that daring. Grey wool ones sound right up my alley, actually 🙂

  3. I love tights for dancing..contra/waltzing. I wear them occasionally during the day when I want to pretend I’m dancing, want to get liberated from the work mode, or am freeZing cold; living in New England that’s often. I only wear black or dark grey, however. I love them with flats..with summer coming they’ll get put away as they will in Paris. Tights are just another (heavier) version of pantyhose. So what’s the big deal?
    P.S. love your blog ~brings me back to years living in Paris.

  4. I’m mostly anti-leggings (especially when worn in place of real pants), but definitely pro-colorful tights. I have a green pair and a purple pair, but I only wear them with black or gray.

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  6. researchingparis

    Hi Jill! So glad you commented 🙂
    No big deal! I am with you and firmly believe in the warming (and liberating) properties of a pair of tights. I’ve just never seen them worn as loudly and proudly as they are here.
    This is why I chose to label this post a “mystery” as opposed to a faux-pas. There is no question that the girls I see look great in the bright orange and fluorescent pink tights that I see each day – I’m just wondering what is going through their minds that is convincing enough to turn their legs into facsimiles of highlighters.
    I’m betting, in my case, it comes down to shapely calf/thigh envy (of which I am forthcoming). I just don’t have the chutzpah to pull off the short skirt, glow-in-the-dark tights look. At least not yet!

    Camille – Leggings in place of real pants is the kicker that gets me. Especially as they stretch so thin sometimes as to not cover all the right places. As I mentioned above, a classy pair of tights is always good. And even the colors – but (in my decidedly-not-trendy opinion) not as part of a misguided attempt to look like a complete Crayola crayon box. Green or purple are great at the center of an outfit. Not paired with an orange minidress… 🙂

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  11. Something odd about one of the legging pictures: te picture with the girl checking her cell, she wear a long coat and has a handbag and a shopping bag with a big flower on it.at first I thought something about her feet looked weird and then ifigured she was wearing her boots at the wrong feet. and I laughed and thought how weird…then I looker further and maybe she is just crossing her legs but we cannot see it because her coat is so long.I prefer to think that she wore her boots wrong, it s funnier.

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