Individuality is to fashion as ice cream is to cone. Okay, so what I mean by that is despite seasonal changes in what’s trendy, cool and feasible, true Fashionistas manage to stay stylish and innovative while maintaining those trademark underpinnings that others come to know and love them for. Said “trademark underpinnings” can have a lot to do with the places we’ve grown up in. As a Style Guru, I’m always inspired by fashion on the streets. Part of what enriches my observations is the fact that McGill’s student body represents a mosaic of cultural backgrounds. Take this Fashionista, who can speak at length about how life in her native neighborhood of Montmartre, Paris continues to affect what she reaches into her closet for each morning as an exchange student in Montreal.
Name: Caroline Cousin
Major: Communication Studies
CollegeFashionista: Of any city in the world, which is the one you think your style best fits into?
Caroline Cousin: Totally Paris. It depends on the neighborhood, but in Paris you can wear absolutely anything. As long as it’s stylish, you feel you belong to that place. Montmartre, where I am from, is a very famous neighborhood for artists, so I feel I have to dress up to respect this. It’s the place where even if I’m just going shopping, I feel like putting on something beautiful.
CF: What is your favourite period in the history of fashion?
CC: I would say the ’60s, when they had lovely dresses and the Swing was in. It’s when, in France, Brigitte Bardot was very popular. Even if she wasn’t wearing anything at all, she exuded style.
CF: Who is your favourite shopping partner?
CC: My sister. When we’re together, it’s impossible not to find perfect clothes. We can spend all our money on shoes and anything leather. We pretty much buy the same things, so it works!
CF: How do you know you love something before purchasing it?
CC: It takes me about five minutes to try something on and know it’s perfect. The things I’ve loved most have been vintage pieces. Most of the time they’re actually my grandmother’s clothes. The sweater I am wearing is hers, and I have jewelry and dresses from her that work really well for me.
How To: This Fashionista looks poised, feminine and confident in her nuanced winter ensemble… a genuine master of “Parisian chic.” The focal point of her outfit, this statement coat by Rudsack, displays craftsmanship at its finest. It uses a brilliant amalgamation of textures with tremendous visual appeal: a lustrous outer shell, buttery leather accents and cozy cable knit lining. Her individual creativity and resourcefulness shine through in the choice to wear a timeless cream-colored turtleneck, which double functions as a scarf sans the added bulk. Remember that every lady can use a pair of leather gloves; they are equal parts elegant and durable. Lucky for this Fashionista, her piercing blue eyes—a stunning accessory—are nature’s gift!