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For when France seems too far away. Shop for inspiring images of France and discover travel tips, packing advice, recipes, book reviews and more.

Four Ways I Take Inspiration From Fashion Magazines

Fashion Magazines - A Parisian Shoot

One of the things that I love about Paris is that there is always something going on, something that you might not see at home. Perhaps an art installation, or a demonstration or some sort of parade or pageant.

During out last visit, Scott and I were entertained by a full on magazine fashion shoot in the middle of my very favourite spot in Paris, the Palais-Royal.

It was fascinating to watch the entire spectacle. And I’m not overplaying it by using the word spectacle. It really was quite the show. Four models, a photographer with a team of assistants, at least four make-up artists and a whole crowd of support crew – from junior stylists right through to the catering team.

While we had a great time watching them shoot different outfits in different parts of the historic Parisian landmark, it got me thinking about the way fashion and women are portrayed in the media.

Hundreds of shots were taken and reviewed just in the time we were watching. At one point Scott commented that they moved a bag about 3 millimetres to the left before shooting it again. And all of this effort went in before the editing process, which will only enhance both the outfits and the beautiful women wearing them.

In a time where style and body confidence issues abound I think it is really important that we understand the work and the effort that go into creating the pictures we see in magazines..

Now I’m a big fan of glossy fashion magazines. I pick up copies regularly. I love to spend time on Saturday and Sunday mornings poring over my latest acquisition. And I take so much inspiration from what I see and read.

But I think it is worth remembering what a construct all of these shots are and that we enjoy them first and foremost for the creativity and inspiration they deliver. Beautiful girls in wigs, wearing stunning, expensive designer outfits and talented photographers, stylists and editors create absolutely gorgeous pictures for us to admire.

However, we don’t have to copy the looks exactly, or worse, compare ourselves to the women in those images. As the saying goes – comparison is the thief of joy. And we certainly shouldn’t lose confidence in our own style due to reading fashion magazines. Let’s face it – most of those looks are not for every day wear. Instead we should let the images we love influence our style, which should in turn, enhance our confidence.

Four Ways I Take Inspiration From Fashion Magazines

  1. My top takeaways from fashion magazine always seem to have something to do with colour. I look for unique colour combinations that I adore and consider ways I could incorporate those colours into my wardrobe. Often, I find you can create new colour palettes through the introduction of scarves, shoes and other accessories.
  2. I create mood boards. I’ll often clip pictures I love from magazines. I like to do this without editing myself or thinking too hard about it. Over time I start to see themes in the pictures I’ve collected and it becomes pretty obvious when I’ve fallen in love with a particular item or look. That’s when I might decided to make an investment – when I know I’ve truly fallen for something.
  3. I get a feel for trends. Not necessarily so I can rush out and follow them. No, it’s more likely that I will write about them here. However sometimes I will add a touch of a trend to my (mostly) classic wardrobe.
  4. Finally, I never race out and buy a whole new outfit after flicking through my favourite magazines. Nope. I prefer to wander over to my own closet and look for opportunities to recreate the essence of looks I love using clothes and accessories I already own. Often I’ll be inspired to use my existing clothing differently to create a whole new look. And this way, I not only get more value from my purchases but I also guarantee I’m working with clothes that suit my body shape.

Are you a fan of fashion magazines? Do you enjoy them for the creativity like I do? Or do you steer clear? Either way, I’d love for you to share your thoughts in the comments section below.

Until next time – au revoir.

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