Americans have long been fascinated by the idea of the French girl (think Brigitte Bardot and Jane Birkin). And American women especially have taken an interest in the way that French women dress. It’s easy to see the allure of their effortlessly-chic style!
Berets have all the comfort of the beanie with all the style of an accessory. Who wouldn’t want that combination?
Now, the idea that French women walk around in berets everywhere and always wear them with a striped shirt is definitely a cliché. That said, many French women do wear berets proudly! There are just plenty more ways to wear it. So today, we’re going to be breaking down all the different ways to wear a beret and a few rules to keep in mind when you do.
Wear a Neutral Beret To Balance a Colorful Outfit
If you’re someone who likes to wear color, it’s best to avoid also wearing colorful accessories because it makes it harder to match them to different outfits and, if done incorrectly, can become overwhelming. A more neutral beret in white, black, or tan is the perfect hair accessory to balance out a bright sweater or winter coat.
Use a Beret As a Pop of Color
Using a neutral color scheme as a base for your wardrobe is very versatile as you can create a ton of different outfits by mixing and matching the pieces. But to help liven things up a bit, accessories will be your best friend.
If you have some neutral coats in your wardrobe, then a colorful or even a patterned beret can be a great winter accessory to liven up your outfit. And hey, on a dreary winter day, sometimes a pop of color is exactly what you need!
It Makes a Great Transitional Piece
Okay, so maybe it’s not full-blown winter anymore. You still need a sweater, but you don’t need a coat. Enter the beret. And as the weather starts to warm up again your typical winter hats (I’m looking at you, beanies) are generally out of style, unless you’re into the boho, hippy look, so the beret becomes a great accessory to wear in lieu of more traditional warm hats.
Match Your Beret to Your Outfit
Another really pretty look with a beret is to match it to your outfit. You can match it to larger elements of your outfit or even to smaller details. Coordinating your outfit is a huge part of looking put together. It could even be the perfect addition to a monochrome look if you wanted to dress in one color from head to toe!
Wear It with a Simple T-Shirt
The white t-shirt and jeans are an unexpected pairing for a beret. But these popular French girl shoes in the same color help to connect all the elements together. Between you and me, though, I would probably skip the socks.
Yes, You Can Wear a Beret with Print
A beret is a classic accessory, so if done right, you can absolutely wear it with print. The print can be really bold, or much more subtle. What you need to keep in mind is that you’ll want the overall outfit to be made up of neutral colors or else it can look too busy with a beret added. But if the overall outfit is neutral, then you can even be so bold as to wear a colorful beret.
Although, I will say this outfit is not for the faint of heart and definitely requires a great deal of confidence. As for pattern mixing with a beret, avoid it at all costs.
Modernize Your Look
The blazer and leather boots paired with the black beret create a really smart look. And with how on-trend blazers are right now with Instagram fashion, it’s a timeless and trendy outfit at the same time, which isn’t always the easiest thing to accomplish.
Keep Your Makeup Light
Because a beret can very easily begin to look a little too over the top, it’s best to wear minimal makeup. Check out my tips on Daphne Bridgerton’s makeup for a great example of what you want your makeup to look like.
Can I Wear a Beret in the Summer?
My answer to this question is yes and no. It’s definitely more of a seasonal hat because it’s made of wool, so something more lightweight like a straw hat would probably be a better choice. It’s also just not as popular during the summer, so it would look a bit out of place.
But if you do want to wear it on a warm spring or summer day, I would pair it with a nice blouse and jeans or, if jeans aren’t your thing, a floral skirt or dress. You’ll also probably want to stick to lighter berets.
Where To Get One
If you want to go for a classic French brand, check out Laulhère. The company has been around since 1840, and their berets are still made in France. For a more affordable option, try checking stores like ASOS where I’ve seen some options like this mauve beret pop up.
Berets are a classic accessory that are super fun to wear. So whether you’re pairing it with a dress, sweater, skirt, or coat, just keep in mind the basic principles for how to style a beret without looking like a stereotype or like you’re trying too hard. As intimidating as it might feel at first, you should no longer have any reason to fear the beret!