There aren’t many people who are as skilled with a scarf than the legendary Costume Designer Patricia Fields.
With an impressive resumé under her belt, you might have seen Field’s previous work– Carrie Bradshaw’s tutu in the opening credits of Sex And The City, Andy’s Chanel boots in The Devil Wears Prada. Field’s eye for design doesn’t stop there, the stylist and designer has additionally had part in productions like Ugly Betty and Confessions Of A Shopaholic.
Fields is one of the few of her kind, seamlessly weaving together a character’s evolution through the clothes they wear and how they wear them. So when Fields and SATC producer Darren Star announced their plan to take the silver screen by storm for the second time, it seemed like a match made in heaven. The pair’s reunion for Lily Collin‘s role as Emily Cooper in Netflix’s new series Emily In Paris was met with high (and very stylish) expectations.
She couldn’t do us wrong, right?
If you’re looking for a show highlighting cool, french girl style, look elsewhere. Emily In Paris‘ fashion, to put it simply, is bad on purpose. Field’s styling techniques play into Cooper’s cliche American stereotypes during her time in the French capital. Eventually, Cooper’s emotional growth in the series also translates to her closet, with her looks slowly getting better each episode.
But at first, being transplanted in Paris isn’t the smoothest thing. Cooper thinks that way to make dazzling French men want to coucher avec vous is to grab a pair of ankle boots, your nearest beret, and a baguette to walk out the door. Et voilà, the blueprint to the years that Paris’ it-girls spent perfecting their style.
You could argue that Midwestern Cooper uses her fashion to stand out from the stern and stereotypically stuffy employees of Savior, the marketing firm where Cooper works over the course of the series. However, just like the show’s French characters point out there isn’t an excuse to not speak the language, there also isn’t an excuse for Emily to look like she dressed herself in the dark.
Unlike the effortless French fashions found on the streets and catwalks alike, Cooper takes Parisian fashion far more literally. In episode one, her character is introduced to her office peers wearing a blouse printed with the Eiffel Tower, snakeskin mini skirt, and her signature printed ankle booties. When her coworkers nickname her la plouc or “the hick,” it isn’t far off.
Emily’s introduction to Savior wearing a tongue-in-cheek outfit is just the start of a jam-packed season of terror. As much as we may hope our heroine and Fields come through with a style evolution, the remainder of the Netflix’s 10-episode season is a fashion meltdown.
Fields establishes a recipe for Emily’s wardrobe: an over-the-top colorful print and a designer handbag with an out-of-reach price tag given her social media consultant salary.
Throughout the season, Coopers looks play off an Americana tackiness that seems almost intentional painting a caricature of an American perception of French fashion. Sure, we’ve all daydreamed about strolling in Montmartre with a crepe, but have we all pictured ourselves wearing Maison Margiela’s tabis while doing it?
As usual, the internet’s charming sense of humor has turned a bad situation good. Social media has been ablaze with memes since the show’s October 2nd premiere. So while we secretly binge the show and roll our eyes at its fashion, we can’t help but wonder… How many tacky bucket hats can a girl have?
Emily In Paris is streaming now on Netflix.
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