Lessons from Madame Chic
Lessons from Madame Chic
20 Stylish Secrets I Learned While Living in Paris
Simon & Schuster, Hardcover, 9781451699371, 283pp.
Publication Date: November 6, 2012
Paris may be the City of Light, but for many it is also the City of Transformation. When Jennifer Scott arrived in Paris as an exchange student from California, she had little idea she would become an avid fan of French fashion, lifestyle, and sophistication. Used to a casual life back home, in Paris she was hosted by a woman she calls "Madame Chic," mistress of a grand apartment in the Sixteenth Arrondissement.
Madame Chic mentors Jennifer in the art of living, with elegance and an impeccably French less-is-more philosophy. Three-course meals prepared by the well-dressed Madame Chic (her neat clothes covered by an apron, of course) lure Jennifer from her usual habit of frequent snacks, junk food, sweatpants, and TV.
Additional time spent with "Madame Bohemienne," a charming single mother who passionately embraces Parisian" joie de vivre," introduces readers to another facet of behind-closed-doors Parisian life.
While Francophiles will appreciate this memoir of a young woman's adventure abroad, others who may not know much about France will thrill to the surprisingly do-able (yet chic ) hair and makeup lessons, plus tips on how to create a capsule wardrobe with just ten useful core pieces.
Each chapter of "Lessons from Madame Chic "reveals the valuable secrets Jennifer learned while under Madame Chic's tutelage--tips you can master no matter where you live or the size of your budget.
Embracing the classically French aesthetic of quality over quantity, aspiring "Parisiennes "will learn the art of eating (deprive yourself not; snacking is not chic), fashion (buy the best you can afford), grooming ("le no-makeup look"), among other tips.
From entertaining to decor, you will gain insights on how to cultivate old-fashioned sophistication while living an active, modern life. "Lessons from Madame Chic "is the essential handbook for a woman that wants to look good, live well, and enjoy that Parisian "je ne sais quoi" in her own "arrondissement.
"A guide for women who yearn to channel Audrey Tautou. . . . Personable, anecdote-filled, and studded with lifestyle tips . . . its vivacity and sincerity have struck a chord among women who would like a French role model of their own, but don't have a year to spend apprenticing with one in Paris."
"Part tribute to the effortlessly glamorous Parisian way of life, and part tutorial . . . on how to emulate the French je ne sais quoi."
“Downright intriguing. . . . You’ll close the book feeling inspired.”
"The writing here, a combination of elegance and breeziness, seems to reflect Madame Chic’s personal philosophy that life is to be lived fully and elegantly."
“Winningly combines sincerity and self-deprecation . . . sweet-natured and well-intentioned . . . full of advice.”
"Scott's book encourages American women to live simply and beautifully by eating well, slowing down, simplifying their lives and enjoying life."
"Scott blends vignettes and fun encounters with philosophies and lessons that helped her evolve a sense of style and aesthetics. Lessons from Madame Chic is a fine pick for anyone interested in women's fashion, style, and how the French have recreated style lessons."