10 Pieces of Jewelry Every French Woman Owns

These French girl jewelry essentials are owned by nearly everyone in Paris. Have you ever wondered what French jewelry Parisians keep in their jewelry boxes? I’m an American living in Paris and today I’m going to spill everything I know about the French jewelry pieces adored by Parisians.

I’ll go over how to style your jewelry like a French woman, and what pieces are necessary to create a jewelry collection you love. 

How French Women Style Jewelry

The first thing to know is that many French women don’t buy a lot of jewelry. They are often lucky enough to receive one or two pieces passed down from their mother or grandmother and they stick with those for life. Sometimes, they receive a gold baptism pendant when they are young girls.

However, when French women do buy jewelry, they tend to stick to simple, classic designs. They don’t wear brightly colored jewelry and avoid flashy costume jewelry, too. Instead, they select a few delicate pieces of jewelry to own, often in warm yellow gold.

As Coco Chanel said, “Before you leave the house, look in the mirror and take one thing off.” French women practice this approach to jewelry and never wear more than one or two pieces of statement jewelry – like a bold necklace or large ring.

Gold Jewelry

When selecting jewelry, try to go with pure gold jewelry that will last a long time if you can afford it. Cheap necklaces and rings aren’t worth it according to most French women. 

Do the French wear gold-plated jewelry? Yes, they do. French women are not against wearing gold-plated jewelry as pure gold jewelry can be quite expensive.

Even though lots of luxury French jewelry brands are based in Paris, not all French women shop there, especially when they are young and on a budget. Those brands are better for special occasions like graduations and weddings.

French Jewelry Essentials

Today I want to focus on everyday French girl jewelry. Despite France’s luxury jewelry-making reputation, several affordable French jewelry brands have popped up over the years and seen great success in France and abroad.

However, as you age and your budget grows, think about investing in classic jewelry pieces that will last longer. 

Here are the key pieces of French jewelry to own.

Gold Pendant Necklace

Every French woman owns at least one gold medallion pendant necklace. If you only get one piece of jewelry from this list, then this one is it! A gold pendant necklace is perfect for wearing over solid-colored t-shirts and sweaters to break up the fabric, or wearing over bare skin when you’re wearing a V-neck dress or top. Either way, this is the most versatile piece of French jewelry to own!

The most popular type of French gold medallion necklace to own is a vintage style one that looks like your grandmother gave it to you. The Silvana necklace by Rouje is a great example of this look. 

The Van Cleef & Arpels Zodiac collection is a great place to look for a gold medallion necklace if you’re looking to invest in this type of piece.

Layered Necklaces

French women love to layer their necklaces and sometimes wear 2 or 3 necklaces at once. If wearing three necklaces, they should all be fairly thin and delicate like the Irma necklace by Sézane. If you’re wearing two, then one might be a thicker chain necklace like the Harry necklace.

Gold Hoop Earrings

Gold hoop earrings are the standard everyday French style earrings. I see them quite often in Paris and they come in varying sizes and thicknesses so pick one that looks best with your face. I use these earrings often and while I started off with simple gold hoop earrings, I’m currently looking to upgrade to real gold ones!

Vintage Drop Earrings

French women love vintage style and jewelry is no exception. They love wearing vintage-style drop earrings that have a little pearl or jewel dangling below the earlobe. These dainty earrings are perfect for adding a little charm to your ears.

Pearl Earrings

Classic pearl earrings are a must in every French woman’s jewelry box. These earrings have a vintage charm to them and they are perfect for family dinners or work events. I love the Van Cleef & Arpels Sweet Alhambra Mother of Pearl Earrings.

Diamond Stud Earrings

Diamond stud earrings are great everyday earrings when you want to add a touch of sparkle to your outfit. They are small but simple and incredibly chic. Try the Mejuri stud earrings or the Cartier Destinée Earrings if you are ready to invest a bit more.

Statement Earrings

Every French woman has at least one pair of statement earrings for special occasions. Statement earrings could be larger than normal, colorful, sparkly, or unique in design. These are worn rarely, and often with a somewhat simple outfit like a little black dress.

Gold Stacking Rings

Thin gold stacking rings are the most common type of ring I see on French women. These can be simply designed with a curved edge or feature a small pendant. I have a small ring by French jewelry designer Sophie d’Agon which I wear every day! 

Gold Bracelet

A simple gold bracelet is a great piece of jewelry to own for chic French style. The Cartier Love bracelet is a popular French bracelet with a minimalist design. It’s great for wearing with cozy knit sweaters or a chic black dress.

A Watch

Lastly, an elegant way to wear jewelry on your wrist is to opt for a watch. The Cartier Tank Watch is historically one of the most beautiful French women’s watches you can own. With a sleek brown or black leather strap and a rectangular gold frame, this watch has been worn by the most elegant women from American First Lady Jackie Kennedy Onassis to French actress Catherine Deneuve. 

I hope this post gave you a better idea of the everyday French jewelry pieces that Parisians adore!

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