// by Milly Lee //
Daughter of iconic ’70s muse Jane Birkin, half-sister of the effortlessly insouciant Charlotte Gainsbourg, and heiress of THAT fringe, chanteuse Lou Doillon encapsulates that elusively effortless je ne sais quoi.
With the Birkin blood flowing through her veins, it is clear to see that the apple has not fallen far from the tree. And with a mother like Birkin, after whom Hermès named their iconic bag, it would be hard not to imbibe that understated elegance osmotically. From fringes to flairs, plain white tees to dresses barely grazing the knee, Birkin inspired a generation of women, and her legacy lives on; whether that be in the immortalised work of her former husband, the louche Serge Gainsbourg, or in the physical incarnation of her daughters.
‘Raised to be a muse’, Doillon soon sought to fashion a name for herself as a creator in her own right. And yet a muse she is, albeit a reluctant one. Her natural boyish aesthetic paradoxically exudes femininity, catching the eye of such fashion houses as Chloé, that bastion of French boho-chic, and Maje, the modern ready-to-wear label of laid-back luxe. And it is easy to see why. Beneath those artlessly tousled tresses lies a confidence that comes only from the unshakeable belief in one’s own personal style.
Citing the girl on the street as her greatest source of inspiration, Doillon’s style marries the classic with the eclectic, the essential with the luxurious. Prevalent within her wardrobe are the parisienne staples of a good pair of jeans, a white top, an oversized jacket and of course lots of black. Yet despite this simplicity, therein lies its elusiveness. Many of us possess such staples, yet few of us achieve the sartorial savvy of the majestic creature that is the Parisienne.
An innate coolness oozes from her every pore, demonstrating the age old adage of ‘less is more’. Her greatest weapon? The dishevelled nest of nonchalance that is her hair. She accredits the success of Gallic style with a certain arrogance. The ability to reject trends of what you should be wearing in favour of what you want to be wearing. And most importantly, the ability to know when to stop. The simplicity of Doillon’s look is deceptive, and yet she has turned it into an art.
A veritable style icon with her own trademark look of blunt fringe and minimal makeup, she is the antithesis of the glossy all-American girl. Put-together but not polished, typically French but somehow unique, Doillon has embraced the French-girl trope and made it her own. There is nothing gratuitous here; no fashion statement made for the sole purpose of pure provocation. For Doillon, style is an extension of personality, a representation of who you are, who you want to be, and who you could be.
Here are some of her best looks:
1. Wearing Gucci at the brand’s SS17 show in Milan.
2. Wearing Chanel at Paris Fashion Week (2015)
3. Wearing Olivier Theyskens at the Metropolitan Museum of Art (2009)
4. Classic tailoring is a staple of Doillon’s wardrobe.
5. Doillon modelling her collection for & Other Stories.