Are You Being “Benched?” Get Back in the Game in Style

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As anybody who has ever dipped into the perplexing landscape of modern romance knows, keeping up with the associated vernacular is about as challenging as keeping up with the latest denim trend, and a lot less enjoyable. First came “ghosting,” the vanishing act that made it normal—if not exactly acceptable—for the object of one’s once-reciprocated interest to disappear into the abyss without as much as a mere warning. Now comes its commitment-phobe cousin, courtesy of New York Magazine writer Jason Chen: “benching,” a sports-inspired furthering of the concept of leading someone on. It entails keeping someone hanging for extended periods of time, occasionally throwing them a bone in the form of a casual text, while never allowing for the relationship to transition into anything remotely substantial (i.e., keeping a player on the bench as a backup while you pursue others whom you might prefer to, shall we say, “put in play” first).

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French Girls Know How to Accessorize—Especially for Bastille Day

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Liberté, égalité, fraternité—liberty, equality, fraternity. In our tumultuous, often unpredictable world, one must honor any reason to celebrate these three guiding principles of human camaraderie. Since most of us cannot exactly ring in tomorrow’s Bastille Day by frolicking around revolutionary stomping grounds, we propose that you do the next best thing and channel your inner French citoyenne through the wardrobe staples that truly speak to her liberal spirit—her accessories. Just like the emblematic national motto, the Parisienne’s approach to accessorizing is part of her inherent independent sensibility, rooted in timeless style and personal pieces that truly connect with their owner. A French girl usually goes for discreet, carefully selected accessories that never adhere to trends or overwhelm her outfit, but instead relay her personal story, one unique detail at a time.

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The French Girl’s Guide to Summer Date Style

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Few things beat a great summer date. Be it with your future life partner or merely a fleeting romantic interest, there is something incomparable about that long, breezy, post-dinner stroll through still-warm city streets, feeling like the protagonist of your own indie film. Granted, no nirvana is complete without the perfect outfit, which is where things get tricky, at least for me.

With effortlessness being the ethos of summer, even the most innocent attempt toward allure—such as a black liner, or a heel—feels unnatural in our global warming–induced heat. And yet it’s not like I can allow my inner romantic ingenue to show up to a date in my usual summer uniform of denim cutoffs (i.e., an object of near-constant mockery among my friends). This inner turmoil leads me to believe that summertime date dressing abides by a completely separate sartorial code, one that I have yet to master. And who better to help me than the ever-effortless Parisiennes, originators of the Pinterest Holy Grail of summer romances, from Jane Birkin’s eyelet-clad beach frolics to Romy Schneider’s PG-rated La Piscine ensembles?

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Love the Guy, Hate His Style? Here’s How to (Subtly!) Fix It

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Love and acceptance go hand in hand. Having learned this lesson through trial and error sometime in my mid-20s, I made sure to apply it to the continuation of my dating career, a mission that proved to be particularly difficult when faced with men of, how shall I put it, questionable sartorial aesthetics. From square-toed shoes to violently patterned Carhartt sweatshirts to Givenchy skirts artfully layered over leggings, I encountered—and practiced Buddhist levels of patience on—men of all stylistic visions. Yet, no PC approach could have prepared me for the prospect of bringing a certain Yamamoto cape–donning ex to a family dinner. In what I still consider to be one of my weakest moments, I resorted to the trusted-yet-cowardly “it’s not you, it’s me” cop-out, figuring it was for the greater good of sparing him my Russian father’s inquisitive stare. Months after our breakup, I wondered whether I had been too rash in disregarding an otherwise excellent human based on something as superficial as his outerwear. After all, isn’t there an entire school of thought centered around the notion that a man’s wardrobe eventually becomes a reflection of the tastes of his significant other, a sartorial spinoff of the popular “Behind every successful man is a great woman”? And so I turned to a group of women with far better track records than I in the dating department to see if a man’s tastes, or at the very least his wardrobe, can, indeed, be changed.

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The Fashion Girl’s Guide to Creating the Perfect Online Dating Profile

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An important PSA for all the single ladies out there: Summer is right around the corner, and you’re officially out of excuses to postpone your dating agenda. All your lackluster cold-weather claims (My sweats are too cozy, I would rather watch Scandal, and Who needs real men when you have Fitzgerald Grant?) are now rendered invalid. In fact, these days, dating is nothing if not a total joyride for the homebody, providing anyone with a functional smartphone with the tools to spark up a connection from the comfort of their very own athleisure ensemble. Since your romantic future may now hinge on the few carefully selected photos you present to the online dating world en masse, here are some key tips for creating an online dating profile that will put your best foot, angle, and outfit forward, all while effectively relaying the message you want to send out into the world. Welcome to the fashion girl’s guide to your online dating profile.

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The Chic Freelancer’s Wardrobe Does Not Include Sweatpants

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A longtime proponent of the office job with an affinity for planning my next-day work outfit as a sort of meditative bedtime mantra in lieu of counting sheep—blue jeans, blazer for client meeting, those stacked-heel booties for that post-work date, ommm—I recently switched professional gears and found myself simultaneously juggling a few freelance projects, most of which could be easily managed from the comfort of my living room. The initial couple of months were fantastic: My skin was glowing from its makeup-free regimen, I relished in being the only one of my friends not to need snow boots during the winter storm, and a small fortune was saved that would have otherwise been spent at Barneys. I realized that with a few notable exceptions, I had pretty much survived the entire winter in one stretchy pair of Frame Denim jeans and an assortment of cotton marinières—and not of the cool La Ligne variety. The real wake-up call came when a guy I was seeing asked me to a benefit and seemed quite relieved when I arrived looking relatively put-together in an ensemble (Thakoon pencil skirt, Céline heels) left over from my days of chic Parisian office attire. Later that evening, he confessed. He had been worried. Apparently, during a recent mid-work session rendezvous at the Bowery Hotel, I had “looked a little rough.” Rough how? “Oh, you know . . . like you hadn’t washed your hair.” A small part of me died. Had I really fallen subject to the standard cliché of the millennial freelancer: in perpetual pajama party mode, schlepping around coffee shops with a Carhartt beanie masking her dirty mane? Redemptive measures had to be taken, and quickly. I decided to ask my other freelancer friends, all poised women whom I had never seen leave the house sans manicure, on how they manage to avoid the seemingly inevitable sartorial slump that comes with having nobody to answer to but yourself.

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