I first saw Amélie as a teen and I immediately warmed to the unusual yet personal camera angles, the curious nature of the quirky female protagonist, and of course Amelie's fashion style. The storyline follows the female lead Amelie and the movie begins by showing her unusual upbringing by two eccentric parents who home school Amélie, as they believe she has a problem with her heart. She withdraws into her imagination and uses it to cope with her loneliness. When she reaches adulthood, she moves out of her family home after her mother dies and tries to make a life for herself. One day, she discovers a box full of memories belonging to a young boy, hidden within her apartment. Amélie challenges herself to find the man whom this box belongs to and decides that if she finds him, she will dedicate her life to helping others.
The movie is given a retro style yellow/green tinge, which reminds me of old, yellowed Polaroids. IMO, this style keeps the movie timeless and gives a nod to the narrative centering around a memory box full of nostalgic items and aging childhood photos. Plus, it allows the ideas behind the storyline to be applied to any person from any time period; the ideas that no man (or woman) is an "island," that people need human companionship, and that it is a great thing to help others.
There is a real sense of innocence and naïvety about Amélie — which is probably due to her sheltered upbringing and lack of life experience. Her styling mirrors these attributes: her hair is cut in a youthful bob, she wears little makeup, and sports clothing that often makes her appear younger than she is. However, Amélie's outfits are heavily influenced by chic, laid back Parisian fashion as Paris is where the film is set.
So if you loved Amélie or you are a fan of French fashion, then here's how you can achieve youthful Parisian style inspired by Amélie.
Amélie is often seen in basic garments, such as this scoop neck tee. She wears a bright red color, which is a great choice to liven up this simple t-shirt. Sometimes less really is more.
Scoop Neck Tee, $2-$10, wetseal.com
This cheery plus size tee is a winner in the style stakes. Just like Ms. Amélie Poulain's, it is a simple yet effectively eye-catching top. Wear a lipstick in a matching shade and pair with a black pencil skirt to exude effortless Parisian elegance.
The Laid Back Maxi Skirt
Amélie tends to stay covered up, but when she does expose her body she usually shows off a demure, feminine area such as her ankles or décolletage, which proves that you don't need to wear risqué outfits to look attractive. Here she is pictured in a burgundy maxi skirt. Ms. Poulain's wardrobe often consists of earthy, warm colors such as burgundy and forest green, thus juxtaposing nicely with the acidic hues of the film.
Mad Cool Skirt, $88, freepeople.com
This laid back maxi from Free People would really suit Amélie's style. It has a slouchy fit that enables the wearer to look effortlessly cool — just like our favorite leading lady.
The Girly Polka Dot Cardigan
Amélie had an extremely sheltered childhood and thus as an adult she is now shaping her own destiny and creating exciting opportunities for herself. However, her wardrobe still harks back to her childhood and her clothes often have an air of girlish charm about them. This top exemplifies that although she is pushing her boundaries and attempting to get some more life experiences under her belt, she is still quite naïve.
Yellow & White Polka Dot Three-Quarter Sleeve Button Up Knit Cardigan, $38, unique-vintage.com
This sunshine yellow polka dot cardigan is perfect for the summer months. Just throw it on over a pretty tea dress and you're good to go. Plus, the addition of super cute flower buttons gives it a traditionally feminine yet nostalgic edge, which is perfect for someone wanting to channel Amélie.
The Floral Headscarf
Amélie is rocking a vintage vibe here in this floral headscarf, which adds an elegant twist to her outfit.
Orange, White, Red & Blue Floral Silk Scarf, $38, rokit.co.uk
Choose a floral scarf featuring blooms in contrasting red and blue shades à la Ms. Poulain. If you're looking for a super thrifty version, why not head to your local thrift store and have a rummage for a bargain?
The Clomping Shoe
Amélie is the master of pairing feminine outfits with masculine elements as seen here. She is wearing a long skirt finished off with a pair of heavy, boyish shoes. This styling idea reminds me of dressing up in my mom's clothes as a kid while still wearing my own, kiddish shoes.
Dr. Martens 1461 Mono 3-Eye Oxford, $110, urbanoutfitters.com
Of course Dr. Martens fit the bill. They will add edginess to a feminine outfit and give your look an overall quirky feel like Amélie's attire.
The Smart Coat
Throughout the movie Amélie is seen wearing a selection of smart coats. Here she is pictured in a lovely green one that complements the backdrop perfectly.
Ganni Double Button Front Long Cotton Coat, $163, asos.com
Steal Amélie's style in a classic coat such as this double button longline one. Parisian style is simple yet sophisticated and this coat ticks all the boxes.
Stay elegant, classic, and curious like Ms. Poulain and wear laid back Parisian style.
Images: UGC Fox Distribution; France 3 Cinéma; Canal+; UGC; Giphy (2); Courtesy Brands