The late Vivienne Westwood once said, “You have a more interesting life if you wear impressive clothes,” and Sylvie Grateau, chief marketing officer of the French luxury agency Savoir in Netflix ‘Emily in Paris‘ – who lives life on her terms and knows what she does and doesn’t want, embodies this.
The fictional character, played by Philippine Leroy Balieu, is what you would call “a woman who has it all” or at least a woman over 50 with a great sense of style. The true fashion icon of the TV series, capable of stealing the scene from the protagonist and her friends in a second.
This powerful boss is everything but a cliched stereotype of views on ageing and the passing of time: Sylvie doesn’t let herself get caught up in limited ways of thinking. On the contrary, she is a woman of action. A perfect role model for those who want to break free of the invisibility that has been plaguing 50-somethings for decades.
Sylvie Grateau’s “je ne sai quois“
When you think about a truly chic woman who knows her own mind, well, it’s all in the little details. Sylvie Grateau’s style is the coolest fashion inspiration for women of all ages, but especially for women over 40 and 50 who want office outfits that are both sexy and sophisticated.
Sylvie shows that office attire does not have to be boring; she is proof that you can have fun with fashion at any age. As Vogue explained regarding her wardrobe: “a touch of fantasy, along with a silk shirt in a surprising hue and perfect high-waisted pants, is surely an ultimate secret weapon“.
Sylvie prefers to rock sexy, edgy outfits, she also likes to experiment with the other side of the spectrum through romantic pieces. She is never afraid to cinch things in with amazing belts as well as forget the ‘rules’ about colours that ‘work’ together and rather go with what makes her feel good, adding accessories in a similar hue to tie it all together.
When she enters her office with her impeccable outfits, she reminds us a little of Anna Wintour or rather Miranda Priestly from Sex & The City. Her style, which mixes French touch and 90s minimalism, is definitely seductive, and empowering and shows that charm has nothing to do with age.
If like us, you love how she embraced her inner fierceness and you’ve been impressed by her amazing style, read on to find some inspiration from Sylvie’s look.
Sylvie Grateau’s wardrobe staples
What are the mysterious qualities that make French women so stylish? A word like “effortless” comes to mind.
When we talk about dressing in your 50s, it’s important to consider quality over quantity. As French women teach us, we don’t need an entire closet full of designer clothes, but we need to make sure the pieces we have are durable (and feel expensive).
Sylvie Grateau is truly in a sartorial league of its own, no wonder why women over 50 are on a constant quest to emulate her style. Her wardrobe staples are fluid silk blouses left mainly unbuttoned, powerful blazers, sexy dresses (better in black and with lace details), stiletto heels and statement cuffs to ring the changes and sometimes dopamine-colour coats to pair with her outfits.
She exudes power, confidence, and elegance by wearing fitting midi skirts, and one-shouldered tops, as well as classic button-down shirts from labels like Alexandre Vauthier, Alaïa, and Saint Laurent, often in neutral colours (black, olive, white, brown) with a touch of fuchsias, purples and emerald green.
Her superpower? Being bold and confident – not only when it comes to her career but also her outfits.
Sylvie Grateau’s greatest styling trick
If you want to copy Sylvie’s style from ‘Emily in Paris” (created by costume designer Marylin Fitoussi who also worked with the legendary Patricia Field on the costumes for season one), you first and foremost need to remember that you are a powerful woman, and show that you own the room.
However, there is a secret styling trick you shouldn’t underestimate. While playing around with tops and dresses, textures and colours, Sylvie makes sure to gracefully uncover part of her body, starting with a deep V neckline.
Of course, we don’t ask you to go around showing your cleavage but it’s important to learn this little trick: everybody can look great in a V-neck. It elongates and balances one’s silhouette, and can give the appearance of height and trim down a larger frame, giving you the look of a slimmer neckline, too.
Above all, remember to be fully comfortable with your femininity, age and sexy side. Sylvie is not afraid of pushing the boundaries of what those definitions are while managing to keep her look timeless. And you can do it, too.