Get: French Tennies
Want a little French in your life? Then snatch up a pair of the iconic French run-around shoe, the Bensimon Tennis Elastique. These versatile slip-ons debuted in the 70's and are still sported all over France; they're like Keds, but très chic. They even have their own Wikipedia article, click here to read it. They are casual, classy, comfortable, and, well, français.
The Bensimon Tennis Elastique sells for 30 Euros. Unfortunately for you and me, Bensimon doesn't ship to America. (I wrote and told them I'd like to be their American sales rep, no response yet.) Sometimes online retailer ShopBop sells them for a blasphemous $55; right now there is one pair on sale for $38.50. To help you with accurate sizing: I'm a 7.5 in ballet flats, an 8 in running shoes, and I wear a 38 in Bensimon. (pronunciation guide: ben-SEE-mohn)
If you're traveling to France, please let me know and I'll place an order. They pack down easy, like flip-flops.
"You don't need to be born in Paris to have French style." -Inès de la Fressange