Master Over 73 Names For Clothes In French

Paris, France is the fashion capital of the world! French clothing vocabulary must be in your vernacular if you plan to visit France.

Clothing is a tremendous part of French culture – think haute couture. You’ll notice that everyone, even French school children are dressed to the nines. Talking about fashion is also a topic many people discuss so it’s important to know what clothes in French are called.

Let’s take a look at what different articles of clothing are called and how to talk about clothes like a native French speaker.

Let’s go!

What Is The French Word For Clothing?

The first thing to be aware of is that all objects in French are given a masculine or feminine determiner. Here are the grammar articles to use when discussing French vocabulary for clothes:

  • Singular feminine: une
  • Plural feminine: la
  • Singular masculine: un
  • Plural masculine and feminine: les

The French word in general for a single piece of clothing is un vêtement although clothing in French is often referred to in the plural sense as les vêtements. To sound like a native speaker you can also say les fringues which is slang for clothes.

Traditional French Clothing

Traditional French Clothes

What did French fashion look like in the past?! As we know, the French have always been considered to be fashionable. Even though traditional dress may look odd to us today and varied across different districts within France, these frocks were once high fashion.

Traditional Clothing For French Women

Women would traditionally wear an outfit consisting of four main pieces. French women’s clothing has four basic pieces. Underneath everything would be a chemise. Then there would be a jupon, which is similar to a skirt, and if a woman wears more than one, it was meant to be a show of status.

A top would be a mantlet which is sort of like a short waistcoat that served as a shirt. A square piece of cloth called a fichu was then worn around the neck and shoulders like a scarf. Finally, the outfit was completed with a cap or some other headwear.

The typical pieces of a women’s daily dressing attire would be:

  • a chemise (une chemise)
  • a jupon (un jupon)
  • a mantlet (un manteau)
  • a fichu (un fichu)
  • a hat (une casquette/un chapeau)
  • a cap (un bouchon)

These outfits would vary in color and material across the different regions of France. Little girls would wear the same kind of outfits.

Traditional Clothing For French Men

Men would traditionally wear an outfit of six pieces. They too would wear a chemise, but it served as an undershirt. Bottoms would be culottes, or knee-length pants which would also have knee-high socks on top. Then on top of those would be mitasses which are garters meant to protect from puddles.

Over the undershirt would be a guillette which is a vest and then a capote or justacorp was worn as a heavy coat.

The typical pieces of a men’s daily dressing attire would be:

  • a chemise (une chemise)
  • culottes (les jupes-culottes)
  • hosery (la bonneterie)
  • knee-high socks (les chaussettes hautes)
  • mitasses (les mitasses)
  • a guillette (une guillette)
  • a capote (une capote)
  • a justacorp (une justacorp)

The color and style of the outfit would differ across the different regions of France and little boys would wear the same outfits as their fathers.

French Clothing Vocabulary

These are the common types of clothing that exist today. We’ve separated the types and styles of clothing into seasons and other categories so you can more easily learn French clothes names to find what you’re looking for at the shop, market, or mall.

French Words For Summer Clothes

Summer clothes in French

Summertime fashion some may argue is the most fun fashion. You can get away with so much more in the hot temperatures. Here are some of the common clothing items in French for summertime.

EnglishFrench TranslationPronunciation
A beltUne ceinture
A bikiniUn bikini
A crop topUn crop top
A dressUne robe
ShortsLes shorts
A skirtUne jupe
A swimsuitUn maillot de bain
A t-shirtUn t-shirt
A tank topUn débardeur

Fall Clothes In French

Fall clothes in French

These are some typical fall clothes you may wish to purchase in France.

EnglishFrench TranslationPronunciation
A blazerUne veste
A coatUn manteau
A hoodieUn sweat a capuche
A jacketUne veste
A polo shirtUn polo
A sweaterUn chandail

French Words For Winter Clothes

Winter clothes in French

Ah, winter. The time to get all snuggly and stay warm. The French have some of the most fashionable winter clothes around. Here are some popular winter clothing items in French.

EnglishFrench TranslationPronunciation
A button-down shirtUne chemise boutonnée
A hatUne casquette
A long sleeve shirtUne chemise à manches longues
The pantsLe pantalon
A scarfUne écharpe
The glovesLes gants
A sweatshirtUn sweat-shirt
The trousersLe pantalon
A vestUne veste
A Winter coatUn manteau d’hiver

Spring Clothes In French

Spring clothes in French

With spring comes new hope and color! Lots and lots of colors to take you out of the drab and dreary winter. These are common clothes people wear in springtime.

EnglishFrench TranslationPronunciation
The cargo pantsLe pantalon cargo
A dress shirtUne chemise habillée
The jeansLe jean
The leggingsLe legging
A raincoatUn imperméable
The shirtsLes chemises
The socksLes chaussettes

Business Wear In French

Business clothes in French

Are you working a professional job in a French-speaking country? Then you may need to purchase business wear. Here are some typical business-related clothing items in French.

EnglishFrench TranslationPronunciation
A blouseUne blouse
The cufflinksLes boutons de manchette
A suitUn costume
A tieUne cravate

Under Garments And Pyjamas

Underwear in French

The all-important undergarments. They really do play an important and vital role in fashion and we can thank the French for inventing lingerie! Here are all the French words to talk about your underwear needs.

EnglishFrench TranslationPronunciation
The BoxersLes boxeurs
A braUn soutien-gorge
The briefsLes slips
The lingerieLa lingerie
The pjamasLe pyjama
A sports braUn soutien-gorge de sport
A thongUne lanière
The underwearLe sous-vetement
The pantyhoseLe collant

Shoes In French

Shoes in French

It seems the French have shoes for every occasion. We’ve listed the most common types of shoes here however know that there is a certain shoe dress code for events when in France.

EnglishFrench TranslationPronunciation
The bootsLes bottes
The flip flopsLes tongs
The heelsLes talons
The hiking bootsLes chaussures de randonnée
The slippersLes chaussons
The sneakersLes baskets
The trainersLes formateurs

Different Fabrics In French

Fabrics in French

When purchasing clothes, you may have a particular preference for certain fabrics. For instance, cotton over polyester. Here’s how to say the common fabrics used in today’s fashion.

EnglishFrench TranslationPronunciation
The canvasLa toile
The clothLe tissu
The corduroyLe velours côtelé
The cottonLe coton
The denimLe jean
The laceLe lacet
The leatherLe cuir
The linenLe linge
The polyesterLe polyester
The rayonLa rayonne
The rubberLa gomme
The satinLe satin
The silkLa soie
The spandexL’élasthanne
The velvetLe velours
The woolLa laine

Additional Terms Related To Clothes In French

Here are some additional French vocabulary relating to clothes and shopping in French.

EnglishFrench TranslationPronunciation
The clothingL’habillement
The men’s clothingLes vêtements pour hommes
A size smallUne petite taille
A size mediumUne taille moyenne
A size largeUne taille grande
To try onPour essayer
Women’s clothingLes vêtements pour femmes

Phrases To Use When Shopping I French

You may need to ask for the changing room or where to find a certain item while shopping. It’s also helpful to know how to ask for different sizes, so here you go!

Shopping phrases in French
Where can I find gloves?Où puis-je trouver des gants?
Do you have any winter coats?Avez-vous des manteaux d’hiver?
Do you have tighter trousers?Avez-vous des pantalons plus serrés?
Do you have this in a larger size?Avez-vous ceci dans une taille plus grande?
Do you have this in a smaller size?Avez-vous ceci dans une taille plus petite?
Where is the changing room?Où sommes-nous le vestiaire?
Can I try this on?Est-ce que je peux l’essayer?

There you go! We hope this vocabulary has helped you learn French!

Study More French With The Ling App!

Now that you’ve got a resource to practice clothes in French, want to learn even more French words and French vocabulary? Jump right in right now and learn over 50 French adjectives which will help you to describe the clothes you see.

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