The internet is full of recipes for pain Français. Choose the one that seems right for your kitchen, because people have varied results depending on many factors. There is a detailed tutorial at The Sour Dough blog, based upon the French bread recipe and method of Julia Child. Here is another instructive page, at the Smithsonian museum, which houses Julia Child’s television kitchen. Remember to use only unbleached white flour, and to create moisture in the oven while your loaves are baking.
M-J’s Home-Made French Bread: through Trial and Error, You May Find the Right Recipe for the Ingredients Available in Your Area
American flour is very soft, even the unbleached variety. So, authentic French-style bread in the U.S. is difficult to make. If you can locate flours from France or Italy, they are perfect for making baguettes. To make French bread or baguettes like the ones shown in my photograph, I use my own starter for the dough, let it rise twice before I form it into loaves, and place a small pottery bowl of water in a very hot oven while the baguettes are baking. This moisture creates a crispy crust.
Here is a good recipe for home-made French-style bread, by King Arthur Flour company: