How to Dress Like an Italian…

I have been living and working in Milan for just under four years now. Before deciding to move here I had done a lot of traveling (mainly around South America and Asia) and these experiences taught me a lot about the world and who I am. But I think by actually living in a country for a long period of time you can learn so much about the culture and way of life.

Being in Italy has taught me about food, Italian language, emotion, creativity and has brought a new perspectives on how to live life.  Living in one of the fashion capitals of the world has also taught me a lot about Style, because Italian’s, no matter their age or background know how to appreciate Style.  Regardless of the occasion they always dress well and manage to pull off a chic yet effortless type of vibe.  They appreciate quality over quantity, something quite rare in today’s world of fast fashion.  And they have an eye for colour and adding the final details and accessories to a look.   Throughout all my travels I have looked to other cultures for inspiration on how to dress and Italy has definitely become one of my top inspiration points and has such a place in my heart.

If you love the Italian Style as much as me here is my quick guide of How to Dress Like an Italian…

1. ALWAYS wear good shoes.  May it be boots, heels, loafers or sandals – invest in high quality leather shoes.  They last much longer than anything from the high-street and lift your outfit to the next level of stylish.

2. The same applies for Handbags.  Ok they are expensive, but instead of buying 10 high-street handbags at £40 a go, buy one higher quality bag for the year.  Italians always have a beautiful bag and pair of shoes as the base of their outfit which up-levels the look, even if they are just pairing it with jeans and a white t-shirt.

3. Shop in Sample Sales and Outlets.  Italians love designer brands, especially in Milan, the city of fashion! Milan and the surrounding areas are full of outlet stores and secret Sample Sales and they are absolutely amazing for bagging designer pieces at 50-70% off.  I like to buy my key pieces here to get something beautiful and timeless and then mix these with cheaper, trend focused pieces from the high-street.

4.  Minimal make-up is more beautiful.

5. But always have painted nails and lipstick to add that flash of colour.

6. Don’t use fake-tan, just spend more time outside in the sun.  Its better for your skin and gives your skin that beautiful olive tone most Italian women have from all the sunshine.

7. Look at quality and craftsmanship when you shop.  It doesn’t matter if the piece costs £10 or £1000 or what brand it is.  What matters is how it is made and the quality of the fabric.  If something is well made from a beautiful material it will look one million dollars even if it really only cost ten. Especially when worn with your beautiful shoes and bag…

8. Start shopping in Independent Shops and add some unique pieces to your wardrobe.  At home I used to always shop in the big, chain fashion stores but in Italy most businesses are still independently owned.  This means there are more pretty boutiques and unique fashion brands and when you buy something you know everyone else won’t be wearing the same as you.  Check small boutiques, cool weekend markets and shops in the artsy neighborhoods to discover some special pieces.

9.  Its all about looking elegant but effortless.

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