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Italians do it Better

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Italians do it Better
On a recent trip to Milan, I was reminded that Italian woman are truly the world's most stylish women. Everywhere you walk or dine, women of all ages dress to their own personal style with such elegance and grace. The key word would be “confidence”. But where does this confidence stem from? Who taught them to dress like this? And more to the point: can us Australian women have what she's having?

An extract from the book Michelin Green Guide Italy states “Italians seem to have inherently good taste: opting for classic, well-made clothes, rather than experimental, disposable fashion. The style imperative applies as much to those who can afford to shop high end or as the locals who go to the markets. There is no-off duty for Italians, dressing casually is no excuse for shabby, slovenly attire”.

So the “secret” to Italian chic is not about constantly keeping up with fashion's grinding rotation, but discovering your personal brand of classic style and grace amid fashion's perpetual state of flux.

People-watching has always been a slight obsession of mine. I love watching the Italian women walk about the city looking so chic and so confident. The way they just throw things together—old with new, trendy with classic—and it truly works! Think of style icons and today's fashion influencers Olivia Palermo and Giovanna Battaglia. Both exude a unique style that is unapologetic, full of confidence and completely their own.

So how can we hope to emulate Italian style culture when we Australians dress like we are always at the beach or the gym? No, there is no crime in embracing a relaxed style. But while we love our fashion, perhaps at times we Australian women have championed the “effortless glamour” concept just a little too literally: transitioning our morning activewear into our all-day uniform of choice?

It goes without saying that a European woman would never wear activewear out of the class she is attending let alone, to go to the shopping mall. So maybe it is time to step up before we step out?

Here are some tips, to help you expand your confidence to dressing with elegance and style:

  • Yes, you have to make just a little effort to feel great (but it's worth it!);
  • Investing in good lingerie is essential;
  • Understand what flatters your shape best;
  • Invest in high-quality wardrobe basics that suit your shape;
  • Build your outfit on one statement piece;
  • A chic statement bag is a must,
  • Always be comfortable, but neat and tidy, a good belt is an investment piece;
  • Confidence will come naturally when you look and feel uber chic!

Save buying on Statement pieces that come and go with the seasons, and instead rent those pieces, and keep investing in the best quality basics, trousers, shirts, jackets that will last the test of time.

And finally, as my mother has always said, it is better to be over dressed then under dressed...