Effortlessly chic, the Italians instinctively know how to dress and are considered amongst the most stylish in the world. With the phenomenal success of Italian fashion designers such as Gucci and Prada, it is a style with global appeal.
Rooted in the concept of ‘la bella figura’ – which translates as ‘the beautiful figure’ – the Italian approach to fashion is all about making a good impression. To many Italians, fashion is not just about dressing well, it is the way to live a beautiful life. With a focus on investing in quality, the Italians have perfected an elegant and timeless look.
So, if the dolce vita inspires you, here’s how to live an Italian lifestyle with our fashion tips.
Aim for casual elegance
Less is more in Italian fashion, which also mirrors the Italians’ mannered approach to life. The result is a timeless, easy-to-wear style that exudes a confident yet casual elegance.
The key to this look is balance between quality fabrics, colour, silhouette, and accessories to create an easy harmony in the final look. So, if you choose a bright colour for your jacket, for example, you should balance out the ‘drama’ with minimal accessories.
Embrace ‘slow fashion’
Italian style is the antithesis of fast fashion in that it prioritises quality over quantity. This approach to slow fashion means investing in quality pieces that are beautifully made and designed to last. It is no wonder that luxe fabrics such as cashmere and merino are mainstays of Italian fashion. With its timeless approach to style, the Italian ‘la bella figura’ ethos is also not averse to revitalising old pieces and bringing them back to life.
It’s no surprise that a capsule wardrobe consisting of high-quality basics is the go-to for many fashion-conscious Italians. To emulate the Italian style, aim for around 80% of your wardrobe to be your core basics and buy the best you can.
Opting for timeless basics means you can then keep your wardrobe fresh and up to date by simply adding a few accessories or a new statement piece each season.
Invest in statement pieces and accessories
Every Italian outfit should have a stand-out piece that takes it from the ordinary to the elegantly extraordinary. In fact, the Italian style is famous for its accessories – think over-sized statement sunglasses and a slick of red lipstick or an expensive watch, and you know you have a classic look.
The art of using accessories is to add a touch of flair that reflects your own personality. But they also need to be timeless, well-made, and stylish.
Statement pieces such as a cashmere coat, designer Louis Vuitton handbag, or a pair of must-have shoes are more of an investment. But chosen well, and you have a few versatile pieces designed to last that will help to transform your Italian-inspired wardrobe into something truly special.
Accentuate your best bits
Italian style is all about enhancing what you have and showcasing what you love most about yourself. But it is always done with elegance and timeless style.
Italian fashion designers are renowned for clothes that work with the body without going overtly sexy. Instead, you get beautifully clean lines, tantalising touches, and a grown-up elegance that is a joy to wear.
To embrace the Italian style, opt for clothes that enhance your body and boost your confidence – sexy and elegant is the perfect way to achieve that ‘la bella figura’ look!
Add some drama!
And finally, Italians are known for their passion, which is also reflected in their love of fashion. So, no matter how low-key, no outfit should be without its own touch of the dramatic if you are to capture that unique Italian style.
The key to adding a little drama to your Italian-inspired look is to keep it timeless and avoid the latest trends. Instead, play around with the proportions or silhouette of an outfit to include an element of surprise. Or a pop of colour against a typically muted background, retro-shaped sunglasses, or an oversized tote bag are all everyday elements that can easily add a touch of drama to your outfit.
Get the balance right, and you are well on the way to embracing the drama, passion, elegance, and confidence of an Italian fashionista!