Travelling The Florence Fashion Route
Florence might be the home of Sandro Botticelli’s Birth of Venus and Leonardo da Vinci’s Annunciation but there is more than meets the renaissance eye in this Italian city.
Milan has typically been Italy’s go-to destination for all things fashionable but Florence is fast tracking a new revolution by unleashing its own style to pique the interest of the fashion set.
Florence is where artisans, independent designers, boutiques and emerging fashion brands exist alongside luxury fashion houses. This balance brings a vibrant energy to a city where indie cool, street style chic and the fashion must-haves in glossy magazines converge in a piazza.
The real beauty of Florence however is its size. Adored for its compactness and charming streetscapes, this is one city that will not wear out the soles of your shoes no matter how lengthy your shopping trip.
Travelling on foot from the major train station to the world famous Ponte Vecchio only takes 20 minutes. Along the way you can weave through the backstreets or flit from one Florentine piazza to another while exploring many of the bespoke boutiques.
Most tourists tend to stick to the main streets so why not step away from the bustle and comb through the numerous laneways instead. This is where locals hang out and you will stumble upon stores that will not be found in even the city’s best shopping guide.
woman with drive has curated a fashion route through Florence that features the city’s known and hidden retail gems.
26 Via dei Serragli
Let it be known that no one does second hand curation like the Italians or specifically, like Ceri Vintage. Its owner, Danilo Ceri, is an avid collector of the unique pieces you will find in this boutique. Take an adventure through quality vintage shoes, bags, boots and carefully selected fabrics and buttons from a glorious past that have been kept in mint condition.
36 Via dè Pecori
In the heart of Florence stands an independent fashion store where street style, sporty chic and individual expression reigns supreme. Gerard Loft prides itself on curating beautiful, local fashion pieces that are unique and runway-ready. That pride has earned it a place among a list of 100 best retailers in the world by fashion magazine WeAr.
Gerard Loft made its debut in the late 90s. It now stocks rare labels from Europe and has carved a niche in curating pieces for a chic Italian audience. This is where you will find bespoke denim, hand crafted knits, dresses and shoes plus an abundance of accessories ranging from scarves to jewellery. It now has two other stores in the city that cater to those with an edgier fashion palate.
22/red, Lungarno degli Acciaiuoli
This concept boutique is an eclectic haven for kitsch, cool and independent designers. There is a smattering of quality vintage while contemporary designers such as Balenciaga, Gucci and Salvatore Ferragamo also have a home here. There are cabinets of independent jewellery designs dotted throughout and when it comes to casual outfits, there is an abundance of sheer cottons, indie polka dots and stripes for the arty yet always stylish woman.
Ottino Leather Bags
69 Rosso, Via Porta Rossa
The Ottino leather story is one that goes back to the Italian Royal Family who had their bags made by the company back in the 1800s. These days, it is one of the city’s finest leather stores where bespoke handbags, totes and satchels come in a buttery leather finish of deer and calfskin. Choose from an array of season-focused shades from cognac brown, navy, black and rose kissed red. The bags are made in Florence and last a lifetime.
34 R Via Dè Ginori
In this small boutique on Via dei Ginori, you will be entranced by a world of artisan dress jewellery where plexiglass bangles are a must buy. There are oversized earrings, modern necklaces and cuffs cut from plastic in a salute to avant-garde. The artists work behind the service counter in this quirky pitstop where you are guaranteed to find your perfect fit.
Street Doing Vintage
88/r Via dei Servi
This is one of Florence’s best-kept secrets – until now. It is where the fashion set hunts for vintage brands of a bygone era and where Grace Kelly glamour pieces are equally at home among 90s Moschino. There are bags, shoes and dresses spanning the 1930s to the 2000s that are in excellent condition. This is also where The Sartorialist’s fashion director, Jenny Walton, always finds dresses that social media goes bonkers over.
25R Via dello Sprone
The folk behind the cool avant-garde styling that is Bjork have their finger on the sartorial pulse in Florence. Think linen vests with structured silhouettes, silk jumpsuits – some fitted, others baggy – and denim inspired shirt-dresses for an ideal day look. The medley of international and local labels includes Wood Wood, Matthew Miller and Studio Pretzel.
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