Packing for the Trip Back to Florence.

chia in suitcase
Chia wants to make sure that I don’t leave her in Seattle! Once the suitcase comes out, she makes her presence known…..

I have a nifty travel crate for her. It is a rolling crate, as well as a backpack and fits under the seat on the plane. She jumps right into it as soon as I ask her to!
chia in travel crate

And while on the subject of packing, I have found a great toiletry kit. I got mine from ebags.com and it is called the Baggallini Flat Fold Organizer. Just noticed it is on sale now, and I highly recommend it.

So excited to see what is new for fall in Florence: the jewelry, the leather jackets, the boots…Will post some photos of the latest Italian fashion next week!

Fabio Is Going on Vacation and Wants to Sell His Handmade Bags at Discount!!!

CT

Fabio, a leather craftsman in Tuscany, who makes unique handbags one at a time, is going on vacation next week, and wants to sell his handbags now at a discount! This is huge!!! These bags are gorgeous, one of a kind and made with the very best materials. He uses the leftover pieces from his son’s factory where leather coats are made. I have a couple of his bags, and everywhere I go even here in Italy, people comment on them. This is my favorite:
green bag

I have my eye on this black mixed media tote bag. When I first felt this bag, I really understood the meaning of, “buttery soft leather.”

Nero Tote Mix Media

So if you are thinking about a new handbag for fall, click on the “store” tab on my website to see Fabio’s bags. If you are interested in one, let me know and I will call Fabio (preferably in the evening after he has had several glasses of wine….) and see what he will do for us!

marrone mix media

rosso con pitone

Scarves Are Flying Out of the Store!

square scarves

The large classic Florentine scarves are a big hit with the unique patented prints, and fabulous colors.

stoles

The oblong stole style scarves are beautiful as well.

Since I have been doing the shopping tours in Florence, I have come to really appreciate the way the Italian women dress. Each outfit has accessories: a scarf, sunglasses, handbag and jewelry. The Italians tend to have fewer pieces of clothing than we do in the States, but with more complete outfits. I find myself concentrating on an ensemble rather than just collecting pieces of clothing and accessories randomly. And now, each outfit is incomplete without a beautiful scarf!

french blue floral

Aqua geometric floral

purple paisley

I have been researching scarves here in the States, and cannot find anything close to the Florentine silk scarves for even twice the price. I am finding that the scarves here are bulky and expensive….except for the scarves that are a fortune! So give me some feedback, please! Would you like to see more scarves in the online store? I can’t seem to have enough of them….

Inquiring Minds Want to Know!

maren on ponte vecchio

Nearly everyone I have taken shopping in Florence has asked me how I got into doing shopping tours. The spring of 2009 I mustered all my courage, and planned a two month stay in Florence. I had never travelled alone, never lived in an apartment alone, did not speak a word of Italian and didn’t know a soul in town. I was scared, but excited too. I enrolled in Italian language school, and spent my afternoons wandering the town and shopping, of course!

I fell in love with Florence, and just had to keep coming back. My best friend came to visit me in 2011, and suggested that I start a little business taking tourists shopping since I knew all the best stores. I could tell everyone that I had to come to Florence for WORK! Shopping is never work for me, however…

Now my friends all want me to bring back treasures from Florence, so this summer I brought large Florentine silk scarves. Am hosting an aperitivo next Sunday to show how to fold the scarves, and to let everyone fall in love with them! And if you can’t make it to my house next Sunday, you can see some of the scarves on the website.

Summer Sizzle in Seattle.

Back here in Seattle for a few months, avoiding the heat in Florence only to find it hotter here! Less humid certainly, but very warm for July in Seattle.

I succumbed to the lure of these gorgeous sandals in Florence, thinking that I wouldn’t wear them too much in Seattle, but wrong! They do NOT have too much bling for the Pacific Northwest. Even better, they are comfortable, and I usually don’t wear such a flat sandal.
sandal 1

I have been wearing these here with white pants, dresses in blue, pink, white and green, jeans, etc. and loving them! The detail, which is so Italian, makes these sandals real standouts. They come in so many styles and colors, too. Might have to get another pair when I get back to Florence.
sandal 2

On the downside, I have come down with a bug, and have been lying in bed for a few days. But the view from my bedroom entertains me with a parade of boats.
view
And Chia is concerned that I don’t feel good, so stays by my side every moment.

chia 1

Scarves, Scarves, Scarves!

A longtime favorite of the Florentine ladies, the large silk scarf is my favorite now too! It can be used so many ways, as Ricardo shows in the video we made. Just posted photos of some of the patented patterns that Ricardo’s shop has started making. You can see them in the photo gallery tab on my home page. yellow:orange shoes scarvesGorgeous! Will post more next week.

Your personal shopper in Florence, Italy