Open my heart and you will see, graved inside of it, Italy.
- Robert Browning
Today I landed in Florence, Italy. For those of you who don’t know, my heritage is a mix of French and Italian and I was so excited to finally visit the country that my family emigrated from all those years ago. I felt really calm as my flight landed and after checking in at my hotel I decided to hit the streets and explore my new (temporary) neighbourhood. It might sound strange, but a part of me felt like I’d visited Italy before, I found it easy to navigate the streets and the locals were friendly and up for a chat as I wandered past. Yes, all of those Italian clichés are true; you have to try the food, see the art and experience la dolce vita.
I decided to take a spur of the moment trip to a local outlet village known as The Mall, my visit was fairly unsuccessful but on my way back from Santa Maria Novella station, I noticed a name I had been told to check out while I was in town - Otto Marchesi. The best part was that it was only around the corner from my hotel. I took it as fate and wandered in to have a look around the small outlet.
As soon as I entered the store I saw a face that I recognized from hours searching fashion and style blogs online. His name is Emanuele Pecorella; one of the most stylish men in Italy. Emanuelle’s passion was explosive and although we only spent a brief moment together I picked up some great tips from him. Language wasn’t a barrier and he told me so much about style in such a brief period of time.
One of the interesting things that he taught me during my visit this afternoon was my idea the Italian collar. I now know that the collar I’ve long considered to be Italian was actually known as a French collar here in Italy. The French collar has a cutaway or extreme cutaway where as an original Italian collar is semi-spread.