Greetings and happy hump day! For any newcomers to the blog, I want to say welcome! I typically publish a new fashion or beauty post five days a week, but I’ve been traveling, so I didn’t post my usual content during that time. I’m home now, and back to my regular working hours, so things will start looking more like a fashion blog around here.
One of my most popular regular blog features is What I Wore Lately, which is where I round up my everyday outfits from the past couple of weeks, usually on a Wednesday. Today it’s all about what I wore on our summer vacation in Italy! I’ll also share a bit about what my family members wore, in case you’re interested.
What I Wore Lately: Ten Days in Italy
SIZING NOTES: I’m 5’5″ and I usually wear a small in tops and dresses, a 29 in jeans, and a size 8 shoe. Gifted items are indicated by c/o; everything else I purchased myself.
Let’s kick it off with my travel outfit. We took an overnight flight directly from Philadelphia to Rome, which was about eight hours, so I wanted to be comfortable. I also didn’t know if our rooms would be ready when we arrived in Rome, so I needed something I could wear to explore the city for a few hours, if necessary.
These Vuori joggers are super lightweight and also stretchy and comfortable, and they worked out perfectly. I wore them to fly home, as well. My slub knit tee is Vuori, as well, and I love that it’s somewhat elevated yet still casual enough to offset the joggers.
I also brought my Athleta Pranayama Wrap, which always comes with me when I travel. Even though it was a hot day, I was glad I had it on the plane, and it came in handy at the hotel when I wanted something to throw on over my pajamas in the room.
Finally, these Taos sneakers are the heaviest, bulkiest shoes I brought to Italy, so I wore them to save room in my suitcase. Plus, they look better with this sporty outfit than sandals.
Here, you can see how my outfit fared after an overnight flight and a few hours traipsing around Rome in 99° heat! 🥵 The belt bag is what I used as my “cabin bag” – a concept I borrowed from Jen Lefforge, and it’s also what I carried with me to walk around Rome while we waited for our rooms to be ready.
Okay, I promise, I won’t go into that much description about every outfit, but choosing a travel outfit requires a bit of strategizing, so I wanted to explain my thought process.
Once we were able to access our rooms, I was happy to take a shower and wash my face. I never removed my makeup on the plane, so I went ahead and did that and reapplied before going out to dinner that night.
Here we are “in the wild” or, you know, on the streets of Rome. (I did a full recap of our stay in Rome so I will just talk about outfits here.)
This is what I wore to tour the Colosseum, Forum, and Palatine Hill on one of our hottest days in Rome. The Tommy Bahama dress was a last minute addition to my travel capsule. The ponte fabric is super soft and comfortable, and because it’s made primarily of TENCEL, it held up well to the heat. It also has UPF 30, which is a nice bonus.
Here’s how we all dressed for the day. (Yes, my son wears pants everywhere! He is impervious to heat and cold; I credit it to years of being a summer camp counselor in all types of weather.) Caroline’s dress is an older style from Reformation, and I linked the rest of their outfits below.
David’s 76ers tee // similar Under Armour pants // Paul’s hat // / Maui Jim sunnies // Unbound Merino tee (option/option) // AG shorts // ALTRA trail runners (more options) // Becca’s tank // shorts // sneakers
I showered and changed before going out to dinner that night, but I just stuck my hair up in a clip so I didn’t have to wash it.
Unfortunately, I don’t have a link for my Lulu-B dress. I bought it at a boutique, and it appears that brand is only sold through small retailers. I love the style, especially the design of the back, but I don’t love how the fabric looks like performance apparel. It’s a concession I was willing to make for the comfort and flattering silhouette. I also wanted to bring a few dresses that I could easily wash and dry in my hotel room, if need be, and this one fit the bill.
As you may remember from my Rome recap, I woke up with an upset stomach the morning we were supposed to tour the Pantheon and see the Trevi Fountain, so Paul and the kids went without me. Our guide also took them to a shopping mall that’s built around an ancient aqueduct, which was discovered during the construction of the mall.
They all were sending me pictures as I was laying in bed, nursing a ginger ale, so I sent this one back…
I was so delighted to find this in the drink fridge in my room. It brings me right back to my childhood. I always liked Schweppes Ginger Ale best, and in a glass bottle… there’s nothing better when you’re nursing a queasy stomach. I shudder to think what I probably paid for it, as they way over charge for those in-room drinks, but it was totally worth it.
Anyway, since we didn’t have a tour scheduled until the afternoon on Saturday, Paul took me around to see what I missed the previous morning, and of course I had to take a picture beside the ancient aqueduct in the mall. This is still the main aqueduct that pumps water from the Spanish Steps to the Vatican City. You can read more about it HERE.
That’s also where I purchased my Loewe bag. It was a total splurge, but I was supposed to get the VAT tax back (more on that in another post!) and prices are better in Europe.
I knew I wanted to get a new bag while we were in Italy, although I planned to purchase an Italian brand. I’ve had my eye on this one for some time, and when I started looking at them in this cool Roman shopping mall, I just knew it was the one I wanted to commemorate the trip.
Funny story, though… I thought it was charcoal grey. It wasn’t until I got back to my room and started looking for the link online that I realized the Loewe Flamenco doesn’t come in charcoal grey. I guess it’s the Dark Khaki Green.
At first, I was horrified that I made that mistake, and then I started laughing because it’s so ridiculous. Who spends that much on a bag, only to find out it’s not their desired color!?!
Fortunately, I do love olive green, and it should complement my fall/winter wardrobe nicely. And the more I thought about it, I decided that I have so many neutral handbags, it’s fun to have something unique to my collection from Italy.
Okay, sorry for that minor detour, but I had to share that story! Back to what I wore…
That afternoon was our tour of the Vatican, and our tour guide told me my dress would be fine for the Vatican’s strict dress code, and I had no issues. (It’s an older style that I can’t link, but you can take a look at current Eileen Fisher dress options for something similar.)
Caroline’s dress is Son de Flor, and Paul is wearing another one of his merino wool tees with these Lululemon pants. He says he brought three of thos t-shirts (as well as some Smartwool socks) and they never smelled, even after repeated use. I think David’s wearing Vuori in this photo; he loves their Strato Tech Tees. And Becca loves these AE cargos and v-neck pocket tee.
We wore the same clothes out to dinner that night, but I changed back to sandals.
The next morning, I wore this Columbia active sheath dress with UPF 50 for traveling from Rome to Perugia by car. (You can read my Perugia Recap HERE, if you missed it.)
I changed for dinner that night, and since I was having a good hair day, I asked Paul to take some pictures. He didn’t bring his camera, so we just used our iPhones.
I was totally smitten with the doors in Perugia… all over Italy, really, but I took so many pictures of doors as we were walking around Perugia! It just baffles me that people actually live and work behind those doors. This isn’t Disney World, y’all! (I think I’ve been at Epcot one too many times.)
I decided to take a break from dresses and wore shorts and a tank for our city tour of Perugia the next day.
Becca is wearing this American Eagle henley tee with another pair of those Blooming Jelly running shorts, and her bag is this Sherpani anti-theft crossbody. Caroline bought her dress in Perugia, and we bought Paul’s linen shorts in Perugia, as well. His shirt is from Tommy Bahama.
I changed before we went to Assisi that afternoon because I was afraid I wouldn’t be able to go inside the basilica in my shorts and tank top, although Becca had no issue, so I guess I didn’t need to worry.
Someone recommended this Fjällräven brand to me, and maybe this exact dress, and I really like it. I think the style is cute with the drawstring waist, and I was happy to wear something different than the knit sheaths I felt like I had been wearing the whole trip, but my family members didn’t care for this fabric. One of my girls said it looks like a raincoat. Oh, well! I like it, so I wore it anyway,
I changed yet again for dinner that night. I wanted to wear something a little less sporty, more feminine and fun, so I chose this floral tiered split neck dress. I always feel like this dress looks a bit junior on me, but the girls tell me it’s all good. I like the black one better, but it was dirty, and I was getting tired of wearing black, so I wore the floral.
I threw on the same shorts, tank, and sneakers from the day before for our tour of Gubbio. This was probably my favorite day of our entire trip. The kids declined to come, said they wanted a day to relax and refill their tanks, so Paul and I went alone while they hung out in Perugia.
Our tour guide, Daniela, was so funny; we had the same guide for both days in each city, so we had the chance to get to know her a bit the day before. When we climbed out of the car and met her in Gubbio minus the kids, she exclaimed, Ooooh, honey MOON! I have to say, it was kind of nice to have day to ourselves.
And if you’ll indulge me one more picture… I just love this town. I want to rent a house for a month and pretend I live there.
And here’s what Paul wore… his shirt and shorts are part of the #NSale, which ends on Sunday. He got these shorts in two colors, and I think I might grab the shirt in another color for him while it’s still on sale.
I wore that Lulu-B dress to dinner that night, and then the next day, it was off to Florence!
I didn’t like how the Lululemon dress was gaping at the armholes, so I changed before we went out to explore. This is also what I wore out to dinner that night.
The next day was our walking tour of Florence, and the weather had cooled off quite a bit. It was actually a bit chilly, so I used the opportunity to wear my stripe button-up. I threw this in to wear with this outfit, and also to potentially wear over the pink Lululemon dress, if I needed a layer.
I ditched the button-up when we went back out to shop and explore more of Florence after our tour was over, and I decided to break out my new Loewe bag. I also changed into this Vuori tank because I got a stain on the Michael Stars one I was wearing earlier.
I purchased this dress at the Max Mara in Florence that afternoon, so I wore it out to dinner that night.
The next day, we did a tour of the Medici palaces and then spent time wandering around that afternoon, and I wore the Lulu-B dress again.
Enjoying an Aperol Spritz at a sidewalk cafe in Florence, as one does…
I changed into this white Tommy Bahama sheath for dinner that night, and our family pictures. I wanted to wear it earlier, but I was afraid of getting a stain on it, so I saved it for our family photo shoot. It’s 55% linen/43% Tencel/2% spandex, so very cool and comfortable, and I love the silhouette. I might order it in another color to have for future trips.
I wore the same dress the next day to walk around and shop on my last morning in Florence. We also went to the wine window, which I shared more about in my Florence recap.
And then for our final night in Italy, we drove out to the Tuscan countryside for a wine tasting and winery tour, and I wore the black linen tank and shorts again. Paul got a lot of use out of this outfit, didn’t he!?!
And that’s is a wrap! If you made it to the end you deserve a cookie. Or a glass of wine, or something.
I’ve had a lot of questions about if I’m happy with what I packed, etc. I wore everything in my suitcase at least once, so I do feel like I pretty much nailed it with the packing in that regard.
My only caveat is that I found myself wishing I had some flowy, prettier dresses to rotate in among my more practical options. Mine all felt very sporty/preppy/suburban housewife, while I saw so many lovely dresses walking around Italy… especially in Perugia and Florence. I did shop and try to find something while we were there, but nothing was ever quite right, probably because that’s not my typical style aesthetic.
At the end of the day, I was glad I took more dresses than shorts outfits, and I didn’t feel limited at all by not being able to do more mixing and matching. The dresses were comfortable and easy to throw on and go with any of my shoe options, and I felt put together and appropriate for most situations. I wish I’d found the satin Max Mara dress sooner, but at least I got to wear it once while we were there.
Before we lay Italy to rest, I plan to write one more post about the more practical items we packed, what we used, what we didn’t, etc. Let me know if you have any specific questions about that!
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