What to Wear When Exploring the Fashion Scene in Florence in the ’50s

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Jet-setting across the seven seas, or simply swapping neighborhood spots, What To Wear When is your weekly column for shopping inspiration.

Milan might be one of the “Big Four” when it comes to fashion capitals, but Florence was actually the first city to put Italian fashion on the map. The southern European country’s first-ever high fashion show took place there in 1951, when Florentine business mogul Giovanni Battista Giorgini invited notable buyers and journalists to stop by his home in the Tuscan capital on their way back from Paris Fashion Week to witness the grandeur and exquisite craftsmanship of Italy by way of nine tailoring houses. The moment forever altered the course of fashion history and cemented Giorgini’s status as a pioneer of the esteemed “Made in Italy” concept.

Fast-forward two decades or so and Florence saw another groundbreaking moment in fashion with the establishment of Pitti Uomo, one world’s most important menswear events. Though Milan Fashion Week incorporates both men’s and women’s collections and was established just a few years after Italy’s inaugural fashion show, Pitti Uomo remains one of the only affairs dedicated solely to menswear, with thousands of dandily dressed menswear enthusiasts flocking to Fortezza da Basso each January and June. This year’s event is especially noteworthy, as Carine will hold her very first runway show in partnership with Florentine retailer LuisaViaRoma in the middle of it. (More details, including how to watch the show live, can be found here.) Should you find yourself yearning to explore the city’s illustrious fashion scene in real life, be sure to peruse CR’s shopping guide, below.

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