I grew up in New York within an Italian family. Studying in Italy was very important for me because I wanted to discover a deeper understanding of my Italian heritage. When I found the Lorenzo de’ Medici Institute, I knew it was the perfect university for me. Before my arrival, I was excited to hear that LdM is known for its opportunities in fashion. Ever since high school, I have been fascinated with fashion; clothing and the way people style themselves is an art.
One of the best things about studying at Lorenzo de’ Medici is its location: the city of Florence. Florence’s location is perfect for weekend travels to different cities including Milan, the fashion capital of the world. Being the fashionista that I am, it was on my bucket list to attend Milan fashion week at some point during my life. When I realized I was going to be in Italy for spring fashion week, there was no way I was going to miss it! My first week abroad I asked my roommates and a couple of friends to come with me. They agreed and we booked the train tickets from Florence to Milan right away.
We arrived in Milan Friday, February 21st. The first thing we saw as we walked out of the metro was the magnificent Duomo. It is absolutely astounding! The view from walking up the steps was surreal. Our first day, we explored Milano, window shopped, and were amazed at the fact that every woman was wearing stilettos. The clothing style is completely different from anywhere else I have been in Italy. Every person is dressed to impress. Women are trendy and men are dapper. It is also easy to tell that the clothes that people wear are made from quality materials and stitching. The window displays are like no other. They possess only the current season’s collection, but are elegant and stylish. The color schemes, props, and mannequins are intricately designed for the pleasure of viewing and of course, buying.
By noon the next day, February 22nd, we were experiencing fashion week first hand. We were in Piazza Sempione where the Roberto Cavalli fashion show took place. There were fashionable people, photographers, and press associates waiting to see and interview the celebrities and models that walked by. This was the place to be at that point in time! As we were taking pictures of the women wearing one-of-a-kind outfits, furs, Chanel, Prada, and Louis Vuitton accessories the crowd started to get excited: Chiara Ferragni was making her way to the entrance of the fashion show.
Chiara Ferragni is my favorite fashion blogger, who happens to be Italian. She has 2 million followers on Instagram and I have been following her for over a year now. She also has a website where she writes her posts both in English and Italian. She was one of my inspirations to learn Italian and embrace my heritage. Her posts are about her travels and her adventures in the fashion industry and her style is a mix between chic, trendy, and elegant. I thought to myself, it would be amazing if I was able to meet her!
After the crowd calmed down, we heard the music from the show starting. We continued to take pictures of the fashionistas. Some people even asked to take pictures of us! About 30 minutes passed, the guests started to exit the fashion show.
When all of the guests stopped coming out, we decided it was time to go eat lunch. “I didn’t get to see Chiara on her way out!” I said. “Do you want to wait?” my friend asked me. I said no because I didn’t want to be inconsiderate to my friends. “Oh well…. Maybe next time.” I was a bit discouraged.
We started to walk away and made it to the exterior of the fashion show where there were less people. Then suddenly, Chiara Ferragni was walking directly towards me! It could not have been at a more perfect time. Is this real life? “Chiara Ferragni!” I said. She smiled and stopped. “Can I please take a photograph with you?!” I was elated. “Of course!” she said. I told her how she has been an inspiration to me. She thanked me for being so kind and following her. She was genuine!
Being able to meet my favorite fashion blogger not only topped my weekend, but made my study abroad experience in Italy complete!