One thing I love about shopping in italy is that all the stuff they sell exudes a certain style and quality. This is esspecially true with regards to leather goods and clothing.
We all know the famous high fashion brands like Gucci, prada. But what about the lesser known local brands.
These brands outside of italy tend to market themselves as high fashion expensive brands, just below gucci etc...but in italy they are just run of the mill.
For example Furla. In Amsterdam there bags are counted just below the big name brands.Selling there bags in the 100s of euro. But in italy they are just another of the many brands that sell good quality nicely designed bags.
And shops and brands like these are dime a dozen.
And with so many competition the prices they asked are really competitive.Specially during sales.
I think these brands are the best bargains. For italians they are just a name of good quality gear. But in other countries they sell them as high end items.
Examples: Bruno Magli, Fratelli Rossetti, The bridge, Furla...and many more like it.
In italy they have two sales periods.
Starting in January and the other starting in july/august. The january are the wintergear and in july august are of course the summer stuff.
These sales extend 3 months with each month meaning more discounts.
Of course some items lasts just a few days before they are snapped
The outlets also join these sales with even more and bigger bargains.
The leather goods here are of top quality. Bargin the merchants for your desired article (make sure to pay by cash). Credit cards are accepted by many of the merchants, but you will get a better deal if you pay by cash.
Fondest memory: Watching my mother touch "Il Porcellino" for a bit of good luck.
Despite its name the New Market has been around since 1551 and was known as the Straw Market because it sold rafia (straw) goods. Today this market sells everything from clothing, handbags, shoes and leather good, along with tourist souvernirs.
Fondest memory: It is thought that by touching the little bronze boar "Il Porcellino" it will bring good luck. So go ahead, touch away.
Favorite thing: This looks like a perfect setting to have you picture taken in Florence. On the Ponte Vecchio, overseeing the Arno river, or (check my second picture) in front of a gold glimmering gold jewelery store :)
Fondest memory: There are lots of shopping opportunities near the Duomo, and between it and Palazzo Vecchio. Many of these streets are pedestrian only. Here you will find stores that sell clothing, gifts, etc. and here you will also find great Italian restaurants and lots and lots of ice cream places. Florence is supposed to have the best ice cream in Italy.
Ponte Vecchio is the oldest bridge in Florence. It was built in 1345. There have always been a lot of workshops. In the past from butchers to taners, but nowdays there are mainly jewelries.
Fondest memory: It is a nice place to walk buy. On one site you can see magnificent Ponte Santa Trinita and on the other way you ca see the Uffizi.
Florence is probably my favourite of all the Italian cities I have seen, Venice comes a very close second. I just loved the place for some reason. You must check out the leather in Florence its great and a very good price. Try and go to one of the leather factory outlets which have a showroom. I bought a lovely leather coat (almost full length on me) and leather gloves at a very good price. The sleeves were too long so they took them up and had the coat delivered to the hotel later that evening. They even gold stamped my initials on the inside of the coat free of charge.
There are several of them in Florence, but I went to Peruzzi, Borgo dei Greci, 8r – Via Anguillara 5/7/9/11/13/15. Beware of leather though in the markets, a lot is not good quality and they were spraying them with something that made them smell like leather.
Fondest memory: We went up to some restaurant in the hills for dinner. It had a verandah looking down into the valley and it was just lovely up there. The river with all the bridges was just so pretty. Unfortunately I don't remember the name of it. Of course I have the jewellery and leather goods to always remind me of Florence.
look at the jewellery sold by the shops of the Ponte Vecchio.
It is beautiful and seems cheap because gold is inexpensive in Italy but you can find cheaper elsewhere in Florence.
Fondest memory: Pay attention to your bag or your purse : the pickpockets are always there.
Go to the Ponte Vecchio. What shops!!!
this is the oldest bridge across the Arno. It dates back to Roman times. After the flooding of 1333, it was reconstructed with rows of shops. In 1565 the east facing Vasariano Corridor above the shops was built. the back-shops were added in the 17th century.
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