I think I’m becoming an Italian “homebody”. By Italian standards, that doesn’t mean that I stay home all the time, but rather I don’t leave the confines of my city. I live in Modena, and lately I prefer to spend Saturday and Sunday around the city centre and close to home. Maybe this is because as a family we’re all on a strict gluten free diet, so all of a sudden “finding somewhere” to eat just became harder (not impossible though, but HARD!)
I define the Italian homebody as the person who never leaves their neighbourhood in a big city like Milan or Rome, or even the person who DREADS taking the car for more than 20 minutes to the next town over.
I kid you not, this exists! I know people in Modena, who have been to Bologna like 3 times in their ENTIRE LIVES….and Bologna is only 20 minutes away!
We are planning quite a few day trips for the following months, but generally speaking 3 out of every 4 weekends each month you’ll find me on the Via Emilia (Modena’s main street), popping into shops and hitting up my favourite spots, without ever straying too far from home. This way, when my little guy is hungry, we can quickly rush home and make a plate of gluten free pasta!
Plus, GF food is EXPENSIVE. No one prepared me for how expensive it is!! Alas, I think my summer vacations will be very close to home!
The Reason I Dressed
If you follow me on Instagram, than perhaps you saw this photo:
It was taken about two weeks ago during one of our usual Saturday strolls in the centre. I love Modena. I know, maybe I’m silly for not longing to return to Toronto or Milan or Bologna, all big, beautiful cities….but I’m just loving life in a medium city.
Life in a small city can get visually tiring, you see the same buildings, streets and people many times. But there is so much beauty here that I rarely get tired of soaking it all in.
Il Duomo di Modena
On this particular day, we did nothing special, just a walk “passeggiata”, coffee in some bar (“Bar” is actually what Italians call Cafe’s!) and a bit of window shopping. We did make it into the Duomo of Modena, which is a Unesco World Heritage site. A mass was going on and the atmosphere in there is always very awe inspiring and special.
I’m still sad that when my whole family and dear friends Adrienne and Paul came all the way from Canada to Modena for our wedding that the Duomo was mostly closed. This part of Italy had many earthquakes in 2012, the year my son was born and the year of our wedding. Only now has the Duomo finally been completely open to the public again, after undergoing restoration and reinforcement.
What I Wore
I wore my knit “U” Silhouette coat. I wrote all about what the “U” silhouette means to me and how I think it is the new flattering coat shape here! If there was ever a “momiform” (mom + uniform), this is mine. My military booties (wrote about the trend here and why Italians love them), boyfriend jeans, slouchy “U” coat and this big, black tote have been in constant rotation this season.
The one thing I get asked about the most is my bag! This was bought on sale during the June summer sales and is sadly no longer available. However, I wanted to shed light on the trend and offer a pretty good deal to get the look.
The Fold-Over Leather Tote Trend
If you follow big fashion brands than you’ve probably heard of 3.1. Phillip Lim, a designer brand that can be found in-store and online. This season the brand presented a great “31 hour” bag, available online here. This bag is large enough to hold enough stuff to help you survive 31 hours…..if you are single with no kids, living the high life. Otherwise known as 3 hours away from home with a kid!
If you want the look but can’t afford designer, here’s a great alternative:
And you know what?…NO ONE CAN TELL!! I usually never buy accessories that aren’t real leather, but I decided to break my own rule for this bag because I loved the design and size (and price!). It fits EVERYTHING; a fold up potty (not kidding), change of clothes for my son, animals, snacks, a water bottle, all of my personal belongings and even library books! Plus there is a strap, so I don’t have to hold it on my arm all the time, it can also be hung on the stroller. How’s that for a non-baby bag, baby bag!
Have a great Wednesday …. and just because this post didn’t contain enough pictures (feel the sarcasm), I’d like to leave you with a few more from our walk that day!