While tourist season in Italy is at its peak during the summer months, September is tried and true one of the best times to travel to the country that is on everyone's wanderlust list. Less crowds, not as humid, but the sun still glistens just as bright, and the pasta still tastes just as good. Our love affair for Italy is one that keeps on growing - and we're sharing some of the most luxurious Italian crafted items, what to pack for travel in general, and some recipes and a scent that will continue to make your trip memorable, long after you've returned home.
Italian design and craftsmanship is revered worldwide - so it's no wonder that Italian made luggage is our favorite. This year, two former fashion execs launched an affordable luggage brand called Paravel. Together, they worked exclusively with Italian mills and factories to design a zero-waste cotton canvas collection of luggage, weekend bags and more that make transitioning from traveling into wherever your destination may be a stylish endeavor. You can even have your initials monogrammed in an artful way in dozens of colors to truly make it one of a kind. The Stowaway is one of our must-haves because it fully collapses for storage when you aren't on the go, and allows you to stock up on souvenirs while away. The Week(ender) is a super room-y tote that attaches itself to any rolling bag. Another travel bag brand we love? SteamLine Luggage. These beautifully handcrafted pieces are vintage-inspired and will last for years through travel wear and tear. Impeccably chic.
1. DARK STRETCH DENIM JEANS
Dark denim is your top option because it adds polish to an outfit while other washes read casual. Jeans with stretch provide comfort when traveling and touring . J. Brand, $230.
2. STYLISH SLIP ON SHOE
You'll need a comfortable shoe for walking, and slip ons with a manageable platform add fashion to function. Opening Ceremony, $195.
The white button down shirt is an all time classic. The most versatile piece you'll ever own, this style with chic back pleating adds a little extra. Cuyana, $125.
This high collar style in chambray works double duty, pairing as well with jeans and sneakers as it does with heels and black pants. Tibi, $395.
Another tried and true basic, the black pant (but in a cropped style) works both day and night. When your travel bag need not be weighed down with tons of heavy accessories, you'll be confident in this pant that does a great job of showing off your footwear. Stella McCartney, $695.
6. SEASONLESS LBD
V-neck, long sleeved, an ideal hem: this black dress is literally transformed when paired with any kind of shoe, bag, or jewelry. The possibilities are endless. L.K. Bennet, $295.
The sturdy, chunky heel is is the right choice for long days spent out of town. It's sleek shape with no hardware makes them a perfect match to any outfit you choose. Stuart Weitzman, $535.
Now that you have your travel basics covered, here's another clever approach to take when packing smart. We talked to Daniel Vosovic (who you saw as a finalist on Project Runway) about his new collection, The Kit, which makes the most of each carefully designed piece in a genius way. The Kit is a collection of effortless separates featuring two designer-quality pieces designed to be worn together or separately. Daniel curated his favorites for Story + Rain, and shares styling recommendations with us for a trip to Italy:
"This top worn with jeans is a great way to elevate the iconic "jeans and tee" look to a slightly more stylish level that even the staunchest Italian fashionista would appreciate," says Daniel.
"The Cobie Top and Cobie Romper in Navy: worn as a full look, it offers ease and versatility in September weather, wear it as a full look or if in mid-day Mediterranean heat, slip off the top and roll it in your bag... the spandex content in the silk helps keep the wrinkles to a minimum when you need it for aperitivo later that afternoon or have to cover your shoulders while visiting the Duomo," says Daniel.
Cobie Romber, $145, by The Kit.
"I'd also recommend a bold print in an easy silhouette, specifically the Emma KIT in Teal Paint Strokes. With versatile features like no closures, stretch silk fabric, and wear it together/wear it separately styling, it makes packing a lot easier when you "might need a dressy outfit" but don't want to bring an entire look that only has one purpose," says Daniel.
Byredo makes some of the finest perfumes in the world, but did you know they come in travel size? Now, there's no reason to transfer yours into a small bottle or pack a full one. In the spirit of Italy and in a fresh lemon scent, we love Palermo. Byredo, $110.
Goop's corralled all their clean beauty favorites in travel size versions, into one easy-to-access pack. Goop, $198.
Fashionistas and jet-setters flock to Anya Hindmarch's flagship store in search of this nylon vanity pack. It's the top echelon of travel accessories because of the way it's designed (the top part neatly carries all your makeup brushes) and niche labeling in the various sections that the brand has become known for. Anya Hindmarch, $541.10.
We love a perfectly crafted scent that allows you to bring the essence of your vacation back home. Eau D'Italie was initially created for the Hotel Le Sirenuse by Marina Sersale and Sebastian Alvarez Murena, Marina's family owned the hotel. They have captured the scents of one of Positano's most charming shore side abodes turning them into vacation in a bottle: a full bath collection that allows you to take a piece of Italy home with you, long after you've departed from your dreamlike escape. In 1938, Greta Garbo disappeared from Hollywood life, retreating to Ravello on the Amalfi Coast. Rosa Greta Eau d'Italie is named after the star and her life at the time.
Eau d'Italie Liquid Soap in Pure Petals, $32; Eau D'Italie Rosa Greta Eau de Parfum, $160; Eau d'Italie Liquid Soap, $38.