Now I’m not for a second ignoring the fact that Rome is chockas full of culcha (and anyone who’s seen the Australian classic film “The Castle” will recognize that reference). However a good way to get to know a city is through its local shops and designers (or is that just my way of justifying being basic as f*©k? Either way, I’m owning it).
Following extensive research I bring to you my top tips for Rome shopping – a little light relief following extensive cultural activities if that’s your bag.
Most of Rome’s shopping lies on and around Via del Corso, in particular Via Frattina, Via Borgognona and Via dei Condotti. I suggest you start on these vias. However search further afield and you shall find little shopping gems that will make your visit to Rome all the more special.
Degli Effeti is where your designer dreams will come true. Its slick charcoal interior hosts a meticulously curated selection of homegrown and international designers that will inspire entire new looks for you (which may or may not involve sequins).
Degli Effeti: Piazza Capranica 93
A must-visit for vintage delights is Coup de Théâtre. Entering this shop is like walking into some eccentric lady’s bedroom. The antique wardrobe is stuffed full of sequinned and bejewelled evening gowns, while the over-stuffed pink velour arm chair is strewn with lace, mesh and tulle. A vintage-lover’s dream.
My personal favourite for true vintage treasure is Ciao Vintage by Antichita Carnovale. In this Aladdin’s lair of luxe you’ll find the finest vintage bags, accessories and jewels, from the Chanel 2.55 of your dreams to a rare Roberta di Camerino.
Coup de Theatre: Via del Pellegrino, 17
Ciao Vintage: Via del Governo Vecchio, 71
For beautifully made shoes with a difference, Michele di Loco is your man. The designs are totally unique and a bit bonkers. I’m still dreaming of the sparkly spliced lime coloured heels that sadly had sold out of my size… Fortunately the shop is located a few doors own from one of the best purveyors of gelati in Rome, Ciampini Lab. If you can’t treat yourself, console yourself.
Michele di Loco: Via del Leone, 7
I was drawn into the Liviana Conti store by the divinely whimsical mohair knits in the window. Inside I found a constellation of Italian classic basic pieces from which you can build your Italian sophisticate wardrobe. I bought the most beautifully made black bodysuit that goes with everything here. It’s impossible to ignore the knitwear here though.
Liviana Conti: Via Frattina, 124/125
Old School Italian Craftmanship
What attracted me to Gloves Alberta was its old school 1950s style exterior. Its interior probably hasn’t been updated since around then either. Fortunately, its craftsmanship and quality has remained as high as it was since its beginnings. This charming store sells classic hats, scarves and gloves, all made in the family-run factory in Naples. I snapped up a pair of elbow-length cashmere-lined leather gloves for a bargain compared to what you might pay in a designer store for gloves of inferior quality. Check out Gloves Alberta in person – but also check out their website, it’s possibly the most charming example of e-commerce you’ll see for a while.
Gloves Alberta: Corso Vittorio Emanuele II, 18
If you don’t want to feel inspired to re-decorate your entire home, then avoid Society Limonta. It has the most exquisitely-made bed, bath and table linens and accessories in luxe colours, dreamy designs and quality textiles. Worth a visit if only for a bit of interior inspo.
Society Limonta: Piazza di Pasquino, 4
When you’re in one of the most sexy cities in the world, you simply have to pop in to Zou Zou, a divinely decadent, cabaret style treasure trove of the sexiest lingerie and outrageous accessories. When in Rome…
Zou Zou: Vicolo della Cancelleria 9a