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Another "dress" in Italy question!

Tampa, Florida
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Another "dress" in Italy question!

Hi all. I have read so many articles, forums, books, etc. about how to dress in Italy. And I am beyond confused now! I will be going to Italy in a week. Rome, Florence, Venice, Milan. It will be hot hot hot! I live in Florida now and know a thing or two about heat! Do Italians wear shorts during these hot times? I can't imagine anybody wearing something else in the middle of the day walking around! I plan to pack a few pairs of shorts, some nice plain colored t-shirts, some collared shirts, and a button down or two and slacks for a nice dinner. What is acceptable and where? My shorts are new, neutral colored and plain and go down to just above the knee. Do I need to wear long pants on days I expect to go into churches? Is it okay to wear shorts for a casual dinner? We won't be eating many 4 or 5 star dinners (I have slacks and button down/tie if we do), but a standard, relatively affordable place. I don't expect to just blend in with the Italians, but also do not want to insult the culture or be "too" touristy. Any and all replies would be superb! Thanks!

north carolina
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1. Re: Another "dress" in Italy question!

I applaud you for thinking about these questions - too many don't.

Italians tend to generally dress better than Americans when out in public , particularly the women. However they are accustomed to throngs of tourists around most places in the cities and they tend to lighten up a bit in the smaller towns. You do not have to worry much about this. I personally resent tourists wearing very shabby or revealing clothing in churches (or anywhere else) but it is a fact of life. Since you are sensitive to the question, I am sure you won't have to worry. By all means understand that every Italian will recognize you as an American everywhere you go, don't worry about that, it's not a crime, and we do bring money.

Just for illustration, I never wear jeans or shorts in Italy, but occasionally, rarely, I will put on a tie to please my wife. Like if it is my birthday, or hers. Not that my standards should be any kind of standards.

On another point. You have to change your T/A name. Robert J is a famous and much honored name on these forums. Many of us would consider it an affront to have it copied. I think the only reason you get away with it is that he uses Robert-J. Since you are a gentleman of refined sensitivity, I expect that you will show him that consideration.

Edited: 20 July 2014, 20:02
London, United...
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2. Re: Another "dress" in Italy question!

As you are probably aware, Italians are reknown for being fashion conscious. It is therefore important that you deliberate carefully as to what would be suitable attire when visiting their country, particularly, as you will be a representative of your own country when doing so. Having said that, the mere fact that you have asked the question, and carefully listed the clothing you will be taken, demonstrates that you are cognizant of this.

Whilst I am not sufficiently qualified to dispense sartorial advice, I think you have shown your regard for any concerns they may have, and would not worry further.

Edited: 20 July 2014, 20:03
Tampa, Florida
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3. Re: Another "dress" in Italy question!

Thanks for the replies! Is there a "rule" or "law" about dress in the Vatican? I know that there will be tons of tourists wearing all kinds of get-ups, but would a nice pair of shorts and a collared shirt or clean plain t-shirt be fine? Or is that a more "fancy" tourist attraction that should be respected more? Thanks!

PS My name is indeed Robert J. I noticed the other day that Robert-J answered a question of mine and thought, how funny! I'll change the name when I get home!

Canada
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4. Re: Another "dress" in Italy question!

First, there are very specific dress codes for the Vatican - for me pants (your knees must be covered) and a t'shirt or shirt will do (no muscle shirts!).

Second, please don't worry too much about what you are wearing when touring around, or having meals. Yes Italians dress well, but even if they have on a pair of jeans and a t-shirt, it's not what they wear it is in the "how they wear it", that is the difference.

I'm Italian, but I don't live there - no matter how hard I try I don't come out looking like they do! They are just so very well put together. So I will stress, don't worry about it.

San Francisco...
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5. Re: Another "dress" in Italy question!

You'll be fine Robert J...and if you want to check out what tourists really wear in Rome check out this 'live' video cam:

skylinewebcams.com/en/…piazza-navona.html

...and personally I think it is OK to keep your T/A name...I'm not all that bright but I know the difference between Robert J and Robert-J.

Sydney, Australia
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6. Re: Another "dress" in Italy question!

For the Vatican men need to wear long trousers and a shirt with sleeves, not shorts no matter how smart. Women need to cover knees and shoulders (and the bits in between). Occasionally people are allowed in with shorter attire but it cannot be guaranteed. There are several other churches where dress rules apply as well, from memory St mary Major Rome and the Basilica of San Marco and the Frari in Venice.

7. Re: Another "dress" in Italy question!

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