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Vibrant Italian Outdoor Style Trends

October 20, 2009

    Southern Tuscany

After my six day stay in a hospital in Rome, I couldn’t wait to leave the city behind and head to the Italian countryside. Driving north toward southern Tuscany, as the landscape begins to change so does my mood. A sense of calm seeps in as we drive towards the medieval hill towns surrounded by Etruscan walls and Roman stones. The first town that we come to is Montepulciano, famous for its Vino Nobile. The true heart of these medieval hill towns is the main Piazza.

Montepulciano is no exception, as you walk through the Medici archway in the walls that surround the town, a long winding street filled with cafes and wine shops, climbs up to the summit of the hill where the Renaissance-style Palazzo Comunale and Duomo sit in the main square Piazza.


We arrived in town midday just when the local shop owners and business people stop what they are doing, it is Siesta time: a break in the middle of the day between 1 P.M. and 4 P.M., they go home or to a local Trattoria to be with their families and friends to eat and rest. There are many choices of places to eat, you have cafes, bars, trattorias and restaurants, all of which have outdoor seating under umbrellas or awnings. It is so lovely to see people enjoying the fresh air while dining outdoors.

Just as in Paris, the infusion of color is visible as you walk through the winding streets.

We stopped for lunch on a terrace overlooking the Valley below Montepulciano. A wrought iron pergola covered in yellow awning fabric, with green climbing vines accented the red tablecloths and blue bottled water. The colorful outdoor accents combined with the aroma of Italian food and wine permeate your soul producing a sensation of euphoria.

It is becoming obvious to me that the vibrant Italian outdoor style trends would add a great deal to some of the conventional American conservative outdoor color palettes. Outdoor living is meant to produce an appreciation of life, so might I suggest adding some vitality to your outdoor vignettes.

Stay tuned for more travels, style and trends in my next blog entry.

These are my outside views…Marcia Blake