Everything you need to know about the Milan Fashion Scene

Everything you need to know about the Milan Fashion Scene

Are you planning a trip to Milan? Excited about the Milan Fashion Week? Are you interested in fashion? Interested in learning new things? Well, if you check yes to one or more questions from above, this is the article you need. Today, we discuss the Milan Fashion scene, with the origins, the dos and don’ts, and the faux pas.

(Almost) Everything you need to know about the Milan Fashion Scene!


Paris, London, NY, Milan!

If you know anything about Milan and/or fashion, you know that it is internationally recognized as one of the four major hubs of fashion along with Paris, London, and New York. Milan has an established history in areas related to fashion, textiles, and design in general. Throughout the 20th century, the city expanded its role as a fashion center, with a number of rising designers contributing to Milan’s image as a stylistic capital. In the 1960s Milan emerged as one of the world’s pre-eminent trendsetters, maintaining this stint well into the 1990s and 2000s when the city saw a few bumps due to various reasons. As of 2018, Milan is especially renowned for its role within the prêt-à-porter category of fashion.

Everything you need to know about the Milan Fashion Scene

The Rise:

Rise of the Milan fashion scene happened because of Florence

Till the 1960s, Florence was the fashion capital of Italy- the home of the Italian “Alta Moda” (equivalent to the French “haute couture”).

By 1970s though, Milan’s fashion image became more glamorous. Moreover, the Florentine designs were usually very formal and expensive which gave Milan the final push in becoming a more popular shopping destination. In no time, there were numerous boutiques which sold both elegant and everyday clothes and then rose the famous Milan Fashion Streets. Furthermore, Milanese designs gained fame for their practicality and simple elegance. This made them more popular and affordable than Florentine and Parisian designs.


The Inspirations:

‘Milanese’ Fashion is inspired by the French

Although the populous of Milan was fashion conscious since the late 19th century, their style sensibilities were largely inspired by the Parisian (French) fashion scene. It is obvious since Paris was the place of fashion influence at the time. The Milanese fashion, however, reinvented itself by adapting to the local taste and eventually rising to individual prominence.

The commonalities can also be seen in the emphasis on savior-faire and attention to details. Although, today, the clear distinction in style and emphasis can be seen more clearly.


Everything you need to know about the Milan Fashion Scene

The Celebrated:

It is not about the Trends but the Style

The Milan Fashion Scene today is an exaggeration of the fact of this quote!

Originally, the styling interests here were reflected by the people who were ready to follow trends. That along with fashion magazines, etc. However, it was still relatively traditional and formal. As the international scene became more contemporary, the Milanese style deflected the trend and stuck its guns to the timeless fashion. Of course, this doesn’t go on to celebrate how it is being reinvented in the contemporary times.


Milan = Prêt-à-Porter fashion

In 1881, the city tailors and seamstresses amounted to 249. Rising to 383 (listed) in 1886 and increased exponentially hereafter. The Fashion industry made Milan one of the biggest industrial powerhouses in Italy. More importantly, rather than large companies, the fashion economy was mainly based on small workshops (highlighted in an 1881 census). The importance of this industry continued in the city into the early 20th century. Then, 42,711 out of 175,871 workers were in the clothing sector in 1911.

Owing to the long experience, interest, and craftsmanship of these workshops, in the contemporary world, Milan is synonymous with the prêt-à-porter category of fashion

Everything you need to know about the Milan Fashion Scene

The Faux Pas:

Being ‘Casual’ is just a faux pas!

Maybe it is the fashion legacy of the city or the present style requirements that even today a conventionally ‘casual’ dress code is simply a fashion faux pas in Milan. Loose Jeans, Clunky Sports Shoes, sweat suits or just visibly cheap clothing is what you must stay away from. The street fashion of Milan is pretty aesthetic even with the number of diverse tourists. People aren’t snobbish about style choices but are usually subtly fashionable at all times. I think, it all just comes down to making a little effort!


Major Shopping Streets:

Piazza del Duomo (with the Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II)

Quadrilatero della Moda (including Via Montenapoleone, Via della Spiga, Corso Venezia and Via Manzoni)

Via Dante

Corso Buenos Aires: one of the biggest shopping streets in Europe.

Piazza San Babila

Corso Vittorio Emanuele II

Milan Shopping Streets

(picture via wiki)


So, that’s about my compilation on everything you need to know about the Milan fashion Scene. What do you think? Can you think of something else? Tell me your thoughts and views in comments below.


For more of my travel in style adventures, keep following ERTSY. Till then, stay ERTSY! x

Aditi Parashar
"We rise when we lift others"~ 26; Traveling in Style | PositiveVibes | Feminist |

6 thoughts on “Everything you need to know about the Milan Fashion Scene

  1. Such interesting facts. Love the research and editing which has kept the text detailed without being over lengthy. Well done and love the shots. Milan magic always

  2. Love the interesting history behind Milan becoming the fashion capital! Cant wait to visit this city and shop from these fashionable streets!

  3. Honest information. And easy to follow will be definitely taking what you suggest into account when I visit in the spring

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