Leslie Conner Temple Rome

A Little Advice

With only two weeks of Temple Rome Spring 2013 left, I’ve decided to start offering up some of the wisdom I’ve acquired. If you’re reading this as a future study abroadee, I hope these next few posts help out! This week, we’ll cover the most daunting topic of all: what to wear.

You might be feeling overwhelmed!

I spent so much time stressing out over what to wear while living in Rome. If I had a euro for every time someone said, “Oh, you can’t wear ______ in Rome”, I would have had enough money to buy an entire new wardrobe.

Sneakers, leggings, t-shirts, distressed clothing, hoodies. If you mentioned any of these, someone would immediately shoot them down as “un-roman” or too American.  My best piece of advice when it comes to packing clothing is: IGNORE THOSE PEOPLE COMPLETELY. Wear whatever you like to wear and do it confidently. Rome is not a homogeneous society of clones… You will see a hundred different styles that reflect the thousands of different personalities you’ll experience while abroad. Would I walk around in sweatpants, an oversized hoodie, and flip-flops at the same time? No… but I wouldn’t do that anywhere besides my own house regardless of what country I’m in. But if you dig that look, by all means go for it. (Please don’t)

Major Myths, Clothing Edition:



Sneakers are the most worn shoes in Italy. I wore my converse pretty much everyday and I was not alone. I’ve seen more girls (and guys) with my same white converse in Europe than I did back home in Philadelphia! If you love sneakers you will have a field day looking at the killer pairs people rock over here- and that you’ll have a chance to buy! I even bought my first pair of pumped up kicks in Rome! Heels + sneakers = gold.


If I didn’t have my chucks on, I wore heeled black boots. These were my go-to shoes for pubs and clubs all over Europe and are featured in most of the photos below. The heel should be thick enough to handle the many streets of cobblestone you’ll be traipsing along. Wedges are a great bet, too! Not everyone wears heels so if you’re not usually one to add extra inches, you’ll be fine in flats. I still support the investment of a killer pair of ankle boots though.

Uggs are really popular over here as well, but mostly with young girls. I left mine at home and never regretted it. If you’re super attached to yours, pack ‘em. Boots in general are very popular, but don’t buy into the idea that you’ll be the only person not rocking riding boots.

Only Americans wear leggings:

Granted, this was a holiday.

Uh, yeah okay. Leggings are everywhere. Yes, if you wear a sheer pair of leggings that expose your zebra thong, people will gawk at you. But that’s going to happen in the US, too. Leggings and tunics or dresses are everywhere over here. Let me clarify though: leggings and tights are two different things. Don’t be a victim of ignorance.



I would suggest bringing a scarf if you’re really interested in trying to fit in flawlessly; it is the one consistent staple of Roman style.


Leather jackets are huge as well; any kind of trendy jacket is actually. If you don’t have one, you will by the end of the semester. No one can resist buying leather in Florence.

The shopping is fantastic by the way. Plan on leaving room in your suitcase to bring new clothing back, or else plan on having a whole lot of self-control.

Photo on 1-17-13 at 7.59 PM
I like black and she likes colors, both work!

Wear what makes you feel comfortable and confident. You’re going to be over here for four months- that’s a long time to feel awkward if you aren’t dressing like yourself. Don’t stress about what to pack when it comes to clothing. I packed my favorite things and easily found those I overlooked! Luckily, I’ve been snapping selfies and candids of what we’ve been wearing these last four months.

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