FIT in Florence

FIT in Florence

October 1, 2015
by Rose

Florence: A New Home

When you move to Florence, you never really get over how beautiful your new home is and how many surprising things you can find out about it everyday. From the the very first moment you step onto the gorgeous Polimoda campus to the glimpse of the Arno you see each week while taking the tram to the Design Lab, nothing about this city is anything less than breathtaking.

View of Florence from the top of San Niccolò Tower.

View of Florence from the top of San Niccolò Tower.

As I’ve settled into my new life and school schedule here, I’ve found that I’ve become greatly accustomed to the “Italian” way of life, even though I arrived here only a month ago. I know that, when I return to the United States, I’ll miss hearing Italian spoken everywhere, the daily cappuccino breaks, and even the business hours of stores and restaurants, which I thought were strange at first but have now grown used to. Here, dinnertime doesn’t start until at least 7:00, so most restaurants don’t even open until that time, and many stores close for an hour or two for lunch! However, even though it takes a while to figure out when shops will actually be open and how visiting them can fit into your schedule, there are amazing businesses here. One place that I fell in love with was the Todo Modo cafe and bookstore, which is located at Via dei Fossi 15. This is the perfect place to get some work done or just relax with a coffee and it is really close to Polimoda.

Iced almond coffee and homework at Todo Modo.

Iced almond coffee and homework at Todo Modo.

Florence is also the perfect place for anyone who loves art because it is plentiful here and you will always be visiting museums, cathedrals, and an endless number of beautiful places. I highly recommend taking the Renaissance Art History class because, in this course, you will visit a different landmark each week and learn about the history of Italian art and architecture through actually seeing the pieces firsthand rather than through a textbook. Also, if you are a design student and have an extremely heavy workload and feel like you don’t have time to explore Florence as much as you want to, this class forces you to see the sights each week!

The Boboli Gardens at Palazzo Pitti.

The Boboli Gardens at Palazzo Pitti.

I’m sure that, as this year continues, I will keep stumbling upon hidden gems in the city and notice more spectacular things around me. Florence is an endless treasure box full of beautiful architecture, cobblestone paths, and enticing gelaterias on every corner and it is a magical place that I am happy to call home.

Florence at night.

The sunset over the Arno.

September 21, 2015
by May


I left New York City four weeks ago to study abroad in Florence, Italy, and I’ve spent the time acquainting myself with this beautiful city and its culture. While some things are easy to learn (like validating my bus ticket as soon as I get on the bus or ordering my favorite breakfast: “Croissant con la crema?”), there are a few things that I have yet to get used to. Below are four little mistakes I’ve made too often that I should stop making!

1. Not bringing a shopping bag to do groceries. The plastic bags at the supermarkets are not free in Florence like they are in NYC so if you didn’t bring your own bag, be ready to pay a few cents to buy one or hug your groceries home.


2. Saying “Dollar” instead of “Euro.” It’s a habit. 

3. Expecting the water faucet to run automatically in the bathroom sink when there’s no knob in sight. I personally had an eight-year old show me how to use these bathroom sinks; you have to press the break under the sink with your foot for the water to run.


4. Buying carbonated-water instead of regular-water.  Don’t judge! They are often placed next to each other with similar packaging.


While I make these mistakes more than I really should, I know that an easy way to avoid them is to simply slow down! :) I’m working on it! See you next time.



April 23, 2015
by Kaylee

Counting Down Days


In this outfit I was told I looked Italian, therefore documentation has to be made

To be exact, I have just 24 days left of this wild, crazy decision to move away for nine months. I remember counting down the days until I left New York, counting down the days until my Dad and brother came to visit, and now I am counting down the days until I return to New York, but with much less excitement.

After spending my spring break in Portugal, a beautiful country that shows the cracks of a struggling economy among the old buildings and tiled streets, I was happy to return to Florence again. The weather has been sunny and seventy, with blue skies and an occasional breeze. The sunsets have been incredible. I missed the Florentine food after only a week. Florence welcomed me back with open arms and I walked into them immediately.


My friend Joe, pointing out the sites to our friend from home, Sean

This past Sunday was a perfect Sunday, the kind you can’t come up with if you tried. The morning was spent at Piazzale Michelangelo in the sunshine, people watching and view watching. We meandered to Piazza Santo Spirito where a street market was taking place. We ate Gusta panino on the steps of the church after exploring the stands. In a burst of energy, we crossed the river to San Marco, and grabbed the bus to Fiesole, taking in the view of Florence from up above. It was a day that fell into a place, the kind of day you can’t plan, a Sunday that I will always remember fondly, for the company, the place, and the laughter.


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Fiesole: it was a bit chilly and gray, but the view is incredible either way!

The end of the semester projects for everyone are looming, The second year design students have their exhibition in a week and the end of the year aperitivo is right around the corner. Everyone is busy with last minute trips, procrastinated papers, and going to the restaurants we always talked about, but haven’t made it to. This weekend I think I will finally go to Pisa. Yes, I have been just a short train ride away from the leaning tower for eight months and yes, I still haven’t gone. The months move quickly, the weekends fill up, sometimes you have to save certain things until the end. I think my last few weekends here will all be like that; watching sunsets, taking afternoon trips, and finally getting aperitivo at that place nearby I’ve always walked past. It’s been a great eight months, here’s to one more amazing one.