In January 2019 I studied a Media and Communications unit in Florence through the Media and Communications for the Fashion Industry program. The program was at the IED Institute of Design and the location was exceptional. It was a street away from the famous Cathedral of Santa Maria del Fiore, which is absolutely breathtaking up close and has a great view from the top. Florence isn’t a big city so it was really easy to navigate with its beautiful cobbled streets, old buildings and renaissance style.    

My time at the university was really enlightening. For example, something you should know is that Italians don’t like to take classes before 10am and usually finish around 6pm.

The contents of the work in class included writing, photography, style forecasting, history and media. The photography and styling classes were my favourite part as we got to create and be a part of a fashion shoot. This included seeing all the different functions of a camera and the actions that create a clear image, as well as the styling practices used to create the atmosphere.

These are images from my photoshoot experience and my groups' interpretation of 'Bohemian Chaos', which was the theme we had to adapt after visiting the Pitti uomo fashion week event. 

Site visits were a big part of our program, which was fantastic exposure to the Fashion industry of Europe. We went to Pitti Uomo, which is a menswear fashion convention and a platform to present new collections and projects in mens’ fashion. The atmosphere was energetic and creative. I was in absolute awe of this experience! Gucci Gardens was also just as remarkable! It’s a gallery dedicated to the iconic Italian fashion house, but it also includes interactive rooms that exhibit collaborative artists of this century, a tea room, and one-of-a-kind items for sale. We also visited artisans, craftsmen and traditional fabrication houses that are still creating patterned velvet for buyers such as Fendi, Gucci and Versace.

My favourite part of the experience was travelling and exploring Florence,  including the Ponte Vecchio bridge, which is a medieval bridge that is full of jewellers and art dealers. My favourite places were Pitti Palace and Boboli Garden. Also, a fantastic look-out was the Piazzale Michelangelo and the best pasta I tasted was from Salsamenteria De’ Ciompi. I would definitely suggest day trips or weekends to Venice, Milan, Cinque Terra or Rome, because it’s super easy to get around Europe on the train and they are no more than two hours away. 

This experience wouldn’t have been what it was without my new friends. Everyone on the course was really friendly and made an effort to interact and get to know each another. I met some amazing people who all had unique qualities. We spent a lot of time trying to talk ourselves out of eating ice cream every day (!!!!!) and overall just having some great conversations and plenty of shopping trips to vintage stores.

By Louise Hodgkins

Laura (back row from left to right), Mariana, Beth, Madi. Alfie (front row from left to right) and me.  


Keen to find out more about the program Louise participated in (Media & Communication for the Fashion Industry)? 


Have you been to Italy? What's your favourite memory there? ??

Ciao, mi chiamo Louise! I am a third year studying a Bachelor of Commerce in Marketing and Advertising at Curtin University. I have also previously studied a Fashion and Textile degree which drives my passion towards my career. I have a fond love for History, Fashion and ultimately: Adventures!