In between an elegant showcase and a sellout invasion, it’s easy for small boutiques to pass unnoticed. This is the case of Abside, a boutique well-hidden near the Statale University and perfect for anyone who wants to escape mass fashion.
Walk along via Festa del Perdono, next to the University, and you’ll get to a narrow street, Largo Francesco Richini.
This street will lead you to Piazza San Nazzaro in Brolo, where you’ll find the homonymous church and the shop Abside.
Abside showcase is small and well looked after. Upon opening the door, you’ll enter a simple and carefully decorated space, where you will immediately notice the clothes stowed neatly on the crutches, the accessories tied up on a table and the books lined up on a shelf.
Alessandro and Barbara, the owners, take turns behind the counter.
Theirs is one of those happy endings stories. Alessandro was a researcher biologist, while Barbara worked at the Italian newspaper Sole 24 Ore. They met, fell in love and moved to New York for a while.
When they came back to Italy, they decided to turn their lives upside down, taking sewing and entrepreneurial lessons.
A few years later, they opened Abside and filled it with their creations and those of other Italian and foreign emerging artists. Artisans who sell their clothes and accessories at Abside have only one simple rule to follow: “rejecting any canon and modelling fabrics and materials in harmony with the wearer’s body”, as Alessandro and Barbara explain on the website.
Among the many brands, there is also Lavgon, the sewing workshop that produces clothes with refined fabrics like linen, hemp and bamboo; and Laos, which uses waste materials.
The clothes and the accessories are extremely original, both in the colors and in the shapes: there are asymmetrical skirts, coats with eccentric patterns and shoppers with stripes and dots. Prices are pretty accessible, from the 10-15€ of bracelets to the 150€ of the coats.
We have mentioned books resting on shelves: in fact, Abside has managed to save abandoned books, both in Italian and in their original languages, from basements and attics and it is now selling them.
Last but not least, we owe you an explanation about the meaning of the word: “abside” in Italian means “apse” and, in fact, the shop is pretty close to the San Nazzaro church; moreover Abside is the acronym of Alessandro and Barbara!
Official website: www.ab-side.it