Sophisticated, glamorous and timeless: Via Montenapoleone is ranked very highly but the true diva of the Fashion District is Via della Spiga, known for the eclectic style of each individual shop. In the 19th century Via della Spiga was inhabited by artisan ateliers and traders’ stores. Over the years it became an advocate of the Milanese avant-garde, from the Scapigliatura artists to the Risorgimento intellectuals. During the 1950s, art galleries and the first prêt-à-porter fashion shops began to co-exist alongside the artisan ateliers. Always one step ahead of the game, the first boutique, Cose, was opened in via della Spiga in 1963: a highly unique shop selling extravagant clothes.
From that moment onwards designers started to identify Via della Spiga as the place where to experiment the nascent ready-to-wear fashion. The first big brand names began to take classy and confident steps into the street. Discretion has always been the trademark of this sheltered and quiet pedestrian thoroughfare a stone's throw from the bustle of the city.
Despite the increasingly fashionable nature of Via della Spiga, the small artisans’ and traders’ shops continue to co-exist and thrive such as the greengrocer Giuseppe Garibaldi, nicknamed for his red beard, the wine store, the stationery and button shops and the boutique crafting custom-made gloves