My husband and I will soon be traveling to Monte Carlo and Florence for a vacation. I am a stay-at-home mom and would appreciate advice on purchasing clothes, shoes and accessories for our trip that will not only look great in these fabulous cities but also work for me when I return home.

What a fabulous excuse to go shopping! The key is to aim for chic but functional. Stay with classics, like tailored khakis and blouses, printed skirts and a short trench (these may already be in your closet!), and stick to a palette of two or three colors.

Add stylish gold hoops and other accessories to jazz up your outfits, and pack metallic, strappy sandals (flats or heels) for some fancy but comfortable footwear. A tote from Coach or Kate Spade should work perfectly as a carryall both on vacation and at home.

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