A few days before starting my blog, although I’ve had it in mind for years!, I was hanging around in Messina (my hometown) with a friend and we were sipping a cold beer. I was telling her about my ideas and my plans for the blog when she suddenly says: “Come with me, I have the perfect place for you. You’ll meet an incredible girl!”
The place she was talking about is Maison Studio, via Garibaldi 95, Messina, a lovely shop with a vintage flare – opened not even a year earlier. Inside is where I met Lilli, the owner, a tiny girl, with big curly hair and sparkling eyes.
Lilli tells me her story or more accurately, her adventure through her studies at the Academy of Costume and Fashion in Rome, her odd jobs in Bologna but also her encompassing passion for vintage and for tailoring. Her passions can be clearly seen in her shop, where every piece is unique, hand made by Lilli and where amazing vintage objects (found in many different Italian small fairs) can be seen all around.
Lilli is overwhelming with her radiant character and with her mountain of projects and ideas….she shows me her internet site (www.meicomme.it) and we immediately find a lot of things in common. Fortunately, I had my Nikon in my bag and I had fun taking some pictures in her adorable shop!
TLC: Lilli, how did you have the brave idea of opening this kind of shop in Messina?
Lilli: I started studying fashion by chance whit a one-year training course as a designer, near Palermo. From there I decided to continue on this great experience. I attended the Academy of Costume and Fashion in Rome for four years. My degree required that I produce a fashion show and with that experience, I started working in Bologna, then Rome again. All during this time, I worked as a free-lance designer for a company in Milan.
After many years and a good amount of experience, I felt the need to express my own style without any external constriction. This need became more and more concrete every day, but the only thing that was clear in my mind was the place where I wanted to give space to my little art laboratory. I also thought, already in Rome there are many shops/ateliers, so I decided to bring some novelty and brighten up my hometown!
TLC: Where do you get inspiration for your creations?
Lilli: Inspiration is a strong emotional moment…it can happen when I travel, when I observe interesting people in town or more paradoxically while I stare at a blank page during a sleepless night! Often the right music helps me when I am in an emotional state of mind. There are no rules, it happens without giving notice!
TLC: What is vintage for you?
Lilli: Vintage is History! I am fascinated by its charm, perfume and poetry. It’s like watching a black and white movie and managing to distinguish all the shades of color. Vintage give us the chance to recycle and take from the past- adapting it to our very personal concept of the present.
TLC: In your showroom there are a lot of vintage accessories and pieces, where do you find them?
Lilli: Well, everywhere! Antiques and vintage fairs in Sicily or anywhere else. Sometimes, when I’m lucky, I manage to find some little shops from the ’50s/’60s that are going to close: one day I dangerously and shamelessly climbed to a dusty shelf just to find some old pieces…isn’t that what we call, “passion”?