The Ladybug enters the enchanted world of Antonio Marras (Nulla Dies Sine Linea)

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I started 2017 with great “firsts”: the first movie of the year (Collateral Beauty), the first book of the year (Rodolfo Walsh stories), the first shopping of the year (a beautiful and warm jacket for half of its price). So was my first exhibit of the year: Antonio Marras’ Nulla Dies Sine Linea at the Triennale in Milan.

I visited the exhibit at the beginning of January, on a cold Saturday afternoon and I loved it since I came in, passing through a series of hanged white shirts and black jackets with attached bells  as so wanted the artist.

The artist is Antonio Marras, one of my favorite designers ever, whose fashion showroom and artistic space (Spazio Marras) is one of my favorite corners in Milan (I visited it recently for the wonderful Malick Sidibé photography exhibition). I have always loved his fashion and I have always considered him as one of the most innovative and creative talents in Italy. I have been following him since he was an “emerging designer” because I was stunned by his fashion art and I have been loving him since then.

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I wasn’t surprised to find out that he was also an incredible artist. Nulla Dies sine Linea is a tribute to his life and career but also to the artist more than the designer. Fashion is everywhere but the exhibit is a totalizing journey into his world. From paintings to sculptures and installations, the atmosphere is relaxed, the lights are soft, the music delicately brings the visitor inside Marras’ world. There is no filter and the personal reaction is crucial. There is life and death, light and mystery, sex and fashion. Old doors and furniture often surround the installations and when you cross them you have the incredible feeling of entering something private, enveloping and fascinating, involving all of your senses.

I adored this touching journey and I fell in love with Antonio Marras even more as I discovered a lot more about his art and I was captivated by its amazingness.

I wore a Blauer green parka, Acne Studios black skinny jeans and Replay biker boots.

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The Ladybug’s beauty tips: How to fix broken powder makeup

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On my way back from my last trip I made the same mistake again: I put my makeup bag in my suitcase instead of safely putting in my handbag. Results: when I arrived at home I realized that my Marc Jacobs contouring set and my Kiko favorite blush were completely broken!

I blamed myself (again) for this stupid mistake and I promised myself (again) that I won’t ever do that again in the future!

When I was getting ready to throw them away and to buy new ones I received a very good news from my friend (and incredible makeup expert) Carmen:  “Don’t throw them” she said “Don’t you know that you can easily fix all the broken compact powders like eyeshadow, blush, bronzers, etc.?” Well, I didn’t.

She showed me how to do it and I was totally amazed with the results. I thought that I should spread the word so I decided to create a tutorial to show you how to do it very easily and quickly (just 5 steps).

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Step 1: If your powder is not completely broken, well, break it! You must start with a very fragmented piece to get the best results.

Step 2: Pour in some rubbing alcohol (start with small amounts ) until it’s absorbed and mix it with a stick or with your finger until it looks like a paste (see pictures above).

Step 3: Flatten it out with a spatula or something similar to get a flat surface.

Step 4: Leave it overnight until the alcohol evaporates completely. Your makeup powder is as new and you won’t need to buy a new one! It doesn’t look as beautiful as it was when you bought it but the results on your face will be exactly the same!

I hope it was useful and you will keep spreading the word!

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The Ladybug stays warm and cozy in this freezing weather

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It is too cold these days to take pictures outside! I must confess that I go around covered head to toe with multiple layers and I don’t feel fashionable at all!! I really hate winter when it’s so cold…I’m constantly freezing, I cannot run and I just dress to be warm!

When I read comments and articles on how to stay warm and fashionable in winter I really think that it is not for me…and what about bare legs in winter? I could NEVER EVER do that!! Warm and cozy sweaters are my uniform right now, even at work! I’m a girl from the South after all!

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While waiting for the temperature to get higher again I took advantage of my friend’s house (and beautiful cat…he really wanted to be part of it and he was obsessed with my shoes!) to take some pictures while staying warm at home with my cozy green sweater from & Other Stories that I paired it with thrifted camel culottes from Topshop (they were longer but I cut them knee-lenght) and my new ankle boots from Carmens. It is the first time that I try their shoes and I fell in love with them: lovely 70’s shapes, warm colors, incredibly comfortable and fair prices.

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The Ladybug vintage shopping in Ljubljana

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What do you know about Ljubljana?

Personally I could barely point it on a map when I was invited by a friend to spend a weekend there with her! She told me that the city center was lovely and that the view from the Castle on top of the hill was worth the trip and then she told me that I would love it because of the tons of beautiful vintage shops .

Vintage shops? In Ljubljana? I was speechless!

I was even more speechless when I arrived there: the town was lovely and the visit to the Castle was worth the trip (especially the tasty lunch at the Castle restaurant on top of the hill!). Even if it was snowy and cold, the lovely bars and shops along the river and the atmosphere of the little streets in the city center were awesome and I was seriously amazed about the amount of interesting vintage addresses in town!

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I made a quick research before traveling there and my friend was absolutely right! So if you are planning a trip to Ljubljana (better in summer but winter is ok too!) here is my list of vintage shops to visit (and the prices are incredibly affordable):

–          Vintage Divas: definitely my favorite vintage shop in Ljubljana! The shop itself is beautiful and the antiques furniture makes it look like a castle interior. I found there the best selection of vintage clothing and accessories in town, but I can definitely put it in my top ten list of vintage shops in Europe! There is a lot of research and taste and the pieces are incredibly rare although they’re not pricy at all. I spent a couple of hours looking for rare gems and I got lost in their huge collection of vintage clothing and accessories!

–          Moje Tvoje: it is a vintage and thrift/second hand store in the main street of Ljubljana and you can find there thrifted and vintage clothes for very good prices. Look for their 80’s dresses: they have a huge amount of incredible dresses from that decade! When I was there I found a special “50% off discount” and it was possible to buy a dress for 10 euros!

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–          Vintage Galerija: definitely one of the top vintage shops of Lubljana! It is situated in a small street of the old city in a lovely location and it is quite small but full of vintage gems (especially from the 40’s and the 50’s). Clothes, bags and jewelry form my favorite eras…I couldn’t help spending hours inside this tiny shop to find my perfect match: a beautiful 50’s raffia bag that is still one of my favorite vintage objects ever!

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–          Gvant: if you are not scared of getting out of the city center for a trip to this second hand store you won’t be disappointed! Not only you will discover new areas were only locals go (the area is not interesting at all, but it’s still an experience!) but you will be surprised to find this huge second hand shop with a special corner for vintage items (especially 80’s dresses and huge jumpers) for less than 10 euros. It will be impossible to go back home without a bag full of vintage and second hand bargains!

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The Ladybug goes 40’s for NYE

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Hello there! I was wondering how many of you just came back home from your first day at work after the long Christmas holidays?

Well, I did and I thought that I needed a last glimpse of Christmas before dismissing the idea of lovely winter holidays with family and friends until next year! So please forgive me if you can see Christmas trees and holiday outfits…I promise that this is my last one!

I love spending New Year’s Eve at home with my family and my closest friends, that’s why I decided for a festive outfit that I can still wear for a night out in Milan with a retro touch!

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I wore for the first time this beautiful retro inspired thrifted black overall from Max&Co with large trousers and deep V-neck with a wonderful 40’s inspired velvet turban by Madame Ilary. I really couldn’t resist to pair them for this outfit as I thought that they were just perfect together!

Shoes are grey heeled ankle boots from Liu-Jo (oldies), lipstick is my favorite NARS’ Mysterious Red!

What do you think?

Happy Monday girls…and stay retro, always!

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The Ladybug’s silver Christmas

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About two months ago I bought at Zara silver culottes: it was one of these days when you are JUST walking down the streets of Milan full of shops and sparkling windows; you JUST have half an hour before meeting your friends to go to the cinema and you are JUST outside Zara and you think that “well, I can go JUST for a short tour, I won’t buy anything”; 30 minutes later you JUST find yourself late, your friends are calling you to know where you are and you are JUST queuing to pay your item!

It happened exactly like that when I bought them: the fact that I spent 30 minutes in the shop was due to the fact that I was not sure about how to wear them and when; but they were lovely and cheap and I couldn’t resist!

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Indeed it also took a while to wear them as I’m doing almost two months later and for my Christmas Eve dinner! Anyway I decided that the best way to wear them was inspired to me by Alexa Chung who used to wear golden and silver midi skirts with knitted sweaters to make them less “serious” and more “easygoing”.  This is why I decided to pair them with my new COS pale blue oversize sweater with big bow on the back.

I wanted to wear them with flat boots but I didn’t have any with me during the holiday season and it was still Christmas eve so I could wear a pair of Liu-Jo heeled taupe ankle boots.

Nars “Mysterious Red”  on my lips was a “must”!

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The Ladybug’s big dream: Basquiat exhibit in Milan

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Six years ago one of the biggest European exhibits on Jean-Michel Basquiat opened in Paris, at the Museum of Modern Art. I was seriously thinking of getting a ticket to Paris just to see it but although my huge love and admiration for this incredible American artist, I never managed to see his art live. The first time that I saw a few of his paintings I was at Miart in Milan in 2013 but that’s nothing compared to the huge exhibit started at Mudec Museum this October and showing more than 100 works (from private collections) of the short but intense career of this amazing artist who died in 1988 at 27.

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He has been defined a writer, a graffiti artist, the symbol of the new African diaspora and a son of the African slavery but what I have always loved of Jean-Michel Basquiat powerful art is the way he put together his African roots and the energy of NYC suburbs. These two sides of his art are a huge part of this beautiful exhibit that will be in Milan until the end of February 2017 and I am thinking of going back to see it again before it ends.

The exhibit also shows his art as a bridge between different cultures and it is probably one of the biggest occasions to see Basquiat’s art in Europe or at least in Italy and I must say that it is absolutely worth the visit.

For the exhibit I wore a beige Please sweater, Topshop boyfriend jeans and Max&Co navy coat. I also wore my new clogs from Archivio Vintage and my new Bonne Maison colored socks with my Cavalli e Nastri vintage 70’s handbag.

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The Ladybug goes to school with Smashbox at Limoni Beauty Lounge

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If you could rate yourself for your makeup, what would it be? Are there things that you really cannot do or things that you would learn to do better?

Personally I’d give myself a 6: I patiently learned to do many things but there are many I am still awful at: putting eye-liner (cat-eye is definitely the worst thing for me!), eye-shadow and lip pencil; there are also things that I’d love to fine-tune: eyebrows, foundation and contouring!

The good news is that now there is a school for that! At the newly opened Limoni Beauty Lounge in via Fratelli Castiglioni in Milan you can learn the best makeup tips and create your customized makeup with a beauty expert from Smashbox cosmetics.

We organized a small group with my friends and for only 10 euros each we had an hour full of makeup hints, and a real school to create yourself your own makeup based on your tones and skin.

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I incredibly created perfect cat-eye with the eye-liner, I learned how to create hyper voluminous eyelashes (using also the eyelash primer) and how to use foundation and blush correctly.

I also discovered Smashbox Cosmetics, the cruelty-free American makeup that I fell in love with; btw at the Limoni Beauty School you can use your 10 euros registration fee as a reduction for the products that you tested…isn’t it a great news?!

Can you see the results? What do you think?

I’m wearing Please wool sweater, Topshop culottes, Benetton boots and old Alexa Chung for Made.com skull necklace (and Smashbox makeup of course!)

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The Ladybug’s chronicle of a fairy tale: Malick Sidibé “Portraits” at Spazio Marras

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A couple of weeks ago I lived a real fairy tale for about one hour of my life.

I read about Malick Sidibé exhibit “Portraits” at the Antonio Marras showroom in Milan and I decided that it was the great occasion to visit the space and the photography exhibit at the same time. “Nonostante Marras” is placed in a lovely court full of green (with some yellow and brown as it was end of the Autumn – which made it even more suggestive!) and it is one of the most incredible places I’ve ever seen. I have been loving Antonio Marras’ fashion art since I was a student but this talented man never stops surprising me. Everything in this space was just amazing: the clothes, the accessories (I fell in love with his turbans!), the jewels, the furniture, the books…I just felt like a kid in Disneyland! I couldn’t stop staring at everything and I understood why this modern loft with a retro twist was indeed the perfect location for Malick Sidibé’s photographs.

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On a vintage wall about thirty black and white photographs were hanging, near vintage sofas and couches, some of the portraits taken in the 70’s by this incredible Malian artist in his studio in Bamako.

Sidibé died in April this year but he told the story of his people through his amazing art, even if he didn’t like to be called an artist: he was “just” a photographer, he used to say!

The portraits exposed are simple yet very powerful and they all tell a story about these people’s life, relationships, tastes, that you try to guess with your imagination : it’s so incredibly inspiring!

For the day I wore a vintage Rolling Stones tee (from a charity shop in London), Acne Studios jeans, Zara boots and my new favorite long camel coat from Diffusione Tessile.

I added a wax headband from Sine Modus and a vintage tapestry doctor bag from Humana Vintage.

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The Ladybug pays tribute to Imany, Imany style!

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I can remember the day I discovered Imany’s music and style on YouTube.

I read about her in a magazine, about her story and her music. I was so curious that I decided to look for her on YouTube: well, it was love at first sight! It started with “You will never know” and it continued with “Take care” and “The Shape of a Broken Heart”. But it was not only her music that I fell in love with, but also with her style: very simple, effortlessly easy and with an African touch that I adored (wax turbans, headbands and skirts that I found absolutely perfect!)

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When I knew about her being in concert in Milan at the Alcatraz I immediately asked around to find someone to go with me and I found my friend Sabrina who -at my biggest surprise- also is a fan of Imany. We really liked her live: great voice, wonderful songs from her new album (“The Wrong Kind of War”) and from her old one (“The Shape of a Broken Heart”), incredible covers and beautiful stories for two hours.

If we talk about style I adored her wax bomber (I found out later that it was from Xuly.Bet) and I decided that I need one too! By the way, we paid tribute to Imany that night and we wore our wax turbans from Madame Ilary!

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