The Ladybug is a storyteller: the legend of the giants Mata and Grifone

The Ladybug Chronicles Mata & Grifone (1)

A few weeks ago, while walking down the streets of Messina I stopped by the two big statues of the giants Mata and Grifone riding their horses.

The two huge statues are exposed in the central square of Messina (Piazza Unione Europea) in front of the City Hall a couple of weeks a year, usually after mid-August (after parading for a couple of days) until the end of the month, to allow tourists and citizens to take pictures of them and to celebrate the legendary founders of the city.

I have always loved their legend since I was a child because it was the celebration of an interracial and interreligious couple! They still represent to my eyes the symbol of an open town, open to migrants, strangers and whoever approaches our sea. Unfortunately this is not how the things are going lately in my town and in my country in general, that’s why I wanted to remember this story and to tell it to the world: to remind that we all come from “mixed” ancestors, we have no idea of what type of blood runs into our veins, and we should be proud of it.

The Ladybug Chronicles Mata & Grifone (4)

The Ladybug Chronicles Mata & Grifone (2)

The Ladybug Chronicles Mata & Grifone (6)

The legend says indeed that people from Messina come from this mixed couple: her name was Marta, she was from Camaro, one of the area of the city, beautiful and tall girl, daughter of a local landlord falling in love with a dark skin big pirate during the Saracen invasions of Sicily around 970 AD. The pirate was called Hassas Ibn-Hammar but he had to change his name and religion (he was of course Muslim) to marry Marta. His name then became Grifo (exaggerated to Grifone due to his size) while her name was changed in dialect to Mata. They founded then Messina by populating it with a lot of descendants!

This post and pictures are my tribute to them, to my legendary ancestors representing peace and connection between different cultures, races and religions. This is how proud I am to be from Messina.

For my yearly tribute I wore a vintage floral shirt from Humana Vintage Milano, Topshop denim shorts and Japanese white flats. Ghanaian bolga bag is from Sankofa Beads and Baskets on Etsy, while round sunglasses are from Valentino.

The Ladybug Chronicles Mata & Grifone (3)

The Ladybug Chronicles Mata & Grifone (5)

The Ladybug’s “Sweet Velveteen”

The Ladybug Chronicles Sicily Velvet (5)

That I am a huge fan of velvet is not big news right?

I can’t resist the charm of this soft fabric with such a vintage, glam and sophisticated feel. I have a few velvet pieces in my wardrobe but I couldn’t resist these two pictured here:

  • the first one is this beautiful velvet shirt, a vintage piece from Atos Lombardini that I found at Humana Vintage in Milan for a few euros during a sales session (I was super proud and happy for my bargain that day!);

The Ladybug Chronicles Sicily Velvet (7)

The Ladybug Chronicles Sicily Velvet (1)

The Ladybug Chronicles Sicily Velvet (4)

  • the second is this amazing handmade decorated headband from Madame Ilary: I still remember that I was in bed scrolling down my Instagram feeds when I saw it and immediately sent her a message telling her to consider it sold…to me! The color is so beautiful, and so are the soft fabric and the silver decorations!

I paired my “sweet velveteen” combo with checked culottes and patent ankle boots from Zara and vintage silver loop earrings.

The Ladybug Chronicles Sicily Velvet (2)

The Ladybug Chronicles Sicily Velvet (6)

The Ladybug Chronicles Sicily Velvet (3)

The Ladybug Parts the Gray Clouds with a Vintage Smile in Como

The Ladybug Chronicles - Como Rain Gear 01

I hate rain! Yes; I hate it so much… not only because my hair gets awful and I want to scream, but also because I never know how to dress… Yet I am a vintage gal and vintage always has an answer!

I want to share my almost head-to-toe vintage outfit that I wore for a vintage event in Como a couple of weeks ago in which I matched some of my favorite vintage pieces from a bit everywhere!

The Ladybug Chronicles - Como Rain Gear 02

The Ladybug Chronicles - Como Rain Gear 04

The Ladybug Chronicles - Como Rain Gear 03

The greatest piece of the outfit is my vintage grey shirt with frills on the sleeves and collar. I bought it in a beautiful vintage shop in Brooklyn called Stella Dallas. Here I paired it with a grey vintage soft leather pencil skirt from Humana Vintage in Milan (it didn’t fit properly when I bought it, but now it is perfect!) and with a short grey jacket from Imperial.

I mixed this with Max&Co leather boots, a wool turban from Asos and a wonderful patent clutch from one of my favorite vintage shops in London, Dappa Boutique.

The Ladybug Chronicles - Como Rain Gear 05

The Ladybug’s Jamboree Dress Up: Summer Jamboree Day #2

The Ladybug Chronicles - Summer Jamboree ii 2014 09

With Summer ending just a couple days ago, I really felt that I needed this post to refresh this beautiful summer that started with this amazing experience- The Summer Jamboree in Senigallia.

I only spent the first weekend there before flying to Sicily: in my last post I showed you my outfit for Saturday and today it is my last outfit… Sunday evening.

Unfortunately; Sunday wasn’t as good a sunny day, but we managed to find a way to enjoying the day by visiting Marilyn Monroe’s expo first, then going South to get some great bargains in the Southern Marche outlets (ok, I bought a Miu Miu clutch!).

The Ladybug Chronicles - Summer Jamboree ii 2014 03

The Ladybug Chronicles - Summer Jamboree ii 2014 06

The Ladybug Chronicles - Summer Jamboree ii 2014 05

But we came back to Senigallia just in time to enjoy the night, but really enjoy it! We had been around the market to meet old and new friends, but we also drank beer and danced all night long! It was really great!

And this is my second outfit: I wore a polka-dot dress that I bought in Humana Vintage in Milan, I think it is from the ’80s but it has a ’50s flare that I liked! I added the same shoes (Swedish Hasbeens) and bag (Divas Vintage) from the previous outfit, but I added something new: a beautiful handmade hairband that I got from Bebop a Hairbands, a lovely English lady who makes beautiful headbands with a ’50s inspiration. I fell in love with this one with the ’50s cars and purple dots, I thought it was the perfect moment!

The Ladybug Chronicles - Summer Jamboree ii 2014 04

The Ladybug Chronicles - Summer Jamboree ii 2014 02

The Ladybug Chronicles - Summer Jamboree ii 2014 07

Another piece that caught a lot of attention that night was this amazing pair of ’50s frames that I bought some years ago from Auntie Aviator during my first visit at Pop Up Vintage Fairs in London. I would love to meet her again when I go back to London because I really believe that she has the greatest frames in London. These are a one-of-a-kind piece of art; every time I wear these glasses people stop me to ask me where I got them (which happened during that night many times!).

By the way; I was going for a “Pin Up” touch with both outfits. Did I make the mark?  Tell me, which outfit you prefer, day one or day two?

The Ladybug Chronicles - Summer Jamboree ii 2014 08

The Ladybug Still Believes Seeing is Believing: Klimt’s Expo at Palazzo Reale, Milan

The Ladybug Chronicles - Klimt 06

One of the last things that I did before going on holiday this summer was a visit to the Klimt’s expo at Palazzo Reale in Milan. On the last day, of course!

Believe it or not, I wasn’t very excited about it. Not because I’m not a fan of Klimt… I mean it’s nothing like that – when I was at university I was one of these girls with Feltrinelli’s Van Gogh and Klimt posters on the walls (The Kiss, of course!), but my excitement was diminished because of the reviews I’d personally received- they just weren’t promising. And I must say, they were confirmed.

The Ladybug Chronicles - Klimt 04


The Ladybug Chronicles - Klimt 07

Maybe because it was the last day and the museum was full of people making it almost impossible to have a proper look, but the truth is: there wasn’t much to look at. Very few Klimt’s paintings, some reproductions and a lot of minor artists, equaled one disappointing expo.

The Ladybug Chronicles - Klimt 02

The Ladybug Chronicles - Klimt 01

But overall, it was a nice day and I had a lovely walk in a “Zara summer sales” outfit! Aptly named because I bought the shirt and the skort a few days prior at Zara during the sales. I just added this lovely pair of Topshop golden glitter flats with ankle strap (also acquired on sale via their online shop… they were 9 euros, so I guess it was a bargain- especially since I simply love them!) and a vintage handbag from Humana Vintage in Milan.

Coral lipstick from Marc by Marc Jacobs makeup at Sephora.

The Ladybug Chronicles - Klimt 03

The Ladybug Chronicles - Klimt 05

The Ladybug Shares Her “Just-For-Me” ’70s Outfit Shoot

The Ladybug Chronicles - Hard2Share70s 03

Don’t ask me why, but I found it hard to release these pictures to the public: they were “mine” and I loved them so much… maybe it was the dress, the hat or just the lovely atmosphere of the day. Some time ago KNAGUI and I walked past this street art and decided to stop for a couple of pictures, even though it was quite windy!

I’m also particularly in love with all the things that I coordinated to put this outfit together: in part because they came from some lovely trips and partly because I just love them for being really good pieces!

The Ladybug Chronicles - Hard2Share70s 01

The Ladybug Chronicles - Hard2Share70s 05

The Ladybug Chronicles - Hard2Share70s 04

First the dress: it’s a wonderful long silky vintage dress in amazing condition from the late ’70s- I consider it one of my favorite pieces ever. I got in London last year when my friends took me to Retromania, a vintage charity shop that I fell in love with for their wonderful pieces at generally affordable prices.  I love the material, the colors, the shape… everything about this dress makes me feel good!

The hat is a vintage find from Humana Vintage in Milan: it is a bit small, but I liked it so much for the color and the feathers that I decided to buy it anyway (the price was very tempting too!).

The Ladybug Chronicles - Hard2Share70s 02

The Ladybug Chronicles - Hard2Share70s 06

The Ladybug Chronicles - Hard2Share70s 07

The shoes are Jeffrey Campbell (purchased in Naples some years ago) and the lovely Chanel necklace is a find from a quaint vintage shop in Florence, Boutique Nadine, that I discovered during a beautiful walk along the Arno river, a few years ago.

[Photo Credit: KNAGUI]

The Ladybug Chronicles - Hard2Share70s 08

The Ladybug Chronicles - Hard2Share70s 09


The Ladybug’s Vintage Memories of Sicily…

The Ladybug Chronicles-6960

If you expected to find pictures of a very young Ladybug, I am sorry to disappoint you… I didn’t mean THAT vintage!

But as I decided, this year, to fully enjoy my Christmas holiday with my family and friends here in Sicily without outfits or blog posts (ok, this is not completely true… there will actually be some!), I figured I’d share one of my “Sicilian” Christmas outfits from last year.

The Ladybug Chronicles-6946

The Ladybug Chronicles-6949

The Ladybug Chronicles-6941

I am wearing one of my favorite pieces in my wardrobe: a navy and white ’80s polka dot dress with a marine collar and a beautiful red ribbon that I bought a bit more than a year ago in my beloved Humana Vintage in Milan.

It was a warm yet windy day, so I kept it simple with dark tights and a wonderful pair of black Rag and Bone Newbury ankle boots and Kiko dark red lipstick.

The Ladybug Chronicles-6945

The Ladybug Chronicles-6938

The Ladybug Chronicles-6932

Soul Sunday with KNAGUI: “What is that, Crushed Velvet?!?”

TLC-CarouselFondazioneIt’s Sunday and for me, it’s “Churchday.”

So I got dressed in these denim pants by Do Denim that I really dig a white shirt with gray stripes, my casual Pumas (that I haven’t worn in a couple years) and a Claiborne jacket (from the back of my closet that I haven’t worn even longer than my kicks), but something wasn’t quite clicking.  That’s when I pulled out this incredible buy that I got from Humana Vintage in Milano while on a shopping spree with The Ladybug last winter.Ladybug KNAGUI_2103

Ladybug KNAGUI_21032This ascot is from the Ferrovie dello Stato Italiane.  I got it for 2 Euro, I think, and it has to be the most amazing feeling silk I’ve ever worn.  I couldn’t get the line: “What is that, crushed velvet?” from the film Coming to America out of my mind.

Ladybug KNAGUI_2105I also tried the look with my brown corduroy jacket by Triple Five Soul that I got from Urban Outfitters back in 2003/2004.  I love this jacket, especially the details.

Ladybug KNAGUI_2108 Ladybug KNAGUI_2109

The Ladybug Faces the Challenge to Rock the Red Vintage Dress in Never Never Land!

TLC_0150I am sure it’s happened to you; you go shopping with a guy (your boyfriend, your brother or just a male friend) and he doesn’t like something that you want to buy that you think it is absolutely amazing!

Ladybug_0167Women usually react in two ways: they let the male’s advice win and leave the piece there or, like I do, not only buy it but also prove that they can rock the piece!

Ladybug_0159This happened to me not longtime ago while going around for shopping in Milan with KNAGUI: I decided to take him to my adored Humana Vintage mega reduced prices sale (he found a wonderful piece, but hasn’t showed it to us yet) and came upon this wonderful red dress with this lovely cream lace peter pan collar.

Ladybug_0148My heart immediately began to fly while KNAGUI’s voice from behind was pronouncing the infamous words: “You’re not getting it, right? My mom couldn’t even pull that off back in the day!” I was so completely irritated by his (unrequested!) opinion that I challenged him to buy me a dinner if I was able to rock an outfit with that dress!!

Ladybug_0153Here is to what I was challenged to: as I needed to break the “maternity mom” image, I decided to wear my new hard rock red studded ankle boots just to boost the dress!

Ladybug_0158I added red lipstick and some interesting cuffs and bracelets:  golden vintage cuff and Madewell golden and red bangles on one arm; golden and white leather cuff from thrift shop Housing Works in New York.

Ladybug_0150Do I need to say that I got that dinner?? And do I need to say what I wore for that dinner??!!

[Photo Credit: KNAGUI]

The Ladybug On How To Fall In Love In 5 Days: Corsica Day #4


I know we are already in autumn, but some days, like today, are hot enough that I feel the need to get in the car and drive to the nearest beach just to take advantage of these last days of sunshine!

But I am in Milan, I go to work every day and during the weekends the weather is as usual cloudy and sometimes rainy so… I can only seat at my computer and have a look at my pictures from this summer, especially those from Corsica!



Here is my outfit from day 4… when I was already almost completely in love with this island!

That day I visited two beautiful beaches, Boldri and Algajola and I decided to wear one of the masterpieces of my closet: the super famous Barbara Hulanicki leopard dress for Topshop from some years ago!



I had to buy it from Ebay because it was so impossible to get from their online store or in their shops: the only negative is that it is very short so that I can only use it at the beach or with some skirt/shorts underneath.

I added a retro touch with this vintage large straw hat that I bought for only 8 euros at my adored Humana Vintage in Milan.