The Ladybug Goes Americana at The Vintage Roots Festival in Inzago

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It’s somewhat strange to think that one of the most famous Americana festivals outside of the U.S. is in Italy; moreover, that it’s held just a few kilometers away from Milan. It was the 6th edition, but this year I decided to splash my way on a rainy Sunday to experience my first Vintage Roots Festival in Inzago.

To be honest, I really can’t believe it took me so long to finally visit, seeing I’m such a fanatic of the ’50s, but this year I finally made it and I realized why people love it so much. First of all; the atmosphere is retro charged- you breathe rock’n’roll at every corner of the city center! It is hard to create this kind of ambiance, but I think that these few days of music, dancing and entertainment are really among the best I have ever attended in Italy.

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And they really do their best with amazing music sets and live concerts, a real pinup contest, vintage cars and motorbikes, dancing nights and dancing classes (rockabilly, jive and boogie woogie), live shows and a lovely market where you can re-live ’30s, ’40s and ’50s America.

You can also find people like the lovely Chiara, the make-up artist and hairstylist behind Chicas Locas, who will make sure you get a perfect vintage style… like I did! I had my hair done by her and I loved the waves so much. I also added a red orchid that I bought on Ebay longtime ago!

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I wore an ’80s does ’50s polka dot dress that I bought in an incredible second hand/thrift store in Ljubljana called Gvant: this was one of my best finds at the time. This shop, though really complicated to find and quite far from the city center, was amazing.  I found many interesting pieces there at ridiculous prices! One of my great finds was this beautiful dress (I paid about 15 euros for) that was kinda made for me!

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I am also wearing my beautiful navy bag from Un Altro Giro di Giostra, an amazing vintage shop in Reggio Emilia, and a vintage belt.

Last but not least, it was the first appearance for my newly purchased Swedish Hasbeens, which just landed in Italy from their pop-up store in London! They are incredibly comfy and stylish I can’t take them off my feet!!

Oh… and she is my girl crush of the day!

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The Ladybug at Milan Design Week 2014, pt. 3: Retro Ville by Voodoo de Luxe

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On the same Sunday, last day of the Milan Design Week, I left the Vintage Week event for the Ripamonti area where Voodoo de Luxe organized an event as part of the Fuorisalone, Retro Ville.

It was announced as THE vintage event of the Design Week and, let me tell you… it was!!!

From the moment we walked in we were immediately immersed in an effortlessly cool, relaxed, rockabilly ambiance where we immediately felt at home: we enjoyed the stay, sipping a drink while talking and admiring the most well dressed women and men in Milan! Because this was the place for the real vintage people: those who live vintage and who feel it like a lifestyle and credo, I was transfixed.  I couldn’t take my eyes off the beautiful pin ups with perfect hair and make-up (I still wish that one day I’ll be able to do that myself!) and the sexy men in their perfectly tailored 1950’s suits and scented beards!

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But I found out their secret: our friends from Bullfrog Milano were there in a vintage recreation of their beautiful Salon in Milan! It was great to see them and again, I spent a lot of time staring at them shaping beards and giving haircuts!

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Many new stallers and art makers were present (like my lovely friend Laura from Oggetti Smarriti with my favorite frames!) and I was delighted in discovering new retro and vintage dealers that I have never met before!  My winter curves made me postpone buying a bit, but I have a mental list of all the things that I need to pick up on after my Nike+ Training Club concludes!! My first shopping will be at Bloody Edith, but my second will probably be at The Black Pinafore (they make amazing reproductions of 1940’s and 50’s clothing)… not to mention Oldress, a newly established shop in Milan (in “my” area!), that I still need to give a proper visit.

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I also loved the location: it was full of vintage home-ware, furniture and all the Milano Art Makers spaces that I enjoyed so much, and of course, the green area in the middle with a little bar to enjoy the beautiful sunny day!

It was a very cool and interesting Design Week weekend… can’t wait for next year where I’m hoping to enjoy even more vintage events!

PS: if you are in Milan, follow Voodoo de Luxe: they also organize a lovely vintage market every month. We’ll talk about it soon!

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The Ladybug Accepts the Call of Summer Jamboree 2013: Senigallia By Night

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For those of you who never heard about the Summer Jamboree, it is definitely the most important, famous and amazing Italian Festival of the American culture and music of the 1940s and ’50s. It started 13 years ago and year by year it attracts people from all over the world, all ages and cultures in a beautiful festive atmosphere which I enjoyed during that weekend.  Ten days of music, costumes, clothes, accessories from the ’50s… you almost have the feeling of living during that era.

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I was surprised by the massive amount of people walking around the streets of Senigallia on Saturday night, moving from a stage to another places in some of the central squares of the village to listen to the best Italian and International Americana artists, or dancing rock ‘n’ roll or just shopping vintage and retro clothing in the many stalls all along the lovely streets of the town. From neophytes to aficionados, everybody tried to honor the Festival by wearing something ’40s/’50s, rockabilly style! I was completely amazed by the crazy quantity of events, concerts, parties: Hawaiian inspired parties, Burlesque classes, vintage car expo and even a Johnny Cash expo!

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During the day, the beaches are full of adorable pin-ups in their ’50s bathing suits- enjoying the Adriatic sea and the town is a desert (only me visiting around apparently!), but when the night falls everything changes and that’s when the party begins! It is impossible to describe the amount of people invading the streets of the city center, but the atmosphere is magical! I also managed to buy some little things (a beautiful Laura Ashley dress at “Fermata d’autobus”  a lovely seller from Livorno  and a pair of vintage “’80s does ’50s” sunglasses from Punti di Vista… you will see them both worn here soon!). And for sure it was great to say cheers to my friend Marco from Opherty & Ciocci who brought some of his amazing stuff as well.

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I decided to KISS… “keep it simple & sexy,” yet inspired: I wore a simple one strap black body top by Topshop and a long black skirt from American Apparel; I added my new vintage Prada black sandals and then I went for a touch of red and a touch of retro! A vintage red clutch and a beautiful red orchid hair-clip that I picked up on Ebay! …Red lips (Armani… my new favorite lippy) and nails (Chanel Dragon) and a pair of amazing original glasses from the late ’40s found in Reggio Emilia from Tabatà Vintage.

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The Ladybug’s a Rockin’ Robin at the “Rockin’T’Park” in Milano

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Two weeks ago I was invited by my friend Angela Eupani, CEO of Sculptures to Wear, to the first Vintage Festival Expo, which happened in Milan on the 15th and 16th of June.

I really like to go to the very first edition of Fairs or expos because, unless it’s a reincarnation of a previously named event, you have nothing to compare it to and they appear as something completely new. When I read the flyer, I immediately got excited about the program: the Festival was a real tribute to America and Americana. It put together the best of Rock’n Roll, Jazz, Country-Western and Rockabilly styles. From dancing classes and free dance floor, to workshops and exhibitions on burlesque, jive and boogie-woogie; from vintage styling to a vintage cars expo and of course, a vintage market with clothes, accessories, toys, books, posters, vinyl and furniture.

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Let me say that the promises were definitely kept! I decided to spend my afternoon (and night!) there just hanging around and spending some time with Angela. No need to say that I hellicoptered the main area with the vintage market and the rockabilly style!!

I was very pleased to find many new stallers that I hadn’t met before, like the lovely Sweet and Ginger who had the nicest handmade rockabilly accessories or the place where I bought this lovely handmade fascinator that got my attention from the moment it caught my eye (damn, I’m getting old and I can’t remember the nice lady name!)

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For the occasion I am wearing a vintage red dress from Rokit London in Brick Lane, a pair of studded red ankle boots and a pair of retro inspired frames from Lopposto in Forlì.

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After some burlesque exhibitions and, as you can see, a bit of shopping; I headed to Angela’s stall where I spent most of my time! I met Angela in Belgioioso at Next Vintage in April, and maybe you remember me mentioning her because she was the seller of that cerise red Balenciaga that I saw there.

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We decided to keep in touch and we did indeed: Angela is a tireless source of ideas, tips and advice on almost everything: from blogging, to selling, to vintage and event planning and marketing. I could stay hours listening to her and to her stories and ideas. As in Belgioioso, here too her stall was full of beautiful things, I took some pictures to show you some of my favorite pieces.

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She is not just a seller of beautiful things (especially wonderful designer handbags!), she’s also a vintage stylist and researcher who organizes incredible shows and events related to vintage fashion (like the very famous Vintage Workshop) and she works on spreading the love and passion that she has for vintage fashion and jewels. You can find her here.

Oh… I forgot to tell you… I came back home with this! The Balenciaga Le Dix Motorcycle in red cerise is finally mine!! (Special thanks to “Sculpture to Wear” and Angela!)

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