The Ladybug and the rainy (but colored) island life

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I don’t know what happened this year but since I arrived in Messina (my hometown in Sicily) mid-August, the weather started acting funny: not a single day with sunny weather but always cloudy and very changeable. One hour of rain, two hours of sun and so on for two whole 2 weeks.

We literally chased the sun but I couldn’t get more than two/three hours per day!

The problem is that when it rains and it is August the life on an island is pretty boring: I read a lot, worked on the blog (I made some changes, did you notice?) and on the online shop. I basically prepared my comeback to Milan and planned all the activities for September/October (not fun at all!).

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One of these rainy days I was out and about with my sister (ok we went for a Sicilian “granita”!) we passed by this murals and she told me that it was perfect for a shooting as I looked like in the Caribbean! She was right, it was fun and so, here I am, in Sicily but looking like the Caribbean!

I wore my new orange wax skirt handmade by Heka Couture with an African print fabric that I bought in Senegal with my grey tee from Damsels in Distress and a pair of Clarks black gladiator sandals (one of the comfiest pair of shoes ever!).

Afro inspired earrings are from Mango while the Ghanaian mini bolga bag was a great find from Sankofa Beads and Baskets on Etsy.

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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.

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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.

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The Ladybug plays matchy matchy in Sicily

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The “Giardino Corallo” is one of the historical places in town with a long and complicated story: music, theatre, cinema, artistic center, it represents a bit of my hometown history and I really wanted to take some pictures outside this place because I like the “vintage” feeling.

I didn’t know that just around the corner a piece of street art was also waiting to be photographed!

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It was one of hottest winter days of my Sicilian holiday (I didn’t need to wear a coat) and I wore a beautiful handmade coordinated culottes and turban by Heka Couture with a simple turtleneck Zara jumper.

Pointy ankle boots are from Francesco Milano at Merry Go Round in Milan, silver loop earrings are vintage and my new red lipstick is from Wycon Cosmetics!

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The Ladybug Chronicles Sicily Coordinated (3)

The Ladybug’s hardest “goodbye” to Sicily

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Of all the street art in my hometown (Messina in Sicily) this is definitely my second favorite. For this reason I wanted to take some pictures here before leaving Sicily after my winter holidays.

Every time that I go home there is this hardest moment, when I have to say goodbye, knowing that I won’t be back for many months. Even if I try to smile and be happy there’s clear melancholy in my eyes and when I am writing this post I can catch that feeling perfectly. The good news is that now it’s less time compared to January!

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The Ladybug Chronicles Zara maxipull (1)

For my last Sicilian day of winter I wore a Zara maxi sweater (that I bought at the airport in Milan before leaving…since they opened a Zara store there I can’t help buying something before leaving!) with my new AMAZING Levi’s grey denim jeans. I am in love with this high-waist denim, the color and the shape. It looks like a vintage one but I bought it a few weekend before Christmas in Milan and I wear it all the time! One of the greatest buy of 2017!

Pointy black ankle boots are from Francesco Milano at merry Go Round in Milan and sparkling electric blue and golden headband is from Madame Ilary. Golden loop earrings are from Mango.

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The Ladybug kno-kno-knocking on a vintage door…

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I’ve been passing by this door probably a million times in my life but when I really put my eyes on it last summer I fell in love with it!

The frame felt so vintage that I wanted some pictures there even if I wasn’t wearing anything vintage!

But I was wearing a piece that is very important to me: a typical Senegalese skirt that was offered to me by a friend of mine in Dakar before leaving her amazing country. I received so many fashion pieces there and I cherish them as if they were the most precious ones, and in some way they are as they are.

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I paired my beautiful skirt with a navy tee from Cos and navy Swedish Hasbeens sandals; but I also added another African touch, another handmade piece with wax fabric, but that I bought in Milan a few years ago (at the “Artigiano in Fiera” craft fair) : a pair of giant statement earrings!

Moroccan straw bag from Maluan Maroquinerie on Etsy.

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The Ladybug has the earth colors of Sicily

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Sicily is my earth. Sicily is my heart.

I left this wonderful land many years ago (exactly 23) to travel the world and to find a better life up north but this beautiful island is still in my heart and it is still my earth.

I love this set of pics because it has some of the beautiful colors of my Sicily, I call them the colors of my earth. It also has the colors of my second earth, Africa. But they are not so different in the end!

On my way to the beach this summer I stopped by this dark red building to take some pictures because I thought it really suited my whole beach outfit!

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I was wearing a Zara large sand playsuit (I bought it on sale last summer, without even trying it just because I loved it and it was so cheap!) and a Madame Ilary handmade turban made with one of my favorite African wax fabrics.

I also wore my adored African necklace from Afrohemien and a beautiful leather necklace from Diffusione Tessile that makes me think of the beautiful colors of my “roots”.

As usual I wore my Birkenstock sandals and my Moroccan round straw bag from Maluan on Etsy.

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The Ladybug is ready for a very Sicilian Market

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There is something that I do every time that I go back home: I just go to the local market.  There is something in Sicilian markets that I cannot find anywhere else, especially here in Milan: I love wandering and observing people speaking my dialect (a dialect that I think that I forgot but it is not true!), fruits and vegetables that really tastes like fruits and vegetables, colors and smells that are so typical and that remind me of when I was a kid.

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While waiting for my next trip, I am sharing my outfit from last visit to the market during my last summer holidays.

I wore beautiful handmade culottes made by Heka Couture with amazing African wax print paired with Cos white tee.

I also wore two vintage pieces: a beautiful African necklace that I found at Tricia Leonard vintage in Munich and a red straw basket bag, a personal buy from my trip to Guadeloupe in the 90s.

Birkenstocks at my feet…as every day during my summer holidays!

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The Ladybug’s Sicilian Arabesque

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Sicily, again.

I called this set Sicilian Arabesque as one of the things that I still love from my homeland is the Arab influence on everything: on food, on our physical traits, on architecture, on nature, on language…their influence is everywhere.

When I saw this building it made me think of this, although it is probably not an original Arab building, but I just stopped the car and asked my sister to take a few pictures of me!

We were on the way back from the beach so I was wearing a typical beach outfit (but I added lipstick, just for the pictures!!).

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I wore a handmade Heka Couture harem pants (just to stay on topic!) made with African wax fabric and a Ink your travel tee (I love this new brand that makes travel themed clothes and accessories for globetrotters!).

Round Moroccan straw bag (on topic again!) is from Etsy, Birkenstock sandals and Mango African inspired necklace.

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The Ladybug and a pinky Sicilian sunset

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Honestly this year it is harder than usual to get into the winter mood: maybe I was just hit by winter on my way back from Sri Lanka and I still cannot stand the idea of wearing coats and tights but I think that I will keep posting summer outfits for a while!

Also because I have so much still to share from my summer, starting from my wonderful trip to Senegal and some nice views and outfits from my homeland, Sicily.

This set of pictures was taken during my first day at home in Sicily: while enjoying a walk with my sister along the sea we realized that there was a wonderful pink sunset that perfectly matched my off shoulder top from Topshop!

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As usual when I am at home I was super relaxed and my outfit just mirrored the idea; I paired the top with loose jeans from Zara and super cool accessories:  the round straw Moroccan bag was my summer favorite as I wore it almost every day, it is an Etsy find (btw Etsy is my new addiction!); earrings are from Zara (I bought them at the airport on the way back home just to celebrate the new opening of a Zara store in Malpensa airport!) and shoes are Birkenstock’s (another summer favorite: I basically wore these every day in Senegal and in Sicily!).

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The Ladybug’s outfit for a shopping day (the only one!) in Sicily

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I must confess that when I am on holiday in Sicily I bring with me super light suitcase: only swimsuits, flip flops, sun creams, sundresses, running shoes and clothes and maybe a dress or two in case I decide to do something different that going to the beach, running or relaxing at home. This is my real way to relax: I go out and do things eleven months a year and when I am on holiday I go in a total relax mood that doesn’t need any makeup or heeled shoes and dressing up.

There are just two occasions when I need to get dressed properly during my summer holidays: my birthday party and a last summer sales session at home usually with my sister in our favorite shops in town.

This is when we made this little shooting during a little break in our shopping session!

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I wore a Mango dark orange tunic dress with an handmade African knotted headband handmade by Madame Ilary with an old African fabric that I had at home (it was an envelope bag for an Asos Africa dress that I bought many years ago!), Nike for & Other Stories white sneakers (the only pair of shoes that I brought with me!), Valentino round frames and Miu Miu bag.

I’ve been told by a girl in a shop that I looked like a 60’s girl…best compliment of the day!

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