The Ladybug is PrePPy in vintage!

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Who doesn’t like a bit of preppy style every now and then?

I must confess that I’m not a fan of preppy but I have a couple of cool preppy pieces and today I decided to wear them all together! When I looked at myself in the mirror I really felt like a preparation school girl (except for my wrinkles!).

Basically I’m wearing vintage/thrift head-to-toe (I’d better say head-to-ankle as shoes are not vintage!): let’s start from my navy double-breasted blazer with golden buttons, a real vintage thrifted piece and also one of my favorite bargains ever. I found it in NYC at the Salvation Army and I paid it only 6.99 dollars! I still wear this jacket a lot with many different styles and it is one of my wardrobe favorites!

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I paired the jacket with a vintage tartan skirt from A.N.G.E.L.O.: I bought it years ago during the Vintage Week event in Milan, as at the time I had a thing with vintage tartan. I sold most of my vintage tartan pieces since then but I still keep this one!

The bow shirt is an old find form a vintage/retro store in Naples and the shoes are from Lazzari.

The straw bag is another vintage piece that I adore: I bought it many years ago from Opherty & Ciocci during a vintage fair in Italy as I really love straw bags (I think I need more of them in my life actually!) and 70’s long horizontal bags; so two things that I love in the same bag!

PS: I also chose a typical brownstone building in Milan for this set of pictures, just to fit the whole preppy thing!!

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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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A Ladybug’s vintage aperitivo in Milan

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I don’t know if it’s just me or if it happens to you too but my weekends always start with a phone call from (or to) a friend saying: What are your plans for today?

Once we realize that we are free and that we have time to spend together we start checking online what’s on in town, trying to find the event that will be perfect for our couple of hours of chatting and – possibly – drinking! It can be a market, an exhibit, a shop opening, a lecture, a concert.

Milan is a town full of events of every kind and it is almost impossible not to find what you are looking for, it is just a bit harder than anywhere else due to the large offer. But when you have a lovely place (Frida bar in the Isola district) organizing a vintage event (Let’s Vintage) with special offers and bargains it is easier to pick up the perfect event that makes everybody happy!

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It was indeed the perfect occasion to drink my favorite ice tea in town (Hanoi!) and to grab vintage bargains for really ridiculous prices.

It was also the perfect occasion to wear my new thrifted palazzo pant from Mary Portas charity shop in Edinburgh (never worn, still with tags, only 4 quid!), my new favorite fringed leather jacket from IL2L at Your Shores, Michael Kors bucket bag, Nike 4 & Other Stories white sneakers and Céline sunglasses.

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The Ladybug goes French for the opera!

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What if you receive a last minute invitation from your friend to go to the opera at the Teatro alla Scala to see the rehearsal of “Rigoletto” and you didn’t have enough time to plan your outfit?

You just go French, because no matter what, how and when but French style is always chic, elegant and has that retro touch that we all need in our lives!

I must confess that I read books and posts promising to tell you how to be a perfect French stylish girl in every situation but unfortunately I guess it is something very hard to get, unless you were born in France!

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Any attempt is still welcome so I created my opera outfit starting from a vintage French beret hat that I found on ebay many years ago. I decided to add a statement vintage hatpin from Tricia Leonard Vintage shop in Munich. I mixed all this vintage with high street and designer pieces: a black coat from Sportmax, a black sweater from Dixie, grey culottes from Imperial. To complete the outfit: Marc Jacobs thrifted grey ankle boots from Epiphany Vintage in Frankfurt and Miu Miu handbag.

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The Ladybug’s first “marketing” experience: East Market Milano with Madame Ilary

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In the last two years I have been asked tons of times why I didn’t start selling “for real” instead of only selling my vintage and thrifted goods online. I have been asked if I wanted to open a shop or if I thought of selling during vintage markets and events. My answer is yes! I still dream of having a vintage shop or of having enough space in my house to keep all my vintage and thrifted collection in a storage room and to bring it around during the weekends and selling it at funny markets all around Italy.

Still, as I’m not working on it for the next future, I am keeping open my Ebay shop (btw feel free to have a look at it whenever you want – you can find the direct link in the Contact page) and I am enjoying the online selling which allows you sometimes to start new virtual friendships all over the world!

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At the same time, when my friend Ilaria from Madame Ilary asked me to share a stall with her at the East Market in Milan I couldn’t say no, for many different reason: first of all it was a “first” for both and I really wanted to make this experience with her as we often talked about that; it was a way to test our business and see how it worked “in the street”; secondly the place was really perfect: the area of Lambrate where the market takes place is vibrant and full of life lately and I thought it was perfect for our “launch”; last but not least, the East Market is for sure one of my favorite markets in Milan: full of interesting people, street food, flower market and a beautiful area outside to eat, drink and chat.

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I wasn’t wrong as we enjoyed the experience pretty much and we had a lot of fun even if we felt like the beginners of the market as most of stallers were way more experienced than us! Still it was the occasion to meet new people, to find old friends (like my beloved Francesca from Metalica who had a stall not far from us!) and to sell some vintage accessories and the wonderful handmade turbans made by Ilaria. The atmosphere was really interesting, a lot of people of different age, interests and style, a kind of potpourri that I appreciated a lot, definitely a great experience!

This means that you better watch out as you will probably see me around again in a market near you…in the meanwhile keep having a look at my Ebay shop!

I wore Dixie black culottes, Topshop white shirt, vintage bag by Frendo Vintage, New Balance sneakers, Nepalese silver necklace and handmade African turban by Madame Ilary.

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The Ladybug in Vintage Bruxelles pt. 1

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Did you know that Bruxelles is considered one of the European capitals of vintage? And did you know that this is absolutely true?

I first went to Bruxelles more than ten years ago and I was shocked to see how much it changed in just a decade! The occasion was a visit with my old friend Valentina who moved there not too long ago, and I must say that we spent one of the best weekends EVER!

The weather was pretty awesome, food and beer just delightful and company was perfect. We enjoyed two beautiful days around the city and we visited some of the best vintage shops in town. And I must say: not only are there tons of incredible vintage shops in town, but the selection and prices are really interesting (no need to say I bought a lot of stuff right?!).

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For the first day we got lost around the city and her incredible sights, walking all day and visiting all the most important touristic sites: from the Grande Place to the Manneken Pis, the Royal Palace and its gardens, the Sablon and Grand Sablon with its beautiful and flowery squares, Sainte Catherine and the incredible Magritte Museum. But we also got lost inside the lovely shops: amazing “chocolateries,” the incredible street art at every corner and the beautiful alleys of the old town. We also walked to the Chatelaine area, one of the most vibrant areas of the town. And a bit outside of the touristic tours (this is one of the advantages of visiting the town with someone living there!), we visited the incredible museum Horta.

In this area we found the lovely Retro Paradise, part of the “Les Petits Riens” charitable association. They have a huge stock of recycled clothes where you can spot some gems in the mess and with very low prices (I got a lovely Audrey Hepburn style hat for 7 euros!). It’s such the famous charity shop in town that it has inspired local fashion designers to host an annual show based on outfits bought at Les Petits Riens.

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On the way back to our dinner (typical Belgian “moules and frites” – mussels and French fries – at the historical restaurant Chez Leon), we stopped by one of the best vintage shops in Bruxelles (in my opinion): Episode. This shop is not far from the Grande Place. It is a bit scary when you get in because of the huge amount of clothing and accessories that you can find there, but once you are amerced- the overwhelming feeling quickly subsides. I loved the dresses, trousers, shirts and jackets and the incredible stock of vintage kimonos. We couldn’t resist, even my friends who are not specially vintage fans, buying incredible pieces there (the prices were also very tempting I must say!). Of course I got a vintage kimono and a couple of dresses that I can’t wait to show you!

I wore retro inspired Zara striped culottes, Mango navy sweater, Cos white t-shirt, my new super comfortable New Balance sneakers and my thrifted Balenciaga bag.

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The Ladybug’s Magically Delicious Roman Holiday

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There is always a good excuse for a Roman weekend: this time it was visiting the Matisse’s Arabesque exhibit at the Scuderie del Quirinale with my lovely Roman BFF!

For once, I left my usual hunt of vintage shops and decided to get completely absorbed into Roman life: from delicious food, to running (and spinning) and to wonderful night walk just enjoying the air, aroma and the great company!

I truly love Milan and sometimes I feel like I don’t want to be elsewhere other than there (well, not all the time, even if I have to admit my urge of being always “somewhere else” has calmed!) but leaving it for a weekend is also refreshing- especially when you know that you’ll return!

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We started the weekend with a great run in Ostia, in the beautiful pine grove along the sea (two things that I often miss in Milan, a pine grove and the sea!). Later we headed to the amazing Matisse’s exhibit and then enjoyed a good walk in great company of new and old friends: vino and the best “cacio e pepe” pasta ever in the Garbatella neighborhood (Il ristoro degli angeli is one of the restaurants that you must absolutely try if you are visiting the eternal city!). By the way, if you’re looking for a perfect retro inspired and absolutely vintage accomodation when in Rome, I suggest you to consider the Hotel Oceania. Its location is perfect! And the decor (from the original vintage floor and the amazing antique pieces) makes you dream in black and white while you live in color!

Sunday was a day for sport again, spinning this time (good ol’ spinning!) before the greatest lunch chez one by the best chef in Rome: my friend’s lovely mum! With the sand in the hourglass of my trip completely empty, I left Rome with the usual promise of going back again soon!

At the Matisse exhibit I wore a Marks and Spencer white shirt with a thrifted skirt from Epiphany Vintage in Frankfurt, H&M leather jacket, Tosca Blu ankle boots, Miu Miu handbag and a Rokit Vintage London turban.

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The Ladybug’s Vintage Tour of Germany Continues: Next Stop, Frankfurt!

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It looks like Germany is my second home so far this year! Munich, Berlin and now a little tour of Frankfurt!

But this lovely weekend was a bit different: one of my best friends lives there and I realized that the last time I went to see her there was when she moved… ten years ago!

Many things have changed since then and not only in our lives! Frankfurt itself is a different town: there is a lot to do, a lot of young people and plenty of nice places for brunch, coffee, tea or a lovely meal out. The weather was a bit cloudy, but as it didn’t rain, a lot of people were hanging out as Carmen and I enjoyed a good shopping session between our much more enjoyed busy and long chats!

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As for vintage I must say that Frankfurt is not really a vintage town: there are a few shops, but most of them are thrift stores. Now don’t get me wrong, you can still find some great bargains, like we did.

Epiphany is, for sure, my favorite shop in town: we spent a couple of hours inside the shop and we fell in love with the beautiful collection of designer, high street and even vintage pieces (shoes are to-die-for… consider yourself warned!) and we came out with a big bag full of second-hand and vintage pieces! Surprisingly; the prices are really affordable, I would dare say cheap in many cases, even for designers’ pieces. I was very proud of our finds, especially this pair of amazing late ’60s yellow Escada shoes! Carmen also stepped out with the beautiful coat that she’s wearing in the picture… not bad for our thrift shopping session!

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Secondelle is another lovely shop, but when we arrived it was closed and we could only admire the windows- full of Chanel bags and Louboutin… our credit cards were safe! For charity shop lovers, Oxfam has a couple of interesting shops in town too, one having only books, music and DVDs.

If you want to have a good brunch, you can head to the lovely and cozy Nordlicht where I took this picture. You could also take a trip to the Italian spot, Little Italy, that has a huge and tasty buffet. And for a lovely aperitif I may suggest Iimori, a delicious Japanese restaurant with a French touch that really deserves a visit! Speaking of French, La Maison du Pain is perfect for a French lunch or dinner or should I say a few fine desserts!

In these pictures I wore a Max&Co coat, Zara bow shirt, Peter Pilotto for Target skirt, Tosca Blu ankle boots, Miu Miu bag and a wonderful handmade wool turban from the amazing Madame Ilary!

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The Ladybug Jilts Milan Fashion Week to Play the Field in Rome pt. 3: Roman the Ruins

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A bit hangover from the beer and still quite wet from the rain of the day before, I woke up early Sunday morning to take a long ride alone while the others went to see the Pope in Piazza San Pietro! (Please don’t scold me for this… my mum already did!)

I indeed preferred to follow Marco’s advice to have a look at the Borghetto Flaminio, a typical junk dealers market in Piazza Marina where I could find some good vintage and thrift bargains! I had already heard about it before so it was time for me to have a look.

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There is a bit of everything: from thrift finds for men and women to real vintage gems, everything at very affordable prices! The atmosphere is very nice and most of the stallers were extremely friendly and funny. For the entry price of 1,60 euros, I must say it was a nice experience! It is not very big and not crowded at all. And in the center of it all, there’s a nice bar with tables where you can stop for a nice pause and take in the sun (yes, it came out on Sunday!) during a shopping session!

I was dying for a Fendi vintage coat and a Gucci handbag, but in the end I only left with this lovely red dotted sweater with a silk bow from Blumarine in mint condition for only 35 euros!

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While waiting for the others to meet me, I walked around Piazza del Popolo and Villa Borghese and took some pictures of the sights… I also found a nice small handcrafts market with some great American vintage pieces (mostly jewels), but I managed not to buy anything!

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Once we were all together, we headed to Piazza di Spagna for a typical tourist photo session: I am wearing an old Kate Moss for Topshop dress, Patrizia Pepe coat and a thrift snood and French hat with my lovely Opella brooch! I added my new Max & Co. messenger bag and riding boots.

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The Ladybug’s Comfy Outfit for Strolling the Chelsea Garage Antiques Market…

For my perfect Sunday stroll in Chelsea I chose a simple and comfy outfit : it was a beautiful sunny day. It was a little windy and I knew I was going to do a lot of walking… again!

I decided to wear a thrifted Topshop denim shirt dress (a real bargain from a thrift store in London a few years ago because it had a few buttons missing!), with a Topshop faux leather tan jacket and a pair of grey tights.

As you can see I’m already wearing my Michael Kors sunglasses from Century 21 and a pair of uber comfy suede biker boots from Max & Co.

I’m also wearing my favorite ring ever, the eye ring from Crazy Pig Designs London, and my 70s vintage bangles from Cavalli & Nastri Milano.