The Ladybug can get married or go to the grocery store with almost the same outfit!

Question of the day: are there clothes made only for certain occasions? We often call them with the name of the right occasion to wear them: bridal dress, cocktail dress, prom dress etc. but shall we really stick to these labels?

I personally don’t think so: I am the queen of mix and match, wear it as you feel it, and I love playing with fashion along with my mood and I want to have fun when I get dressed; I also want to respect my personality and I feel really sad when I am given a dress code or a suitable event for what I am wearing.

For this reason I often buy pieces that can easily be worn in different occasions and accessorized in different ways, dressed up or dressed down, depending on your mood, on how you feel or what you want to express.

The Sartorial Vintage Jacket (an amazing upcycled piece created by Madame Ilary with Le Fie Studio starting from vintage blazers) is a great example of what I mean. One day I saw this wonderful white piece at Madame Ilary showroom: a very rare vintage white smoking blazer with fantastic silk puff sleeves and flower. I immediately said “I could get married with it!”.  And I definitely would. But at that exact moment I didn’t have to get married and I just needed to go to the grocery store for my weekly food shopping, and I wore it like that: with a pair of grey vintage Levi’s, an handmade viscose pussybow shirt from Madame Ilary (as well as the lurex turban) and a pair of second hand Ash sneakers.

Basically I realized that with the same jacket I could get married (with a white silk slip dress for example!) or go to the grocery store with the exact outfit that I was wearing that day!

Isn’t it amazing?

Success! You're on the list.

The Ladybug on how to wear a vintage hairnet every day

The hairnet is one of these accessories that screams vintage from everywhere!

What I mean is that it is an accessory that was consistently popular in the years prior to World War I, but their sales plummeted after the war when more women began to style their hair in a bob.

Since then its use became really rare and generally limited to those people who love to recreate a perfect repro of the 40s and 50s style. It is very hard to find them vintage and most of those that you can find nowadays are mostly handmade from vintage 40s fashion lovers who aim at recreating this amazing hairstyle, possibly with victory rolls!

But can we wear it outside of this context and make it a modern piece for our daily hairstyle?

The answer is yes!

And I think that it is sufficient to have a lovely 40s style worn with modern clothes, even a pair of jeans as one of the best options.

When I had my perfect hairnet vintage hairstyle done by the amazing Ketty (one of the best vintage make-up artists and hairstylist that I have ever met) during a special event at Madame Ilary showroom I decided to wear it with my vintage denims, Ouigal aqua ankle boots and an amazing handmade Victorian brocade coat from Madame Ilary.

I think that the total outfit was quite nicely balanced mixing old styles and modern pieces in a lovely way, don’t you agree?

Btw, my teal hairnet is not vintage unfortunately (I’ve never found a vintage one!) but it is a lovely reproduction that I found on Etsy longtime ago and that I still cherish a lot.

To be honest I was also thinking that once I will feel comfortable again with crocheting I could make some for me and for my friends, isn’t it a cool idea?

Success! You're on the list.

The Ladybug in a “wax winterland”

Wax in winter looks impossible? Not at all! Wearing our wax prints only during summer days is a huge limitation to this fabric that can be worn every season of the year!

Maybe because I cannot give up colors and flashy patterns, but I cannot imagine living 6 months a year without wax prints!!

Wanna try? It is sufficient to correctly layer and it and it will give you light, joy and happiness all year long! Of course if the day is around 0 degrees you can wait for a better temperature to give it a try!

I just want to share one of my favorite examples here (it was November and the temperature was around 10 degrees!): I remember that at the time I had just received this adorable trench handmade in Togo from Bazar Pagne (after winning one of their giveaways!). I love it so much that I couldn’t wait two more seasons to wear it so I decided to include it in an outfit for a brunch out with friends.

I wore it with a vintage 80s rust and golden sweater from Mister Libra in Milan, with two more layers: an organic cotton tee and a cotton/wool vest to keep me warm.

I added very old Zara corduroy rust culottes and two 80s vintage pieces in a lovely caramel tone: a vintage maxi bag from Lullaby Vintage in Barcelona and a pair of amazing boots from London Corner Vintage.

By the way, let me add another tip here: when it comes to the choice of colors to pair with wax prints I strongly recommend to dare other colors than black or white. You will be surprised of the interesting alternatives that you may find. I also suggest to choose a color that you feel interesting when matching the main color of the wax print, in this case I love the rust with the dark yellow of the trench.

Btw, for this same reason I added golden maxi hoop earrings from Gogo Philip!

How do you feel about this one?

Success! You're on the list.

The Ladybug meets the Queen of Vintage: Anna Piaggi by Karl Lagerfeld in Milan

When I heard about the opening of Anna-Chronique: 70s and 80s. Anna Piaggi by Karl Lagerfeld at the Fondazione Sozzani in Milan I immediately felt the call!

Anna Piaggi is one of my main icons for many reasons, one of them being the fact that she was the first one to my knowledge to mix designer modern pieces with vintage many decades ago. I also loved her strong personality and the way she showed it through her clothes.

Last year, the Fondazione Sozzani with the Associazione Culturale Anna Piaggi launched this exhibit dedicated to Anna Piaggi but in particular to her relationship with Karl Lagerfeld in a double exhibit: a selection of drawings signed by Karl Lagerfeld portraying his muse Anna Piaggi, realized between 1973 and 1984. Not only 130 portraits but also pictures, manuscripts, jewelry and of course hats from her personal collection…a real dream for vintage lovers!

The second exhibit is a fashion diary of the 90s: 50 Karl Lagerfeld drawings realized between 1990 and 1997 where the style and fashion sense of the iconic Anna Piaggi are represented at their best through the eyes of king Karl!

To visit this double exhibit that I adored I wore a tribute to Anna Piaggi tee, handpainted by Madame Ilary (it was the perfect occasion to wear it!), a vintage electric blue blazer found on Vinted by Freja Vintage, a pair of Rouje jeans. I added a lovely ethnic vintage bag from Bivio, small Fulani earrings from Dielle Nubya and a pair of old beige Supergas.

Success! You're on the list.

The Ladybug, a Rolls Royce and some mustard sauce

Strange title there, isn’t it?

Well let’s try to analyse it: why a Rolls Royce? Rolls Royce is the English name for one of the most famous wax patterns, the hibiscus one, also known in French as Fleurs de Mariage (wedding flowers). Even if the names are completely different the meaning of this “pagne” is exactly the same: it represents happiness within a couple and it is known for being considered as a good luck gift, bringing success and abundance to those who wear it (possibly the reason why it is called Rolls Royce!). It is a very popular pattern but also a traditional one, for this reason I truly believe that every real wax lover should have at least one piece in Fleurs de Mariage! I have to say that I have more than one, even in different colours, but this classical red/white pattern is definitely the one that I prefer. For this reason I asked Magali from Atelier Habibi to create one of her lovely Mahotella skirts in this pattern for me; and I wear it all the time (even in winter although these pictures are taken in Cagliari last September) and it is one of my “wax it-pieces”

And why mustard sauce? Mustard is the exact color of this adorable vintage shirt coming from a deadstock that I found on Vinted some time ago: peter pan collar, lovely embroidery on the front and fantastic puff sleeves: how could I resist?

Mixing vintage and handmade wax pieces is my favorite activity but I added a couple of very special pieces here that made the whole package super fun:

  • First of all this handmade canvas bag with a very interesting quote in Sardinian language (it translates with something like F*ck plastic!) that I found at Recyclerie in Cagliari and that made laugh everyone in town (they all asked if I knew what it meant!!)
  • My favorite clogs from Lotta from Stockholm (love this brand when it comes to clogs!)

Less fun but still beautiful my cross-body Cartier vintage bag from Grey Vintage Shop.

Success! You're on the list.

The Ladybug on how to wear a vintage Indian dress hippy-but-not-too-hippy style! (Part 2)

Another vintage Indian dress, another “hippy buy not too hippy” outfit, another colored corner of Cagliari (I am madly in love with this little square and its adorable colored houses).

The beautiful Indian vintage dress in soft gauze with lovely quilted details and purple shades, comes from Delphine Vintage in Milan and it is perfect to show you a big deal of caftans and Indian dresses: they are ideals for layering! Being a fan of layering my clothes I think that this is one of the advantages (and maybe also one of the reasons why I love them so much) of this type of clothes. Also, in winter their possibilities of layering are almost infinite!

As it was still quite warm in Cagliari in September I went for a soft layering, adding only handmade large soft viscose navy pants from Madame Ilary and I loved this easy chic style so much!

I added the exact same accessories that I used for the first outfit with the other Indian dress: sequined flat shoes from Colors of California, vintage Cartier cross-body bag from Grey Vintage Shop and my vintage and handmade Indian silver rings!

What do you think of this second idea? Which outfit did you prefer?

You can see the first outfit here!

Success! You're on the list.

The Ladybug on how to wear a vintage Indian dress hippy-but-not-too-hippy style!

Another vintage piece that is often underestimated in its uses is the Indian dress: very popular in the 70s when the ethnic pieces had a massive come back not only in the hippy community. This is the reason why nowadays the image of the Indian floral dress is often linked with the idea of the hippy style.

Starting from the point that I adore the hippy style (I love to style my vintage Indian dresses with flowers in my head, wooden clogs and sandals and leather cross-body bags!) and therefore I have nothing against it, I just would love to share in how many other different ways it is possible to wear this amazing ethnic piece.

Today I want to show you one of them (spoiler: I will show you another one next week!) with a beautiful vintage Indian floral dress that I found at Live In Vintage in Milan last spring. I loved its style and colors and I decided to add it to my ethnic collection and to wear it the last time during my visit in Cagliari in September for a lovely afternoon out with my friends.

I decided to leave a bit of its hippy style (just a little bit!) but mixed it with pieces that helped dissolving the 70s vibe (just a little bit!):

  • A vintage Cartier cross-body bag from Grey Vintage Shop
  • A pair of sequined flat sandals from Colors of California
  • Big golden Fulani earrings and vintage Indian jewelry

What do you think of my Indian vintage dress not too hippy but still a bit hippy because I love that?!

Success! You're on the list.

The Ladybug has a few ideas on how to wear a vintage white caftan

Last week we discussed about vintage caftans and I tried to show you how easy it is to incorporate them in your daily outfits all the time, without considering them just as beachwear.

So I decided to keep offering ideas on how to wear this beautiful piece, mixed with other vintage (or not) pieces and I started from a beautiful yet simple vintage white embroidered caftan that I bought from Roses & Vintage last summer. I have to say that Silvia often has this type of vintage finds and I regularly follow her Instagram stories to spot caftans and boho tunics!

This is my first white caftan: probably a Moroccan piece in soft and fresh cotton, short sleeved, with a lovely embroidery around the neck. It was the perfect simple piece with an ethnic twist that I was looking for!

I tried then two different outfits to show how easy it is to wear it in town:

  • Outfit 1. I paired the vintage caftan with a statement vintage piece that I deeply love: the silk Chinese tunic that I found from ND Second during a vintage fair in Milan. Superb vintage piece, in the softest silk ever, great colors and embroideries, I almost died when I saw it. I love how this two pieces match, basically because the caftan is very simple and it can easily complement such a stunning piece!
  • Outfit 2. Completely different mood, I paired the vintage caftan with a wonderful handmade piece from Madame Ilary. A Japanese inspired green and silver fabric for this short sleeved cape-coat that is such a beauty! I couldn’t help adding a vintage lady touch with the 40s inspired black turban (also from Madame Ilary).

Common pieces for both outfits: the vintage 80s earrings from Live In Vintage in Milan, the white sequined flats from Colors of California, the amazing henna work of Laura Mehndi on my hands!

Now I want to ask you again: do you really believe that caftans are for covering swimsuits at the beach?!

Success! You're on the list.

The Ladybug will make you change your mind on vintage caftans

Originating in Asia, the caftan has been worn by a number of cultures around the world for thousands of years. Though the caftan is of ancient Mesopotamian (modern-day Iraq) origin, it has been used by many West and Southwest Asian ethnic groups. It may be made of wool, cashmere, silk, or cotton, and may be worn with a sash. Popular during the time of the Ottoman Empire, detailed and elaborately designed garments were given to ambassadors and other important guests at the Topkapi Palace. Variations of the caftan were inherited by cultures throughout Asia and were worn by individuals in Russia (North Asia, Eastern Europe and formerly Central Asia), Southwest Asia and Northern Africa (…) In some cultures, the kaftan has served as a symbol of royalty”.

Now, I wonder: how come that we Europeans consider it as a piece to wear at the beach as as swimsuit cover? NO WAY!

Ok, I am a vintage caftan lover, I totally die when I see a vintage elaborated piece from somewhere faraway in the world but when people say: you can wear it at the beach, I die twice!!

For me this magnificent piece, better if vintage, is a sort of art that can be worn exactly everywhere (ok, also at the beach!) and reducing it to a beach piece is not recognizing its value and multiple opportunities to style it. Winter, summer, autumn, spring, the caftan is perfect all year long!

I found this wonderful Indian vintage piece in white gauze from Vintage Afropicks selection (Tiziana knows very well what I die-for!) and I couldn’t help wearing it at the first occasion last summer: a Sunday lunch at the Jewish neighbour in Milan. I decided to wear it in town with a very casual outfit: as it is quite transparent I wore it with a white organic cotton tee and a pair of C17 vintage jeans from Inimitable Vintage. I added a sparkling piece (my Colors of California sequined flats) and a wonderful handmade in Italy mini bucket bag from PS Red Whale.

All my silver jewels are vintage Indian and my henna hand decoration was made from the amazing Laura Mehndi.

What do you think? No more caftans for the beach right?!

Success! You're on the list.

The Ladybug wearing a touch of vintage sartorial kente

Even if Vinokilo is not one of my favorite vintage events, I have to say that when I can I try to have a look at their events in Milan because, if I am good enough in hunting the gem, sometimes I also find it!

In particular I have a close look at their ethnic vintage dresses because it happened a couple of times that I found lovely Indian, Chinese and even African pieces there.

The dress that I am wearing for my usual visit at the Duomo of Messina last summer (I love this place and I go to see it every time that I am back home) is one of those finds: it is a very unusual dress, sartorially made with a printed cotton imitating the patterns of traditional kente! Not comparable with the original pieces, not even with the printed kente-inspired wax, but still rare enough to catch my attention!

I also love the sleeves and the fact that it was clearly handmade convinced me to make it mine: considering the kilo sale I got it really cheap.

I wore it with my new Cult platform studded sandals (I think that I have already told you how happy I was when I found out that this brand is still producing shoes with the same vibe of the late 80s-early 90s when I first discovered it!) found during a store final sale in Sicily for around 15 euros and with two of my iconic pieces: Gucci squared black frames and Cartier vintage cross-body bag. I finished the outfit with an African wax headwrap and oval earrings, handmade with love in Rome and they are a lovely present from my friend Simona for my last birthday.

Success! You're on the list.