Ahh, Milan. The capital of fashion and finance – not that they’re interlinked. I had heard many stories of ‘cosmopolitan’ and ‘business-like’ Milan, and of course had seen plenty of photos from fashion week. But other than that, I didn’t know what to expect other than plenty of high-end shops and skyscrapers. And oh – the window shopping was glorious. There was row after row of luxury labels and apparel I had only witnessed in Vogue and while scrolling through runway photos. The excitement I felt for being in the presence of gorgeous clothing beat witnessing the Sistine Chapel, and the fact that there was no way I could afford to buy anything refused to dampen my spirits one bit.
Scattered around the city were stunning old buildings, which beautifully contrasted with the modern structures and made for good exploring. Of course we visited Milan’s Duomo, and the Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II (which used to be the premier spot for the Milanese bourgeoisie to meet), and the Museum. We didn’t get a chance to see The Last Supper, but that will have to wait for a future visit.
I dragged my housemate (who could not care less about fashion) to a vintage fashion exhibition, showcasing outfits created by distinguished Milanese designers over the last century. While I was poring over the use of fabrics and styles, he tried his best to engage with it all.
I only spent the day in Milan which is not nearly enough time to experience the city and its atmosphere, but I loved what I had the opportunity to see (and eat!). It truly is a fashion lover’s paradise, and I was in awe of how achingly chic the Milanese people were. It really made me question why I had to pack so sensibly and leave all my nice clothes at home, when I knew that I would be visiting a country that essentially breathes fashion.
This picture of the sunset on the Duomo was my last sight of Milan, and hopefully it won’t be long until I return to see more breathtaking views.
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The concept of Italy is so romantic. Everything is awash with shades of red (napoli sauce, vino rossa, Ferraris – that fiery Italian passion), and one can’t help but flirt with the expectation of a steamy love affair with a gorgeous Italian stallion thanks to the barrage of starry-eyed american movie narratives. Unrealistic flings aside, I will whole-heartedly give myself over to bottles of chianti and pasta al pomodore. And I refuse to engage in any self-talk about the effect of my extravagant consumption, because as seen in the inspiring american narrative of Eat Pray Love, one can simply buy bigger jeans. I intend to carry this attitude with me for the next two months in Italy, because I shall actually be living and breathing in the city of Firenze (for those uncultured folk, it’s Florence) and that’s a pretty exciting opportunity.
My introduction to Italian culture was set in Roma, which I suppose is natural for a first time traveller to this pizza-and-pasta-abundant land. My first impressions of Rome have been fabulous and filled with awe; how can one city house so many spectacular buildings and features? It was staggering how many imposing monuments would be waiting at every corner, with some dating back a couple thousand years. It clearly demonstrates how their history boasts plenty of wealth and pride, and as a history lover myself, I ate it all up.
We spent three days exploring the unmissable main sights, and often while it was cold and rainy. Fortunately I had my exceedingly bright Aldi jacket to protect me from the elements, but not from the stares of disapproving fashionable Romans.
My primary question and concern during my trip in Rome was: how did the artists manage to paint detailed images on ceilings? Surely there would have been some intense logistics (and possibly a few stiff necks) behind how these ceilings were created.
The architecture! The artwork! There’s evidence of unbelievable craftsmanship everywhere. Three days was sweet, but definitely not enough to completely appreciate the inexhaustible facets forming historic and contemporary Roma. This means that another visit to this remarkable city is on the agenda. x
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Last year, my aunty generously donated to me a heap of her old clothes. The treasure-filled bag contained silky materials, some sequins and plenty of shoulder pads- a homage to their 80s roots. Most of these clothes were specifically made for her, and in particular she adored this peach A-line dress.
You can immediately acknowledge the power of well-made clothes by the way they sit on your frame. This dress falls naturally over the waist and gathers into natural pleats in the skirt, forming a flattering silhouette supported by the gorgeous lace that really gives the dress a vintage vibe. To me, it just seems like the ultimate vintage party dress. You can imagine twirling around with the skirt following suit to some jazzy music.
I paired it with Nine West nude court shoes (they are killers to wear, but aren’t they so pretty?) and a pearl embellished clutch. Funnily enough, the jewellery is all vintage with a bracelet I picked up in an op shop and earrings that used to belong to my grandmother.
I am so grateful to have had this opportunity to wear this beautiful dress. My Aunty Mary sure has style. x
An array of colour is the intention for my wardrobe this season, with a minimal amount of black making an appearance. As an attempt to inject my mostly-black-wardrobe with some hints of colour, I purchased this radiant bell sleeved top from Tree of Life. Every time I put it on, I almost become overwhelmed by the shape and colour because it is pretty different from anything else I own – but I absolutely love it.
I paired it with some blue jeans and vintage clip-on earrings that I found buried in the depths of my mum’s old jewellery box. For such an exciting top, some casual bottoms are the way to go.
Top: Tree of Life
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The Triennial exhibition by the National Gallery of Victoria is stunning, diverse and completely free of charge. There is a huge collection of work from an assortment of different artists, and you can spend hours wondering around and admiring all the unique styles, which range from an ominous black statue made up of microphones, to a room of over 100 giant human skulls.
My favourite collection was Guo Pei’s ‘Legend’ Spring/Summer 2017 couture collection, which was out of this world. The fabrics, the colours, the detail – I still sigh in disbelief when I look at the photos taken, because each embellishment and accessory was an individual piece of art. And not to mention the magnificent shoes that were dripping in gold and jewels.
Inspired by her visit to a Cathedral in Switzerland, the religious connotations are evident by the crowns, dresses and the sheer opulence radiating from this collection which reflects the grandeur of some of the Cathedrals around Europe.
Like most couture collections, the outfits are not designed to be worn. However, I would have no qualms about wearing this little number out. There is just the right amount of shoulder-padding, and the moss green contrasts brilliantly against the bright gold. Those shoes would prove to be a little difficult to walk in, considering I can barely manage a pair of simple platforms.
So if you’re in Melbourne sometime before the 15th April, I would encourage you to see the exhibition for yourself – even if just for Guo Pei and her mesmerising art.
When I initially took a look at my prospective summer wardrobe in November, I was disappointed to see a complete lack of colour. Not only was I thoroughly worn out by the barrage of black and grey from my winterwear, but all I had left for summer was WHITE.
My eyes were starved for something exciting. Firstly I rifled through some of the local op shops and found a few items, and then headed over to Tree of Life during their Boxing Day sales because the store is always inundated with beautiful colours. I found this stunning green-patterned top with oversized bell sleeves, and bought it immediately. It’s unique from anything else hiding in my wardrobe, and actually suits plenty of items I already have in there.
I wore it with my suede creme shorts that I haven’t taken out in years, and my burgundy Prada bag to add a warmer and darker tone into the mix. I cannot believe that I haven’t worn these shorts in so long, considering how gorgeous they look with the lace detail. I suppose that’s what happens when you keep accumulating quality clothes over the years, and forget what you own!
Top: Tree of Life
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Playsuits, jumpsuits, onesies; whatever you prefer to call them, they’re plenty of fun. Obviously they’re not terribly convenient to get out of (and a trip to the bathroom is never a good idea ), but I suppose fashion isn’t always perfect.
Playsuits are one of my staple summer items, and I particularly love the silhouette of this Witchery playsuit. The khaki style reflects the heat of summer and need for mobility with its lightweight material, and I accessorised it with some silver hoops to match the belt. It’s a simplistic look but the playsuit doesn’t need much drama surrounding it, and summer fashion is generally lazy anyway.
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