after ranting on an apparently sensitive topic (no comments, anyone? really. is finnish design export a taboo topic or what? am i deluded? being unfair or just plain wrong?), i want to give some credit where it belongs. still playing in the minor league both domestically and internationally, but showing true entrepreneurial spirit, real talent and affable personal service is tiia vanhatapio. her shop is just around the corner and the lady herself is often present.
she hasn't been shy to push her product for visibility and defends unapologetically her modernized retro-femme designs and, simultaneously, remains approachable and sincere. sure, i was surprised to find her collaborating with vero moda for the skunk girl -line, but the result was quite successful. she stands tall for a reason.
the iconic little black dress gets such a flattering form in the hands of ms vanhatapio that if i can think of one lbd every woman should own, it would be 'mamie'. seen on dita von teese and several finnish fashionistas, the dress is glamorous, flatters an incredible variety of body shapes (yeah, i bet you didn't think that!) and is really affordable for the quality. it is all in the cut: the corseted top defines, the skirt creates curves and there are small folds in the front, just enough to create or cover a soft feminine belly. small pockets on both sides offer an escape for anxious hands for those who might otherwise feel too exposed in the baring number. sultry, seductive, but not in the least trashy, and that's the way we like it, right?
available in a variety of sizes or made-to-measure in your chosen fabric, it is an ever versatile classic in the making. by adding ruffles to the neckline or to the pockets, the basic shape can be altered in various ways without losing it's edge.
the one i'm wearing below is a one-off in sparkly tweed with a removable belt. add a pair of marc by mj heels and even my newly shaved head (thanks for the votes, the hair is gone!) won't compromise my femininity.
if dresses aren't for you, her line of baby clothing might be something to familiarize yourself with. vraiment jolie!