In a world dominated by fast fashion and a casual look that sometimes moulds into a homogenous mainstream style, somebody with as unique a look as Duchess Milianda can stop you in your tracks. That is exactly what happened when Retropeepers stumbled across her incredible Instagram page. We were flabbergasted by her incredible looks, which are inspired by looks from the rococo era, the 1800s and 1900s – as Milianda herself puts it: “when a women’s dress was an art of style and living.”
Duchess Milianda is a polish model and stylist, however she is primarily most famous for her incredible fashion design and dressmaking skills and her stunning gowns are so period perfect that it is sometimes difficult to tell whether they are original antiques or reproduction.
She first became obsessed with re-creating period dresses after watching the Kirsten Dunst movie, ‘The Duchess,’ when she was only 15 years old. She was captivated by the intricate designs and lush fabrics in the film and adored the way that the dresses and corsets accentuated the female figure, while instantly flattering. As she was living in a village at the time, with a lot of free time and no internet, she set about learning how to sew and a love of dressmaking was born.
Yet it isn’t only the rococo era that Milianda is passionate about; she has a particular affinity with the dramatic fashions of the Victorian era also. This is due to their use of bustles, corsets and crinolines which produced those exaggerated shapes, which look so amazing when ladies are dancing elegantly across a ballroom floor.
Although she makes all of her dresses herself, for practical reasons of course, she cannot wear them every single day. Modern living and working is not designed to allow women to wear fashions like these anymore – regrettably! Imagine for example, somebody trying to squeeze onto an office chair in a crinoline, or to bend to pick of a child from the floor wearing a particularly tight laced corset…possible I suppose but quite difficult to get the hang of! Therefore, when she is not wearing her period pieces, she is to be found wearing Lolita style fashions, which can also be quite eccentric: frills, buffs and laces all feature quite heavily! The period costumes are mostly for photoshoots, events and re-enactments. Previously, glasses have never been part of her look, she added: “I was never happy wearing glasses, because they made me look boring and blended into crowd. I love Retropeepers collection looks of the best vintage style features.”
Obviously, dressing in such a dramatic style attracts a fair bit of interest and people often ask Duchess Milianda for pictures, with many commenting on how fantastic she looks. However, as Lolita is also quite a unique style, she is often asked for pictures when she is dressed in her normal clothing, so it is something she has got used to, she said, “I feel lucky to get so many compliments.”
It is not only the Duchess’ clothing which wows and dazzles, her house is also as period as it possibly can be. It does however, not stick strictly to the rococo era and instead is decorated in a more eclectic style ranging from all of the 19th and 20th centuries and the empire eras in French style. This mixmatch of styles creates a rich carving and amalgamation of many historical styles giving it a bespoke and unique look.
Duchess Milianda wears Retropeepers Betty and Eva cat eye frames. Follow here here https://www.instagram.com/duchess.milianda