When we launched LaDoubleJ Editions with Mantero back in September, it was a bit of a lark: we thought, let’s jump into the archives of the historic Como-based silk manufacturer Mantero, snap up some great vintage patterns, whip up a few new dresses with local Italian tailors to sell with the rest of our vintage loot. Then came the feedback: do you have a short version? Do you have a long-sleeve version? Do you have other patterns? The requests abounded, and we have obliged with 3 styles for you and a total of 11 vintage prints. The cool thing about all of these dresses is that they work from 8am until midnight, for work, weekends, breakfast, cocktails, summertime, and right on through the winter. These are anytime, anywhere dresses. Here, Viviana and I show you just how versatile they really are: dress them up, dress them down, layer them, or leave them plain, but whatever you do, grab a happy pattern because they’re guaranteed to cheer you – and your closet – up.

BOSCO print: JJ and Viviana both wear the Gospel dress

JJ- This outfit was meant to show how to mix up the prints. I’ve actually got three different black and white patterns going on.

VV- The Bosco woods scene mixed with stripes and checks: That outfit is a 10. You’d get an A+ in the magazine world brava!

JJ- The good thing is that you can wear a tight sweater over the dress and the sleeves peek out just a bit.

VV- You can go the office like that, then strip off the sweater to go out after work.

JJ- You can too.

VV- Yes, but I wore my Saint Laurent shirt under the dress. The idea is that you can wear something over or under it – either way. I actually like silk under silk.

JJ- The more silk in your life, the better and sexier you’ll be. Plus it’s warm.


NINFEA print: JJ wears the Gospel dress and Viviana wears the Twist

VV- This is my favorite print in the short dress. You can wear it with little white socks and loafers. It’s very bourgeois, very sweet. You, on the other hand, look very downtown.

JJ- I feel like a gas station attendant – but that has to do with my funny patch vintage jacket, not the dress!

VV- You don’t feel like a rapper?

JJ- God no. Anyway, the point here is to show that the dress can be very casual. This is good for pumping gas and running around town in silver Prada tennis shoes.

MINIMALE print: Viviana and JJ both wear the Swing version of the Minimale

JJ- So this is what I’d do to wear the dress for a nighttime event – just throw on a fancy coat and some chic kitten heels.

VV- You look very evening chic. Very Prada. Miuccia would approve.

JJ- Really? You just made my day. The good thing about these prints is that they can be super dressy or super dressed down. You, for example, look like you’re going camping.

VV- Yes. I’m wearing the outfit for the closing party of the camping season. The dance party. They do that, right? I’ve never been and would never go.

JJ- I hate camping too. I have no idea what the closing party looks like.

VV- But if we had to go camping, I’d dress like this.

APEROL print: Viviana wears the Twist dress and JJ wears the Swing

JJ- You look ready to party in that short dress. I’ve never seen you so cute.

VV- All you need are two accessories and this dress becomes the BOMB: one – the shoe of the season (by Gucci) and two – our scarf tied in a big bow around the neck.

JJ- I thought you hated heels with the dresses.

VV- The short dress can be worn with a heel, but the long ones – nope, not in my book. Meanwhile I love you wearing a denim jacket.

JJ- It’s yours – I don’t own any denim. But it’s kind of fun with this dress. I do however regret my choice of shoes. Patent leather doesn’t work with denim.

VV- You would know that if you wore denim more often.

PESCOLINI print: JJ and Viviana both wear the Swing version

VV- Amore!


VV- This is one of the cutest print ever – and it’s from the 1940s!

JJ- It seems like daywear but I dressed it up by putting a brocade shirt over it.

VV- And then you have the headband because you’re going to off to meditate.

JJ- Totally. And you, where are you going?

VV- California. Puglia, where I’m from, is the California of Italy. You and I are basically from the same place. So you wear it in LA and I’ll wear it in Puglia.

JJ- Ok, perfect. I’m bringing it in for my next trip.

VV- Maybe I’ll come too and we’ll meet surfers. It’s the right look. They’ll fall in love with us subito.

TULIPANI print: Viviana wears the Swing dress and JJ wears the Gospel

JJ- We’re both very sporty here.

VV- Yes, but I’m summer and you’re winter.

JJ- I love mixing light silks with heavy winter wools. Plus I could not resist this pattern mixing – the summery floral with the heavy boxy plaid of the coat.

VV- I’m Maradona!

JJ- Who is that?

VV- He’s a soccer champion!!!! He’s one of the most famous players in the world. JJ- Never heard of him

VV- Pele?

JJ- Barely. But he’s from the 1960s. He’s vintage.

VV- Maradona was from the 80s.

JJ- I hate everything about that era.

VV- The point is that you can even play soccer in this dress. It’s for a weekend with the kids on the grass. Can I repeat my flat shoe rule please?


SFERE print: Viviana and JJ both wear the Swing version of the Sfere

VV- This is our most design-oriented print.

JJ- All of our furniture designer and architect friends bought one. Seriously!

VV- I wore mine with a crew neck sweater. The sweater over a long dress looks great.

JJ- Totally. But as usual, I kind of went overboard on the pattern.

VV- You look like a chess board.

JJ- But in a good way, right? I feel like a mink checkerboard calls for big silk circles. I’ve decided this is my new winter look when I’m visiting an architectural studio.

BANDANA print: Viviana and JJ both wear the Twist dress in Bandana

VV- This is the easiest print to wear, plus bandana prints are a huge trend right now.

JJ- Which is funny because the print comes from the 1970s…

VV- This is my absolute favorite look because I have a bandana scarf on a bandana dress with a bandana headband.

JJ- You really love bandanas.

VV- So much!!! It’s the best accessory to complete your look. I find it very cool.

JJ- You wear your red bandana necklace all the time.

VV- I’ve worn it every day since July 29, 2015. A pirate gave it to me. The bandana really gives you the perfect pirate look.

JJ- What pirate??!! And you look nothing like a pirate. I look like a blue blood school girl gone wild after exams.

VV- Yep in black and blue; good call, that’s a top color combo.

MARGHERITA print: JJ and Viviana both wear the Swing version of Margherita

JJ- This is another outfit example of pattern gone wild, this time with layers. I have on a sweater vest and a coat over the dress. There are daisies on the coat, and small daisies in the 1960s print of the dress.

VV- We’re both dressed for a concert.

JJ- Really?

VV- Yes. I‘m standing in front of the lead singer and you’re backstage in the VIP room.

JJ- I think you’re at Coachella and I’m going to an Easter lunch in Tuscany. In any case, the point is that you can layer these dresses as much as you want and be ready for any situation coming your way. They are divinely versatile!

CONFETTI print: JJ is in the Swing dress, Viviana is in the Gospel version

JJ- You can make the short-sleeved one cozy and warm by layering a wool turtleneck underneath.

VV- It’s super cute. Very cena con i suoceri (dinner with the in-laws). But I also like this idea of having the sweater over the long-sleeved dress so you can see the sleeve peeking out. And the stripes on the outside. I’m very Harry Potter.

JJ- With those glasses and that Gucci sweater, you definitely are. Meanwhile, we’re both in flats. I’ve been living in these Gianvito Rossi shoes.

VV- High heels are prohibited with these dresses!!!! I hate them.

JJ- Flats look better but sometimes a heel works.

VV- Ok fine, 85% of the time, girls – FLATS!

FLORA MARINA print: JJ and Viviana both wear the Swing dress

JJ- Truth be told, I have never met a print that I did not want to mix with another print. This is some bonkers, brand new Marni with our bonkers Mantero print from the 1950s.

VV- Your outfit is SO you. This is a classic example of the JJ mood. It should be your pantone color.

JJ- It’s so crazy that it kind of works. The trick is keeping the colors somewhat tied together.

VV- I’m a bit more Wall Street. The idea is show that you could even wear this dress to a boring office, in finance or whatever.

JJ- I never imagined our dresses with a double-breasted Prince of Wales check jacket and classic tasseled loafers, but it looks good.

VV- Bankers and lawyers should call us if they want some sunshine in their offices.