The word for an ornament that one fastens to clothing, either for decorative purposes or as a clasp, is spilla in Italian. It translates as either brooch or pin in English.
Being a feminine noun, it takes the following definite and indefinite articles:
Some different kinds of spille you might encounter include:
- spilla d’oro = gold brooch
- spilla d’argento = silver brooch
- spilla di diamanti = diamond brooch
- spilla da cravatta = tie pin
- spilla da foulard = scarf pin
Non trovo più la spilla che mi aveva regalato la nonna. Spero di non averla persa!
I can’t find the brooch my grandmother gave me. I hope I didn’t lose it.
A spilla di sicurezza (otherwise known as a spilla da balia, literally “the nanny’s pin”) is the word for a safety pin in Italian. In this particular expression, spilla is sometimes replaced by its masculine counterpart spillo, which is the word for a sewing pin or thumbtack.
High heels are referred to as tacchi a spillo because the long heel is reminiscent of a pin.
The augmentative spillone, on the other hand, is the word for a hat pin.