La Creme de la Creme

At the dawn of 2011, I have a lot to be thankful for — so many exciting developments in 2010!  First and foremost, I married the love of my life.  The subsequent months were (and continue to be) nothing short of ecstatic — pure happiness!  Love you, Mr. Magpie.  Second, I launched this little blog and have been so moved and inspired by the generous reception it’s enjoyed (thank you, readers!)  I’m looking forward to an even more fashion-packed year of bloggery in 2011.  (Check out my new features on DC-wide blog, WeLoveDC, look forward to some interesting guest posts and exciting giveaways and — as always — send me your ideas!)  And, finally, I was promoted to a managerial position after a year of hard work and fruitful collaboration.  All around, not too shabby a year.  But rather than wax poetic about personal milestones, I’ll  instead feature some of my favorite 2010 “Magpie Musts” — those “creme de la creme” items that have truly made this year a good one.  You’ll recognize some — but not all — of these items from earlier posts.  Without further adieu, the creme de la creme of 2010!

1. The Camel Toggle Coat

This fall, I wore my camel-colored toggle coat just about every single day.  I loved pairing it with my go-to Paige skinnies, Loeffler Randall wedge boots, and anything plaid {button-downs, scarves, etc}.  It felt just right for the season.

{Fidelity Duffle Coat, $245, Steven Alan}

Fashion blogger Cherry Blossom Girl shared my sentiments exactly, and was frequently photographed in her own variation (her topper was by Parisian designer Sandro):

2. BRIGHTS

When I first started blogging back in spring 2010, I was in love with neon.  It felt fresh.  Midway through the year, the palette changed a bit, and I shelved my hot pink printed blouses for eye-catching accents in saturated blues and vibrant poppy reds.  Happily, the pop-of-red trend has been a mainstay in the latest Spring 2011 collections, so it looks like BRIGHTS are here to stay.


{1.  Lizzie Fortunato Flower necklace, $255, Chance; 2. Isharya cluster earrings, $105, Pret-A-Beaute; 3. Virginia Johnson turtle scarf, $195, Virginia Johnson; 4.  Essie Clambake nail lacquer, $8, EssieShop; 5. Hayden Harnett Havana hobo, $498, InStilo; 6. H&M Jacket (available in stores); 7.  Pretty Ballerinas Marilyn flat, about $144, Pretty Ballerinas}

3. iPad

Apple products just gets cooler and cooler.  I still marvel over the fact that, on a random rainy Saturday afternoon, I can decide I want to read “that new book I heard about,” download it in iBooks, and be reading it without moving an inch.  And all in the space of 30 seconds!

{iPad — $499 and up, Apple; monogrammed iPad case — $112, Graphic Image}

4.  Leopard Love

My, my.  Was leopard ever big this year.  I managed to snap up two pairs of leopard print shoes (these flats from Ann Taylor — which I wore constantly, and these wedges, which I’ve worn twice — shame on me!), and yet I’d still kill for these classic cap-toed YSL flats:

Speaking of YSL, this gauzey YSL scarf ($560, Net-A-Porter) inspired me to pull a similar style out of retirement (i.e. exile to the back of the closet), and I wore it constantly, and with everything.

When I wasn’t wearing leopard around the neck or at the toe, I even went so far as to buy a little leopard-print silken blouson-style dress (by Parker), though what I really wanted was this boxy-cut, 80s-esque See by Chloe number (on sale for $273, Net-A-Porter), which I would have updated with my glossy black Louboutins and a major black statement necklace.

And though I didn’t get quite this far, I even contemplated splurging on this Tory Burch rabbit fur print coat (on sale for $870, Net-A-Porter):

Fierce year for this little lady.

5.  Tocca Home Fragrance

Would it be over-the-top to say I couldn’t live without my Tocca candles ($36 apiece, Sephora)?  I absolutely love and live in the “Florence” scent — it perfumes my whole apartment.  Must.

6.  Glossy Gold Accents

I’ve been all about polished gold add-ons this year — there’s just something classy and refined about the look.  I’ve been taking notes from Olivia Palermo, who has this look down pat.  {Check out the “Olivia, I Love Ya” post for more Olivia-inspired styling.}

I like these gilded accessories paired with just about anything under the sun, but there’s something especially fetching about pairing them with classic upscale Americana sportswear like navy blazers, white jeans, crisp oxfords, and loafers.  Imagine how chic you’d look pairing them with any of the finds below:

{Clockwise from top left: Freelook Watch, $200, Amazon; geo disc studs, $75, JennyBird; t-strap sandals, $259, Pret-A-Beaute; bouquet collar necklace, $200, Emily Elizabeth Jewelry; sculptural cuff, $295, Charm and Chain}

7.  The Daytime Clutch

Clutches have been an evening wear staple forever, but over the past few seasons, they’ve come to frequent chic daytime wardrobes as well.  I like the idea of an oversized, rich-leather clutch in a somewhat utilitarian, frill-less style paired with a blazer and killer pumps or jeans and a chunky knit.  This See by Clare Vivier in supple cognac ($139, See by Clare Vivier) or this boxy Radley style in rich green (perfect for accenting a navy blazer! — on sale for $140, John Lewis) would be perfect:

For my workaday life — I wear a.lot of black, so this tassel-accented turnlock clutch could be a perfect workday staple ($44, TopShop):

Alternately, elevate the clutch to the center of attention with this uh.may.zing leopard style (Hunting Season, $1,350, Intermix):

Love.

8.  Uber-High Heels

So this Magpie Must runs somewhat contrary to recent trends on the runways, where we’ve seen kitten heels and the so-called “elevator espadrille” (aka “flatform”) assume a higher (er…lower?) profile.    But I can’t help it: I’ve been looking for ever higher heels, especially with the advent of the platform’s popularity the past coupla years.  I’m petite.  I need the height.  End of story.

Do you not d.i.e. over these t-strap Brian Atwoods ($580, Intermix)?!  6″ high.  Will break your ankle.  A must have.  I bought my first pair of YSL heels this year (a pair of delightful greige suede sandals — kind of like these, but not as terrifying/tranny-esque; mine feature a sculpted heel and a mildly more modest platform), and they pretty much make me cry in equal parts pain and pleasure whenever I slip them on.  (Way too high, way too hot.)  Same story with these puppies (120 mm!) — you know I die over the Louboutins ($595, Net-A-Porter):

Or these (less expensive, equally as fashion-forward — $90, Zara):

9.  Suede Anything…and Everything

I’ve been all about styling in contrasts this year — color complementing, proportion play, and so forth can lend any look a sense of depth and fashion know-how.  But I’ve been particularly keen on texture contrasts, and one of my go-to fabrics has been suede.  I’m in.love. with the suede pump in particular (I own a pair in rich chocolate that I die over, but these gray Charles Davids — $114, Lori’s Shoes — and these fuschia Louboutins — $695, Net-A-Porter are swoonworthy):

Or how about a slick oversized daytime clutch in pop-of-reddish-pink ($80, TopShop)?

Or one of up-and-coming designer Tila March’s confections, like this sleek little cross-body bag in die over it gray (about $570, Tila March)?

Oh suede.  Love.

10.  Red Nails.

Not so much a fad for 2010 — once a red gal, always a red gal.  I’ve been getting my weekly manicures at Vicky’s in Georgetown (1616 Wisconsin Ave NW) for several years now.  (I’m such a regular, when I missed a couple of weeks worth of manis earlier this year due to a frenetic work schedule, they actually hugged me when I came in and said that they’d been worried I was sick.  Now that is customer service.)  Sometimes I veer into the coral-orange hues (ADORE Essie’s “Geranium“), other times the deeper wine reds (LOVE Essie’s “Tiney Winey“), but it’s always in the red family, and it’s always from Essie.

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