The Fashion Magpie Currently

Currently…[January Edition.]

I shared some real-life snapshots on what I was wearing/eating/listening to/reading/etc both in May and October of last year and it was a lovely traipse down memory lane to reread them.  The May one left me in a transitory nostalgic fog, as it had been written while I was still breastfeeding mini and still living in our cherished Chicago home, oblivious to upcoming uprootings and re-plantings.  But just as quickly as the emotional clouds gathered, they dissipated, as I found myself turning to my highly serviceable 2018 mantra: “Go boldly.”

Currently Wearing…

Truthfully, I’m currently wearing Monrow sweats as ride out this sinus infection.  But most days I have been wearing a pair of distressed J. Crew jeans, this sweater (my absolute favorite right now — so, so warm and now on sale for under $40), and either snowboots or, if it’s warm enough, my Golden Goose sneakers.  I hate these dead months of winter, where it’s sweaters on repeat for weeks on end.  It reminds me of Chicago winters, which stretch, impossibly, from September until June.  That said, I’m heading to a dinner this week wearing this adorable statement top I found on sale for only $118!  I like the idea of showing a little shoulder in winter.  And those SLEEVES.  The picture doesn’t do them justice — they are maj volume.   (Should I also buy it in the denim?!)

Currently Playing…

Live from Las Vegas by Dean Martin.  It’s not the Dean Martin you’re thinking of — it’s full of soulful songs and hymns and Mr. Magpie and I couldn’t believe it was him.  Wonderful dining and postprandial listening.

For daytime, I’ve been enjoying Sam Smith’s new album and my OG chill music from my student days: Chopin’s nocturnes performed by Arthur Rubenstein.  I studied piano until I was in my teens, and dynamics are everything with Chopin; Rubenstein happens to be masterful at them.

Finally, we’ve been listening to a lot of top 40 in our apartment — while cooped up and under the weather, we needed something lively.  I am very into The Weekend by SZA today — she sounds like a mash-up of Justin Beiber and Chris Brown.

Currently Eating…

Most days I have an English muffin with Plugra butter (and occasionally a heap of zaatar) and fruit (this week, we’ve diced up a pineapple) for breakfast along with pourover coffee.  We’ve been using beans from Toby Estate, which is based in Brooklyn.

Lunch is usually a mad scramble for whatever I can cobble together in the fridge — today, it was a leftover rice bowl from Jin Ramen with teriyaki chicken, broccoli, and carrots, but my fallback is toasted rye bread with avocado, Swiss cheese, and Trader Joe’s everything bagel seasoning.  I’ve gotten into a bad habit of buying mini cans of Coke Zero Sugar, and one of those will often accompany lunch.  When I’m not being naughty, I’ll try to drink a full glass of water with my lunch.

For dinner, it’s always an adventure.  Mr. Magpie fried chicken and made incredible baking powder biscuits for the Golden Globes, so we’ve had that the last two nights.  (Did you watch?  Such a somber ceremony, but powerful.  Oprah’s speech was everything, and I could not love the cast of Big Little Lies more.  Such a prescient show for the year, between the strong female cast and the probing analysis of abuse, rape, and gender dynamics!)  At any rate: fried chicken.  Mr. Magpie used a combination of this recipe and this one to create perfectly moist chicken with the crispiest skin.  Yum.  Tonight we’re making a penne puttanesca dish from his boi Tony Mantuano.

P.S. I recently made gougeres (for NYE), and this recipe is perfect — it yielded the best batch I’ve ever made, and they are the perfect companion to a glass of champagne.

Currently Watching…

The Bachelor (smeh), The Crown (we’re behind), and Veep.  We’re usually borderline omniverous when it comes to new movie releases on iTunes, but we’ve been totally bored by the options coming out over the past few months.  The best recent movie we saw was Wind River.  UNBELIEVABLE but not for the faint of heart — there is an exceptionally troubling scene in there that we could hardly watch.  We liked Dunkirk, but my usual litmus test for movie quality is whether or not I am still thinking about the movie the next morning.  Dunkirk was in and out of my mind within minutes.  It was an interesting take on a war movie — de-centralized, less of a central plot, an off-kilter denouement — which I take to reflect the actual experience of war a bit better than the usual hero narrative we’ve grown accustomed to in the cinema.   But, at the end of the day, underwhelming.

We haven’t been to the theater in…maybe a year?  But we’re going with our best friends to see I, Tanya on Monday and I cannot wait.  I’m equally excited about the popcorn.

Currently Reading…

The Grant autobiography, which has little morsels of wisdom and intrigue nestled among long, soporific stretches of military history.  I’m alternating between that and Watch Me Disappear, which is not grabbing me as much as I’d hoped, but is passable fare while waiting for my nails to dry at the salon or passing the time in the doctor’s waiting room.

Currently Burning…

This candle.  So fresh and clean.

Currently Coveting…

+This soak — it sounds like heaven right now while I’m so miserably congested.

+This statement blouse (under $50)!

+This and this for my kindle, both recommendations from Magpie readers!

+This bamboo flatware.

+This floss gets ridiculous reviews — I must check it out!  I’ve never been so excited about dental hygiene!

+A makeup artist used this loose reflective powder on me recently and I died over it.

Currently Loving…

+The enormous gallery wall (shown at the top of this post!) Mr. Magpie hung this past weekend over our couch.  Now that we’ve ordered our media console (in white!) and hung this wall of paintings, the room is inching towards completion!

+Going to bed early (around 8:30), reading, and then watching an episode or two of Veep.

+Ironing my sheets with our new fancy iron and ironing board.  Our nanny very generously does our laundry for us while mini is napping, and one day, I found her ironing our sheets.  It’s a love/hate discovery because now that I’ve seen the light, I don’t know that I can go back to un-ironed sheets again, and they are a ROYAL PAIN to iron.  I know because I spent the better part of Sunday afternoon trying to iron my duvet, sheets, and all the pillowcases, and it was a slog.  But getting into your freshly-ironed, freshly-pressed sheets?  The ultimate in luxury.

+Zaatar.  I mentioned that we’ve been putting it on English muffins in the morning, but I also put it on popcorn and swirl it into hummus.  If you’re not familiar with it, you are in for a treat.  It’s a Mediterranean spice blend heavy on sesame and sumac; you can order some through Prime if you can’t find it at your grocery.

+My new scent for the year.

+Making mini laugh.  The motions, voices, and mimographies I perform on a daily basis for a chuckle are outrageous.  To the neighbor across the courtyard: I’m sorry if you see me huffing around like a gorilla, stomping my legs through the apartment.  All in the name of my baby’s laughter.

+The way Central Park looks in the snow.

+My daily calls with my mom.

P.S.  ICYMI — the best beauty products on the planet.

P.P.S.  My favorite gear for small apartments.


  1. Feeling you on the long slog of sweater-wearing months, The Weekend by SZA (love her!), and loving the sound of Cocofloss! Gotta try it. I love that Caroline Constas top as well — a much-needed breath of spring air during this chilly month!

  2. Baby laughter is the best! I too do ridiculous things to get mine to giggle, and it’s so adorable when she does.

    Love your gallery wall! Hanging items is always the last step for us.. we’re slowly getting there though!

    1. Thanks! Yes, hanging pictures is legitimately Mr. Magpie’s LEAST FAVORITE ACTIVITY ON THE PLANET. He has dragged his feet for weeks on this but I finally cornered him into it and I’m so glad! Now we just have the artwork in our bedroom and around my “office” nook…

  3. I appreciate your take on it! Definitely makes me think I may have missed some themes and subtleties while I was bristling at the idea of a white male savior. Perhaps a rewatch is in order!

    1. And vice versa! You raised some seriously good points / problems that I’d not thought about! xoxo

  4. What biscuit recipe did Mr. Magpie use?? I’ve had minimal success making biscuits previously but after doing a recipe analysis I think I need to try one with more baking soda (2 T vs 2t).

    I also made gougeres for NYE and I can’t believe I’ve lived without them. We used the Nasa (aka ATK) recipe but substituted with brie. Absolutely divine!

    1. Hi Taylor! I agree, baking powder biscuits can be super hard to nail. If there’s too much baking powder, it has a sort of bitter/astringent quality to it that is no bueno. He used a really interesting recipe he found on Panna Cooking — the interesting bit is that the chef actually rolled out the dough (unheard of) and folded it back onto itself in thirds SEVEN times. The result was a super flakey, layered biscuit that was outrageously good, though very salty to be fair. I also think that the recipe in Garden and Gun is incredible. xoxo

  5. Love your gallery wall! Re: Wind River: I also generally enjoyed the movie, but all I could think from the start was how much better it would have been if Jeremy Renner’s character had instead been a badass Native woman! I also wished Elizabeth Olsen’s character had spent less time talking about how she didn’t know how to do her own job and asking a man to explain it to her…

    1. VERY good points. I do think that Jeremy’s status as both “outsider” and “insider” added an important narrative layer to things — in some ways, the entire film was about identity, cultural belonging, familial belonging, etc. The fact that he and the other Native American father experienced these twin griefs across ethnicities but in a landscape that was so desolate and so distinctly Native American was — I thought — thought-provoking. Related: I felt as though the entire movie was a series of “land grabs” — i.e., does this case “belong” to FBI? Does it “belong” to local law enforcement? Why is this “park ranger guy” getting involved with a case outside his jurisdiction? And those “land grabs” bear obvious symmetry to the forced removal of Native Americans to reservations. It brought attention to the tension between Jeremy being a white outsider but being intimately connected to the Native American community in which he lived.

      STILL. Point well taken in that, at the end of the day, the movie presented a white male and a white female as heroes in a movie predominantly about Native Americans.

  6. Ahhhh ironing a duvet = the WORST! Such a pain that I can’t even think about ironing my sheets. But I bet it’s divine 🙂 Dunkirk – I liked it! But I agree…doesn’t leave you thinking afterward. I also somehow got sucked into watching The Bachelor…I hate myself for it ,though. I needed some good music ideas for playing while putzing around my apartment (yes, putzing – it sounds a little lazier than I mean it, though) – I’ll check those out on Spotify!

    1. Yes! Let me know if you come across any other fresh albums or channels to listen to.

      And double yes to the duvet ironing!! So tedious but also SO luxurious 🙂

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