The Fashion Magpie Ganni Horse Dress Aspen Style

Aspen Vibes.

In the wake of my accident earlier this week, I indulged in some retail therapy.  I first snagged this horse-print dress (shown above on the uber chic model Camille Charriere) from hip label Ganni, which I had been eyeing for several months.  (It’s selling out fast — I kept refreshing the pages of Farfetch, Shopbop, and Net-A-Porter until the last size 34 appeared on Shopbop, but I keep seeing a few pop up here and there.  It’s least expensive here, but in limited sizes.  Separately, I had always been leery of Farfetch — the site feels…weird?  But I ordered my Golden Goose sneaks from there and was super impressed with the experience.  Fast, inexpensive international shipping; they showed up within two days of ordering!)  Anyway, I love the whimsical print, sort of a nod to the prairie chic trend I wrote about over the summer.  I’m going to complete the look with a low brown suede boot like this.  #DowntownBohoJen.

Then I found myself ordering this dramatic fair isle sweater dress, which I had also been eyeing for quite some time, and which I found for under $100 thanks to a L&T coupon code (enter FRIENDS at checkout).  I like the idea of pairing this with a more stately black suede pump for a dinner out.  From there, I ordered this J. Crew buffalo plaid shirt-jacket.  I like this kind of boxy masculine style layered under a fur vest with some arm candy and dark skinnies (or winter white jeans!) and boots for errand days.

As I surveyed my bounty, I realized I had just begun to assemble a picture-perfect wardrobe for a ski trip to Aspen.  Aspen is probably my favorite place on earth, second to San Sebastian, Spain, where Mr. Magpie and I vacationed a few years ago and, in a cava-and-foie-gras-induced ecstasy, seriously contemplated going rogue by moving abroad, buying a flat in the Basque Country, and doing something food-related for the rest of our lives.  But Aspen…!  I spent my childhood summers there.  My parents rented a condo for the entire month of July most years and we would pass our time hiking, swimming, horseback riding, wading through crystal-clear streams, and taking in the sophisticated charms of Aspen.  Then, two years ago, my parents took us all back, and it was heaven, again.  There is something about the rustle of wind in the Aspen trees and the coolness of the air and the purity of the landscape that is borderline transcendental.  I took many walks — solitary and with sisters — along a footpath close to the condo we stayed in where I felt a kind of spiritual calm I’d not felt in years.  The vista, the air, the languid pace of life: Aspen is medicinal.  And maybe this is why I was feeling a draw towards its purple mountained majesty this week of all weeks.

I contemplated doing something insane — booking a weekend getaway to Aspen for the family.  But then the reality of a scheduled December sank in, and so I returned to my senses.  But not without daydreaming about what a complete wardrobe for such an escapade might entail.  Below, some of my favorite Aspen-inspired finds:

+This chunky knit sweater.  I love its unexpected 80s-vibes length.  (Kim Basinger, can ya hear me?)  I deeply appreciate its styling on the site — I kind of want to wear it over a slip dress with snakeskin boots, too.  Tres chic.  Alternately, we can go more approachable with a pair of winter white jeans (or dark wash denim!) and some powerhouse booties (these are refined; these are a chunky but on-trend).

+Love the look of the fur-trimmed hiker boot these days — I love these in the black, these in the gray, or — budget buy! — these in the white, which I’ve actually seen on a number of bloggers to great effect.  Super chic for the price!

+If you’re looking for *actual* hiking boots because you will *actually* be hiking, please do not wear any of the styles above.  These Danner boots are the ultimate.  (Love the rich leather and striking red laces!)

+For layering over EVERYTHING: this epic vest.  I die over the details: the color, the side tie.  So incredibly chic.  I love it over this cashmere henley (dreamy) or this inexpensive thermal tee (which I own in multiples — the perfect layering basic!  No tag so also very comfortable for sleep).

+You’ve got to have a roundup of splashy sweaters for the occasion.  I love this Aztecan style (chic with black leggings << people go nuts over these), this Gucci vibes style, this puff-sleeved beauty, this pastel fair-isle (<<on sale!, but also swooning over this), this 70s-esque puff-sleeved style (under $80!), and this waffle knit cashmere.  I also think this cheeky/retro sweater would nail just the right vibe in Aspen, where fashion risks are encouraged and you’ll find a generally playful attitude — as would this very on-trend Lingua Franca.

+Very into the look of a ribbed cashmere beanie this season, especially in a pastel.  Jenny Walton bought this one in blue ($30! << good Christmas gift for a white elephant exchange!), I bought this one in lilac, and I’m also loving this style in all colors with coordinating mittens.

+If you’re actually skiing — or even if you’re not, come to think of it — these snow boots are the ultimate in ski bunny cuteness.  I like them in white or the periwinkle blue color.

+For functional outerwear, you can’t beat Canada Goose’s parkasNorth Face Minna mittens (they are fleece-lined!), and Sorel Joan of Arc boots — I’ve written about all three extensively and feel they are the absolute best for braving the elements and staying warm while looking cute.  (This from a gal who braved almost five Chicago winters, which typically stretched from October to May — sometimes June — and once reached a bone-shivering low of negative 35 with wind chill.  Negative 35.  NEGATIVE THIRTY FIVE.  Holy coldness.)   Also, you need a lot of Smartwools and some hand-warmers, too.

+For lighter-weight outerwear, loving this belted puffer, this cropped quilted jacket, and this fun metallic bomber.  Of course, I still dream about Acne’s Velocite jacket (swoon — get the look for less with this), but how good is this season’s Zimmermann?!

+I’d want to wear these fur-trim mules all around the house…or, more likely, my go-to fluffy cloud slippers (<<just found them on Prime!).

P.S.  This post brought me right back to those languid days of lilac summer.

P.P.S.  Musings on being a fish out of water and a prelude to love.

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