The Fashion Magpie Evening Wear

Evening Out.

When I was little, I thought my mother was most beautiful when she was on her way out for an evening.  I loved the cloud of perfume that followed her out the door, dabbed artfully on her wrists and neck.  I loved the high heels, the silks, the furs — so sumptuous compared to her more practical day-to-day wardrobe.  I loved the swipe of lipstick, the more dramatic eye shadow, the spritz of Aquanet, the special-ness of the occasion that these details heralded.  I even loved the feeling of excitement — of rush, of hurry — in the air as she and my father descended quickly, with purpose, down the stairs, my father buttoning his mother of pearl cuff links or straightening his tie in the front hallway mirror, my mother fidgeting with the clasp of her necklace or dabbing her lips for excess lipstick, bursts of conversation punctuating their finishing touches: “…take Connecticut all the way through The Circle?”; “…Chris and Trish will be there –“; “do you think it’s too warm for my fur?”  And then, always, a quick kiss goodbye from my mother, final instructions to the nanny, and out the door they went.

I’ve wondered, occasionally, about whether minimagpie will remember similar things about me: the perfume I wear at evening time (right now, Tom Ford), the heels I retrieve for special occasions (I finally pulled the trigger on these after all the hubbub I made over the other velvet shoes I’d snagged), the music we put on (Madeleine Peyroux or Frank Sinatra are currently heavily on repeat in the evenings), the glass of wine I enjoy while doing so.  These trivial details of our life together: what will she dial in on?  What will she remember?

One of my friends recently passed along an invite to an event at The Yale Club in NYC and it left me daydreaming about an evening out and all the gorgeous goodies to consider for just such an occasion — even though I’ve already talked about holiday dressing options…just click the images below to be taken to details.  I will point out that these sparkly tootsies are on sale for under $100 with code FRIENDS40, how epic are the bows on this chic evening dress?, and — not shown below — this would make such a fun evening dress!

P.S.  I wrote, much more eloquently, and at greater length, about some aha moments I had as a child waiting for my parents on just such an evening out.  Incidentally, it’s one of my favorite posts I’ve ever written.

P.P.S.  If you’re still on the hunt for a dress to wear to festive occasions: also consider this lacy number (a dead ringer for a Self-Portrait piece!) or this stunning Cinq A Sept!  Also love it in the blush velvet.



  1. Love these picks! The Polly Plume bow flats are toooo good. I need them!

    I love that red lace dress, too. I finally settled on (i.e. found) a dress for a winter wedding I have coming up, and it’s kind of similar, but in indigo lace. Now I’m just deciding if I can swing open-toe shoes in January in Dallas!

    1. RE: Open-toe shoes — I always make exceptions for them at weddings. I feel like you can always get away with an open toe shoe at a wedding, regardless of season. Maybe I’m wrong? I mean, it needs to go with the dress, of course, but…

      I’m new to Polly Plume, but if those shoes are any indication of their styling, I’m a new convert!

  2. I can’t seem to get the image to link to the website, dying to know where to find the white off the shoulder with black grosgrain. LOVE your selections and the images brought such nostalgia of watching my parents leave for nights on the town. I can’t tell you how many times I remember my mom asking if it was too warm for her fur haha!

  3. I share the same fond memories of my parents’ nights on the town and always hoped to be as glamourous as my mother. I’d love sitting at her vanity table afterwards. (PS.-that hueb ring, oh my!)

    1. Ah! Sitting at the vanity! My mom didn’t have one, but I have sort of transposed one into my memory of these moments, because it seems like just the right kind of thing to be in them. THAT RING!!!

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