New Routines

UPDATE ON 7/29: Sorry for my silence — but I have an exciting (eee!) offer to make up for it ūüôā¬† The amazingly generous folks over at Graphic Image are offering one lucky reader a free, PERSONALIZED (you know I love a monogram) weekly journal / datekeeper!¬† I have to gush about this because I purchased one last year (I picked the orange faux-croc covering with my initials in gold in the lower right hand corner) and absolutely cannot live without it.¬† (It also looks super chic.)¬† In order to win, please become a fan of TheFashionMagpie on Facebook and leave a comment below telling me what your favorite day of the year is.¬† {Mine: August 7.¬† My wedding anniversary.¬† Which is coming up in just a few little days!¬† WOO!}¬† A winner will be announced next Friday, August 5!¬† If you can’t wait to see if you’ve won or want to buy your own goodies from GraphicImage, use coupon code DATEBOOK to save 20% off your entire order.¬† Oh, and pleeeease with a cherry top like them on Facebook / follow them on Twitter.

Being organized is soooo hot right now.


I turned 27 nearly a month ago, and it was the first birthday that I genuinely resisted. ¬†It suddenly felt as though I wasn’t a spring chicken anymore — 27 sounds dangerously close to 30, i.e., teetering on the edge of what I would call “middle aged.” ¬†(Perhaps that’s inaccurate; I hope I’m not ruffling any feathers out there, but it just does.) ¬†21-23 were a blur of post-college exuberance; 24-26 were reserved for settling in and settling down; 27 is…middling. ¬†27 year olds talk about mortgages, discuss “lateral career moves” with the know-how of an industry insider, and occasionally contemplate a purchase from Talbots. ¬†I don’t want to think about what 30 entails at the moment, so we’ll leave it at that. ¬†Not one to be a Debbie Downer, however, I’ve quickly turned that frown upside down (in part because 27 year olds need to worry about the wrinkles that frowns leave on the face) but looking at this as an opportunity to make some new routines, shake up the old traditions, and embrace 27 full-on. ¬†Below, a list of “the new news” in my life:

1.  Beauty Regimen Overhaul

To begin with, I completely overhauled my beauty regimen, upgraded to some preventative products, and now actually look forward to washing my face in the morning.  (Weird, I know.)

First, I’ve thrown Proactiv to the curbside (I’d used it since high school and was terrified of abandoning it since I’ve had great skin for the last 15 years, but then I had an unpleasant customer service experience with them and decided I’d give it the boot…plus, it was never pretty to look at and it smelled weird) and invested in Laura Mercier’s oil-free foaming cleanser ($35, Laura Mercier), which I follow with perfecting water moisture mist ($38, Laura Mercier). ¬†The combo is nothing short of refreshing and perfecting in these humid summer months. ¬†The salesclerk at Blue Mercury was extremely convincing on the moisture mist, so I fell for it. ¬†She also insisted that I follow the misting with a serum, and after initially balking at the price, I test-drove a few different samples I’d received with another cosmetic purchase from Neiman Marcus (another perk of turning 27 — now it’s anti-aging this, wrinkle decreaser that), and fell with Clarins’ Bright Plus HP Intensive Brightening Serum ($69, Sephora):

Hello, new best friend. ¬†I layer it on top and then moisturize the eye area with Bobbi Brown’s eye cream ($45, Bobbi Brown) —

although my bestie gifted me this cooling eye roller by Clinique ($26, Sephora) and I keep it in my suitcase daily handbag, along with the other cosmetics I tote around on a daily basis in my makeup case ($24, Rubie Green), and I like to pop it out to quickly refresh myself along with a few of my favorite cheek stains by Tarte and Benefit (test drive three of my all-time Benefit favorites in this three-pack of minis — $15, Sephora):

And while I’ve long been a bright-red-nail gal and Essie enthusiast, I’ve also been revamping my mani routine with some new colors and new brands. ¬†I’ve been playing around with super-pale-pink (almost white) opaques, ¬†which look fantastic against a tan and really offset the ol’ blingeroo (I’ve been playing around with combinations of Essie’s Fiji, Limo-Scene, and Ballet Slippers), and SUPER brights from this awesome new line called Illamasqua (I like their hot pink “Collide,” their bright red “Alarm,” and their day-glo “Gamma” orange — $14/pop, Sephora):





2.  Talking Scents 

I’ve been a devotee of Tocca candles for some time (still love ’em, especially the Florence scent), but I recently made the mistake of testing the waters with Diptyque, an uber-expensive line of Parisian scents and candles that all the celebs “swear by.” ¬†Now I know why — the scents are just gorgeous. ¬†They’re most famous for the “Baies” scent ($28 for mini-candle; $68 for full candle, Diptyque), and it is lovely: full of rose and black currant scents. ¬†Pure sophistication.

Not sure which scent you like? ¬†This trio of their most popular scents, in miniature form, would be a great “starter kit” (or a lovely gift for a dear friend moving into a new apartment — $84, Diptyque):

However, I forewent the candles and instead invested in a room spray in the Baies scent ($60, Barney’s), and am obsessed with it for a few reasons: you can control the concentration of the scent (I find that 2 sprays around the bedroom is more than ample), you can spruce up your sheets with it (a little spritz as I make the bed in the morning), and you can use it to scent your laundry (a few minutes before the drying cycle is done, 2-3 sprays will leave your clothes lightly scented in the loveliest of ways). ¬†Obsessed.

3.   Running Me Ragged

I’ve been amping up my running routine, which is slightly odd given the phenomenal humidity and heat we’ve been experiencing here in the District. ¬†(Yesterday’s run at 7:30 a.m. left me feeling like I was running through jell-o.) ¬†However, some bright workout gear and a new playlist is enough to motivate me to get out there and (bra — $22, Champion)






I like to layer with feather-weight racerback tanks — I scored a bunch of awesome bright colors from J. Crew earlier this season, but they only have drab colors left, IMHO, but have also had good luck with Splendid’s style ($44 apiece, Splendid):

On my playlist ¬†(I run with my iPod shuffle — with it, since it clips right onto my waistband and is lightweight yet durable — $49, Apple)? ¬†Check it — note it’s a lil heavy on the rock this time around, inspired by a recent viewing of “The Fighter.” ¬†Obsessed with revisiting my Red Hot Chilli Peppers (loved them in the 90s — click to enlarge):

4.  Shelving Louis

I’ve been trying to give some of the shelved lovelies from my embarrassingly large handbag collection more time in the lime-light — for the last few years, I’ve been toting my Louis Vuitton Neverfull, which I love and adore because it fits EVERYTHING and pretty much goes with anything…and it reminds me that I completed my thesis on Ezra Pound. ¬†(The Neverfull was a gift to myself upon completion.) ¬†But lately I’ve been trying to showcase some of my closeted styles — even this Rebecca Minkoff cross-body style, which I was initially a little weary of wearing out, and that has never really seen the light of day:

I wore it in NYC last weekend while visiting my little sissy and kind of obsessed over it all weekend long. ¬†Hello, new companion. ¬†Get your own in this season’s cool color combo — taupe and flame red ($295, Rebecca Minkoff):

5.  Pack Rat

I’ve been trying to pack my lunch as much as possible the past few weeks — more control over what you’re eating, and way, way cheaper. ¬†{More $$ for clothes.} ¬†One thing that oddly makes lunch more fun to pack and eat is pretty packaging — enter Tili Bags ($7.49-$8.49 for a box), patterned Ziploc style baggies:

How darling?! ¬†I’d imagine that kids would love this sort of thing. ¬†Also great for packing liquids in suitcases with a little pizzazz. ¬†The same concept goes for carrying coffee to-go — Mr. Magpie brews mine every morning for me. ¬†I think one of these BRIGHT ikat-print thermoses ($15, SouthMoonUnder) would make it just a little more special:

You can pack it all in a BRIGHT “doggie bag” (insulated — $16, Scout):

6.  Organization Freak

If you’ve been reading Magpie for awhile, you know that I am obsessed with staying organized and compartmentalized. ¬†AND (drumroll) just discovered that GRAPHIC IMAGE is having a “Christmas in July” sale TODAY (July 20th) — all products are 50% off (!!!!) ¬†So obv I need to stock up on my organization tools — I’m already digging these personalizable pouches, which I’d use on trips for storing jewelry and then doubling as clutches ($48, on sale for $24):


A new iPad sleeve ($130, on sale for $65) would be a solid investment since I’m currently throwing mine in my handbag, uncovered, and hoping for the best…and, duh, I’d get it personalized as well:



I’m also inclined to snag a few gifts while the sale is going on — some of the items in their Bridal Collection are enticing for the many brides in my life. ¬†{A cute little monogrammed envelope for storing pictures/wedding mementos?! ¬†A bridal notebook?! ¬†Yes, yes, and yes.}

I’m sure that there will more NEW ROUTINES this year, but those are the top contenders. ¬†What new patterns are you starting in your life?!


  1. I left this on your Facebook wall too, sorry ūüôā My favorite day of the year is St. Patricks Day. I know what your thinking…”WHY?” And a few years ago I would have thought the same thing…but 3 years ago I unexpectedly meant the man I’m going to spend the rest of my life with on that day. We haven’t left each others sides since and don’t plan on it ūüôā

  2. My favorite day of the year is Easter!! It’s such a great celebration, both at church and at our annual family dinners after church. It’s also a sign that spring and school are ending soon and summer is on the way! I also love shopping for the perfect Easter outfit; florals and bright colors are in all the stores and I can finally wear white (yes, I’m old fashioned!!) Congratulations on your upcoming anniversary ūüôā

  3. What a fabulous and generous giveaway! My favorite day of the year is probably my birthday- June 9th. I have always loved having my birthday at the beginning of summer. It starts the summer off with a reason to celebrate! It’s also the day I graduated from high school and when I was in elementary school it was often the last day of school.

    Thanks! xo

  4. My favorite day of the year is December 25. I love Christmas. Its so cool that your anniversary is on the 7th, so are my parents’! An early congratulations to you!

  5. My favorite day of the year is April 10th. That is the day my amazing best friend got down on one knee in our kitchen – a Sunday morning while making breakfast – and asked me to marry him. I say best friend because he truly is. He’s also thoughtful, hilarious, adventurous, caring, and very very handsome ūüėČ I’m the happiest girl in the world thanks to April 10th. Now I need that organizer to start our wedding planning!

  6. My favorite day of the year is December 24th. My family is so impatient that we basically completely celebrate Christmas on Christmas Eve – we open the presents, eat Christmas dinner, and go to church all on Christmas Eve. I just loove Christmas. First of all, everything is just so beautiful covered in Christmas decorations – greenery, ribbons, fake snow, lights… Gorgeous! I also love Christmas caroles and hymns. I get “O Come All Ye Faithful” stuck in my head year round, so I’m pumped when it’s actually appropriate to sing it! Lastly, everyone feels compelled to be nice and cheerful and generous. Everyone is just kinder around Christmas! It’s definitely the best time of the year.

    1. UM definitely my favorite holiday as well. Christmas Eve is big in the Italian culture (my Dad is Italian), so we’ve always celebrated the 24th as well with a BIG dinner and a preview of the presents to come on the 25th!

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