Weekend Vibes, Edition No. 217: J. Crew Dresses + Radical Acceptance.

By: Jen Shoop

My Latest Snag: J. Crew Blockprint + Smocked Dress.

I am so, so happy we are entering dress season. I am much more at home in a dress than I am jeans or pants of any kind for that matter. I just ordered this under-$120 J. Crew dress and cannot wait for it to arrive. (They had a seriously strong collection of new arrivals earlier this week.) I also just noticed that there are a few XS black Nesli nap dresses left and I think that might have to happen, too. Not usually a black gal but that looks like a dream to wear, and I have this fantastic black Furoshiki bag from Roop to pair it with…

While we’re talking dresses…please note that almost all clothing is 20% off at Anthro this weekend only if you are an AnthroPerks member (free to join). I currently have this Daphne-Wilde-esque shirtdress in my cart, and the promo includes pieces from covetable small label Hunter Bell!!! I’m swooning over this scalloped, striped top.

You’re Soooo Popular: The $28 Sweatshirt.

The most popular items on le blog this week:

+This everyday sweatshirt ($28!) — love the length for wearing over leggings.

+This classic beadboard bed.

+This Ulla-like $100 dress in a chic ecru color.

+Fun shades.

+A custom grasscloth-wrapped console at a great price. (I guess a lot of us are furniture shopping!)

+The D. Porthault-esque shirtdress I have not shut up about in the last two weeks. (Sorry, but we are all so excited about it!) The colors and details are so good.

+$15 shades reminiscent of Celine. I own these — love that you can throw them in your bag without being too stressed about them. At this stage in my life, I basically will not buy designer shades because I have scratched, crushed, and lost several pairs, and I am usually very careful with my belongings! I just find they are easy to damage!

+This stylish, sporty hooded jacket — 40% off! Buy now and be happy next fall. Think of your future self!

+Gorgeous intaglios. We seriously considered buying one of these for my MIL for mother’s day but ended up buying her one of the Hunt Slonem bunny plates with two bunnies on it, one for micro and one for mini.

+Lovely smock-detail botanical print dress for $50.

+Ultra-chic rattan-wrapped side table for $120. Looks like S&L!

+This maternity- and nursing-friendly dress at a great price! I would have bought this in a flash if I were expecting.

Weekend Musings: Radical Acceptance.

Have you watched any (or all?) of the Oscar-nominated films from this year? Mr. Magpie and I watched Nomadland on Hulu earlier this week, and Frances McDormand was resplendent in it. It’s an interesting, stirring movie that falls somewhere between documentary and fiction. After some thought, I’m not sure the narrative was best suited to a full-length feature film — I found myself wishing it were instead an eight-part documentary series trailing the lives of the characters we meet, many of whom were based on real-life individuals and performed by non-actors anyway. I feel this format would have been better-tailored to the way the film suggests themes and tends to dial in on detail (in high relief) but sort of tapers off when we are reaching for a central thesis, or denouement.

Still, there were moments that took my breath away, especially the bits in which characters explain with rawness the reasons why they have chosen to live their lives “houseless” — PTSD from war, grief over the loss of parents, a hunger to experience life in a nonconformist way. In one such scene (not spoiling anything), a character explains that he took to a nomadic life after his son took his own life. In this exchange, he lingers for a moment on the way grief can completely consume people. He pauses and says: “Some people never get out of it, and that’s OK. That’s OK.”

I was arrested by that man, by the way he modeled radical acceptance. Having witnessed several loved ones enduring unbearable grief, it is agonizing to imagine anyone permanently stuck there. But there was something in the way he seemed to look unflinchingly at the bereaved and say, “It’s OK to feel the way you are feeling, and for however long you need,” that set a new standard in my own aspirations for engaging with friends living through tough times. There is, I think, a natural (or learned) desire to turn away, or to distract, or to focus on the positive, or to set sights on the future. But to sit in radical acceptance, to put no expectations or limits on another person — that is love!

Post-Scripts: Gift for a Newly-Engaged Friend.

+Adorable gift for a newly-engaged friend.

+This under-$70 outdoor rug looks SO much like a higher end brand…LOVE.

+Fun $42 flip flop — a little more interesting than your basic flip!

+In case you don’t follow me on Insta, I shared photos of myself wearing all five of my most-worn-at-home dresses earlier this week and added one extra I neglected to mention: this $33 Amazon steal, which is so flattering and comfortable! I own it in the blue and white which seems to be low in stock as of the time of writing this post. I also love it in the solid navy!

+Another great caftan option for summer. Tres chic! Still hoping I can one day buy one of these La Vie Style House ones — an investment to be sure. (I own and LOVE this caftan!)

+In love with these raffia hoops!!!

+A great simple linen tote — I would personalize by adding my initials using these patches.

+Clever nesting patio tables.

+Roman shade dreams.

+These rose tidbit plates are so pretty! They remind me of my mother.

+Bought this stationery for mini a few months back — she loves blue.

+Heard really good things about this $8 lipstick/liner duo from Courtney Grow, whose beauty recommendations have not steered me wrong. I first learned about Westman Atelier blush (my favorite) from her nearly a year ago and she also introduced me to Living Libations cleansing oil, which I use every single morning.

+Seriously cute everyday pants as an alternative to jeans!

+You better believe I preordered this gift tags and wrapping paper set.

+Love this top-and-skirt look.

+Scalloped ceramic planters!

+OMG this dress has a zipper down the front — officially the most chic and most nursing-friendly dress I’ve come across. (And I recently rounded up a ton of cute options.)

+Just the prettiest face mask I ever did see.

+In love with this shoe in the perfect shade of blue.

+Thank you to the reader who recommended this $15 swimsuit for little ladies! Love the Minnow-esque style and simple stripes.

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8 thoughts on “Weekend Vibes, Edition No. 217: J. Crew Dresses + Radical Acceptance.

  1. What a beautiful example of practicing radical acceptance. We certainly do live in a culture infused with what I see as a mix of toxic positivity and the insatiable desire to fix or improve. What if you could just let someone be? What if you could just let yourself be? Were The Beatles onto something when they found themselves in times of trouble so they Let It Be? 🙂 In all seriousness, I think they were. Thanks for sharing! It’s easy to like “radical acceptance” as a concept but helpful to see such a poignant, specific example.

    1. Hi Joyce – I’m so glad this resonated with you, too. I was totally and thoroughly moved by that scene for days and days after I watched it. I agree with your point that there is a cultural pressure to focus on the positive and live in a constant state of self-improvement, and that it’s not always a good thing. Thanks for sharing that.


  2. Seconding the reader above (below?) me – Promising Young Woman was my favorite of this year’s bunch, by a landslide. It’s stuck with me in a way that movies have not, for awhile (perhaps since Parasite?). As an aside, I now find myself replaying Paris Hilton’s “Stars Are Blind” blip of a hit because of one of the main scenes in that move – so irreverant and such a midday joy now, ha!

    I found Nomadland unique in its difference of tone – no huge plotline peaks and valleys to follow, simple dialogue, arresting cinematography, variance in its overall message (hope? depresssing? contentment with one’s choices?), but ultimately was a bit underwhelmed by the film, perhaps since it was so highly praised and headlined across various reviews. I think your comment about seeing the storylines across several linked episodes may have been a better fit, and one I hadn’t considered.

    And I Care A Lot was such a fun film: a subversive power play, rooting-for-the-bad-guy, bookmarking-outfit-ideas rollercoaster of a story. Definitely recommend!

    1. Hi Erica! OK, I’ve got to see “Promising Young Woman.” My sister had indicated it was a major downer and so I continuously find myself putting it off, but I’m intrigued by its resonance with you. (“Parasite” also stuck with me for a very long time. So incredibly different from anything I’d ever seen before.). I totally agree with you on Nomadland’s “variance in its overall message.” I went back and forth on that aspect in particular — on the one hand, it could have been the director making space for the breadth and diversity of experiences and outcomes for people living a nomadic existence, and not wanting to simplify the irreducible. On the other hand, a bit of a cop out.


  3. Nomadland was the only film I had watched before the Oscar’s aired and I was pleased that it won. I appreciated the dialogue wasn’t always scripted and that most of the characters were simply being themselves, since they weren’t actors. Great cinematography and the story was very raw. Yet so vital in terms of the way in which this shows their way of life, the age range for most of them, and connecting back to earth.

    Since the Oscars aired I have watched Promising Young Woman, and really appreciated the soundtrack and the ending. Of the other films, Minari is on my watch list and so is The Father and Ma Rainy’s Black Bottom. This is the first time in ages I haven’t seen all or most of the nominated films.

    And if you haven’t seen it, I Care a Lot is a clever and cunning film.

    1. Thanks Michelle! I need to check out “Promising Young Woman” and “I Care A Lot” after two upvotes in this comments section! Thanks also for the note about the way in which “Nomadland” is in part about “connecting back to the earth.” I was really struck by that, too, especially the part where the character says watching those birds watch was all she needed to feel fulfilled. I found that so moving, and so resonant with the way in which so many of these nomadic folks live their lives. Closer to the earth, more attentive to nature, more appreciative of it. A totally different relationship to land than homeowners have, too! I wish the film had explored this a bit more than it did!


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