The Fashion Magpie Anxiety

Weekend Vibes, Edition No. 72: The One on Anxiety.

My Latest Snag: The SZ Blockprints Kitty Dress.

Sorry to beat a dead horse; you probably saw this on Insta, but I snagged an SZ Blockprints Kitty dress from the J. Crew collaboration earlier this week (and wore it to book club!).  They keep selling out online, but there were a bunch in-store at the Columbus Circle location, so if it’s sold out online, don’t give up!  Call your local shop, or scour eBay (ahem, this — there are tons of pieces with tags still on!).  I like the length of the Kitty dress (on me, hits below the knee / mid-calf), so it nails that muumuu vibe I’m going for, but the Leyla is also super chic.  (More on SZ Blockprints and alternate styles here.)

You’re Sooooo Popular: The Fluffiest Towel Ever.

The most popular items on Le Blog this week:

+My favorite towels on the planet.

+A discounted statement blouse.

+This SZ Blockprint tunic!  YES!

+My fave new flats.

+The best concealer known to woman.

+A handy gizmo for dog moms on the go.

+Darling plaid mules for $30!

+A must-have for beach days with baby.

#Turbothot: Anxiety.

I spent a good part of one recent evening going deep into Cup of Jo archives (can you tell — ha!), and I came across this post, titled: “Do You Worry Too Much?”  Now, I’ve labeled myself as a crier on this blog.  As a Catholic.  And many times over as a mom.  But I’ve not yet trotted out my persona as a massive worry-wart, unless it stains all of my writing, which it very well might.  Most of my sisters are the same way; we routinely pick up the phone when ringing at an odd hour and start in with: “What’s wrong?”  I tend to assume Mr. Magpie has been mugged or thrown off the subway platform if he doesn’t text or call by a certain hour of the evening, and I have on more than one occasion made myself physically ill when coiled with anxiety over a certain topic — moving, managing teams, finances, buying a home, selling a home, mini’s first bout of fever.  Just before we moved to Chicago so many years ago, I endured a panic attack.  It completely caught me off guard; I hadn’t realized how sick with worry I was over the prospect of change, over the logistics and moving parts, over the entirely new routines I’d need to build in a new city in which I knew next to nobody.

A Cup of Jo shares an interesting visualization strategy that has helped her cope with bouts of anxiety, and I clung to it quickly.  Though I’m more at peace now than I can recall being for the past many years, we are currently embroiled in a situation with our childcare arrangement that has left me anxious and distracted.  Jo’s Grand Canyon imagery has been helpful in repositioning these concerns for what they are: temporary.  Funnily enough, there’s a quote my sister and I gift to one another when in the straits of stress that plays at a similar philosophy but hails from an entirely different context.  Several years ago, a priest at my Church in Chicago shared that he had been visiting with a woman whose husband was dying of cancer.  The priest would stop by the hospital to find the wife dutifully at her husband’s bedside, in remarkably good spirits.  She was the buoying force in her family — not chipper, exactly, but positive, calm, accepting.  The priest marveled at her composure, startled by her lack of anger and grief.  At last, the priest asked her: “I have to say — you are an inspiration.  How do you keep it together?”  And her response was: “Well, Father, life is bigger than this.”

I play that line back to myself often, or my sister does for me.  For someone to have that perspective in the face of such loss inspires me to apply similar logic to whatever itty-bitty-by-comparison challenge I am tackling.  But setting relativism aside (diminishment by comparison is rarely the healthiest tonic), the mentality is remarkably helpful, because it is true: the sweep of life is broad and this, too, shall pass.

#Shopaholic: The Final Reduction at Net A Porter.

+Net-A-Porter is making its final reductions, and there is an extra 20% off all “sale must-haves.”  Loads of good finds abound: a heavily discounted Marysia bikini, a fun Dodo Bar Or blouse, trendy Golden Goose sneakers, and a floral Ulla skirt.  (Also — I know it’s not for everyone, but I love the prim nautical vibe of this knit tank.)

+This striped dress is absolutely darling.

+For fellow dabblers-in-the-boho-trend: this well-priced dress!  Or, more of a splurge, this SEA patchwork dress (on sale!), which would be SO chic for fall with a pair of booties.  Sort of like the cool weather response to SZ Blockprint’s tunics!

+How sweet is this scalloped-hem dress for a mini?

+This rug comes in the best colors and is currently on sale (or will be come Thursday).  Love.

+Love the black grosgrain on this basket bag.

+I don’t have a Nordstrom card, so I am dying to see whether this sells out prior to Thursday.  I don’t need a new raincoat…or do I?!  LOVE both colorways.  EEEE.

+What a surprisingly chic dress — love the unexpected color and shape!  (And price tag — around $100!)

+For the stylish picnicker.  (Picnic blanket ideas here.)

+Love these scalloped-trim, cotton pique, monogrammable pillows.

+These pom pommed slides are adorable!

P.S.  I still love all of the beauty products I first discovered here.  (Also, the title = 100.)

P.P.S.  One of my favorite posts on language.

P.P.P.S  For any mamas weaning or thinking about weaning out there: you got this..


  1. One of the most helpful tactics that I have gleaned from seeing a therapist for anxiety is to be kind to oneself. Being overly self-critical can amplify anxiety and the resulting tailspin. It sounds so simple – to speak to yourself the same way you’d speak to a close friend – but it’s a difficult habit to rewire. It also requires shifting perspective, and it will help to think of life being bigger than a small (or even a big) mistake or problem!

    1. I love the idea of speaking to myself as though I’m talking to a friend! So smart – I will be using this! Xo

  2. I have a lot of friends and some family members who deal with major anxiety and I know it’s rough. I really struggle to figure out to how I can help but I’m often left feeling helpless, partly because I know I don’t fully understand it. I can be prone to worrying for sure (if my mom isn’t home when I expect her to be, or if a friend is late without warning I assume the absolute worst), but I know that’s different than chronic anxiety. I’m glad you found something that works, I’ll keep that Cup of Jo post in mind for friends who want to try a new strategy.

  3. I bought the Barbour jacket you are interested in from the Nordstrom Anniversary sale in the cream color. I went up a size as suggested and I love it. When you roll the sleeves they have a very chic tartan pattern. I highly recommend it if it remains when the sale goes public.

  4. I love this turbothot — I can deeply relate to it, as I am a natural worrywart and have been that way for as long as I can remember (I was so anxious as a child that I started therapy as an elementary schooler … 🙁 )

    I love the perspective you share from your priest. It’s true, that life is bigger than the individual obstacles we face, even life-changing obstacles such as a terminal diagnosis. It would do me well to remember this in times of need!

    As always, I love your thoughtful writing — your humanity shines through every piece you post here.

    P.S. Thanks for the tip about an extra 20% on some sale items at Net-A-Porter! I have been lusting over this nightdress, and hope it’s opaque enough to use as a casual dress as well (we shall see):

    1. So so cute!!! Let me know what you think — I love that pj brand.

      I’m sure you already have some helpful tools/strategies when coping with anxiety, but glad to have added another!

    2. I bought the nightdress & wore it to sleep last night. I ended up going a size up juuuust in case, and it’s pretty pretty loose, but it works. I don’t think I’ll be wearing it as an actual dress for the sizing reason, but the tie shoulders are ADORABLE and the fabric is very high-quality. A good buy for $66 in my book!

  5. It does suffuse your writing- and opens up the whole heart within it. (Also- I really enjoy the “motherhood around the world” series COJ do!)
    So funny, my priest in Palm Beach ALSO shared the same anecdote! With the same story setup…. I have to laugh imagining them all swapping stories and thinking “oh I’m going to use this one too”!!!!

    Have a great weekend and hope to see you tomorrow 🙂

    1. Hi! OMG – that is too funny about the priest! Maybe they all have a couple of “origin myth” stories that they circulate and share 🙂

      Love that COJ series!!! Her site is so wonderful.


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