Fashion Trends

Ask Magpie: Special Occasion Dresses, Spring Basics, + More.

By: Jen Shoop

A little commotion for PENELOPE CRUZ! She is too fabulous.

Q: Bachelorette in Austin (I’m not the bride), final night will be staying in and dress code is “cute pajamas.” If you can get to it, thank you!

A: Fun! My first thought was a pair of those feather-trim Sleepers. I bought the black over the holidays and actually wore the set to a kitschy cocktail party and then the top separately with jeans. Super fun and surprisingly comfortable. You can find them on sale in fun colors here and here. I also love these crisp shorts sets — the chartreuse is FUN!, this satin-y star print set from TopShop, and this striped J. Crew set. I feel like all of these would look fabulous with a coupe of champagne in hand.

Q: Engagement dress under $200. Not bright white please.

A: Congratulations! This is really spectacular and sweet (very Zimmermann, without the price tag), and because it’s linen, it won’t read BRIGHT WHITE. That would be my top pick. If you’re open to pattern, love this floral. The silhouette is so romantic! More of a modern take, but this taupe/ecru Monrow is understated sophistication. A bit over-budget, but this tweed mini has a Jackie.-O-does-a-civil-ceremony vibe.

Q: Two year old boy family outdoor wedding outfit, not a ring bearer.

A: This tiny seersucker suit (blazer and pants) will be the talk of the soiree. Hill owned this exact set at the age of two. If that’s too much, I love the Luca and Luca dressy shorts with mandarin collar shirts for a princely European look. I would pair either outfit (seersucker or shorts/mandarin collar shirt) with tiny suede drivers.

Q: I’d love some simple spring basics – light-colored sweaters, thicker long-sleeved t-shirts.

A: I love the spring knits from Alice Walk and La Ligne. Such great colors and stripes! For thicker t-shirts, you must try Kule. Its heavier weight than Ayr or Alice Walk and they do the BEST colors. Even if I hate everything in my closet, I know I can pull out a Kule tee and my favorite jeans and feel put together and happy. This Outdoor Voices tee is also a great everyday staple — not just for fitness! — and Ayr’s Early Morning tee has been on my radar as the perfect dog walking tee for these in-between months (paired with my fav leggings). More casual, but I’ve also been eyeing Frank and Eileen’s heritage popover and triple fleece capelet for awhile. They look like polished versions of athleisure. I feel like I’d wear that popover all the time.

Last but not least, pointelle is enjoying a little spot in the sun right now — I keep seeing people rave about LeSet’s tee. Very on trend.

Q: Fancy cocktail/black tie dress for a weekday lawyer banquet dinner. Becoming officer of org.

A: Way to go!!! Amazing! On the fashion-forward side of things, I just saw Liz Damrich in this Kika Vargas and WOW. Reading the room, though, I’m guessing “law firm” and “officer of org” call for something a bit more conservative. This navy La Ligne is gorgeous, as is this timeless column dress from Black Halo. Both so chic with hair pulled back in a low bun. And if you’re open to pattern, this Zimmermann with some high heels and big earrings!

And if no budget — this, or anything from Bernadette.

Q: Dress for my baby shower in late June (girl!) under $250.

A: Congratulations! My first thought was Anthro’s Somerset dress! It is really cute on, comes in different colors/patterns, etc. I also love the look of something like this — could work with a smaller bump — or a shirtdress like this, with the belt tied above bump. This striped number is under $100 and could be spectacular with simple gold or brown leather sandals and a straw bag/clutch.

Q: Mostly cotton knit lounge sets — too much synthetic out there!

A: I can’t stop thinking about these pointelle pants with this top! These little terry sets are also on my mind. Both are 100% cotton!

Q: Best facial sunscreen?

A: I still swear by Elta MD. Really blends into skin and layers well with other skincare/cosmetics. But most mornings, I put on Saie’s SPF-infused tinted moisturizer, as it eliminates a step in my getting-ready process (don’t need foundation stick after).

Q: Taylor Swift dresses!

A: WAH! Lucky you! I would wear something loud like this top and this skirt, or just a FUN going out dress that makes you feel like dancing, like this one I wore recently to a Derby party, this hot pink, this Juliet Dunn, or this happy ditty. Pair with flat shoes — sneakers, sandals, even cowboy boots (OMG)!

Q: Flower girl dress for three year old. Needs to be white!

A: Bellabliss has perfect, timeless options — check out this or this.

Q: Beach cover-ups.

A: At the top of my list right now is a caftan from Emerson Fry — love the pink or the blue striped. (Shorter lengthed versions available, too.) Did you see Julia Berolzheimer’s new collection with Hermoza? Some really cute finds there. I love the idea of these beach pants, or this wrap skirt. Such great patterns! Last summer, I really loved Julia Amory’s husband shirts as cover-ups (super light weight with an oversized fit), so I ordered this similar style for this year, but this one is also really cute if you prefer a midi length. Finally, one of my FAVORITE, most-reached-for cover-ups last summer was a plain white gauze one from Michael Stars that is no longer available. It always felt so good to put on after the beach/after the pool. This one from Madewell is similar, and this under-$30 style from Target is compelling, too. I’m now contemplating one of these more expensive ones from 9Seed. My cousin wore one of these a summer or two ago and it inspired me to buy the Michael Stars one!

P.S. How do you meal plan? What about staying on top of chores? The comments on these posts are fantastic.

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4 thoughts on “Ask Magpie: Special Occasion Dresses, Spring Basics, + More.

  1. Very late with this comment, but for fun pajamas, Katie Kime PJs are super comfortable and they make a darling Austin Toile print (as well as prints for other cities)!

  2. I’d love some tropical decor recs for a future ask magpie segment.Live in Florida and recently replaced dining chairs with white chippendales and added a white wooden spool coffee table for the open room space. Would love ideas for accessorizing.

    1. Ooo so fabulous! Love the direction you’re headed. Will put some thought into this and share some ideas in an upcoming post.


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