Musings + Essays

Weekend Vibes, Edition No. 242: Love Has a Long Tail.

By: Jen Shoop

My Latest Snag: Thanksgiving Outfits for the Littles.

After snagging one of Hill House’s new Jasmine velvet nap dresses for myself for Thanksgiving, I bought mini this La Coqueta dress to pair with burgundy tights, a burgundy velvet hair bow, and these black velvet bow shoes (such a good Amazon find!!!). BTW, LaCoqueta also just launched their Christmas collection and I think our holiday looks are set — this tartan dress for mini and this coordinating dungarees for micro. I can’t deal with the details — love those leather knot buttons on the overalls!! Micro will wearing this Foque set (I couldn’t handle the sweater and plaid shorts…so beyond adorable) with knee socks and these adorable loafers. Have I talked your ear off on the loafers already? I honestly can’t believe the price. $20 and they are so well-made and so thoughtfully designed — love that the top opens up as a velcro. Easy for us to get on and off! Strongly recommend, especially if you are looking for dressier shoes your son will only wear to a handful of formal occasions this season. (However, I’ve been pairing them with his tiny dark-wash jeans — he has this exact pair — and a button-down and he looks beyond adorable in it.)

Next on my shopping list for littles: winter boots. I’m thinking these classics in navy for micro. He had them in black last year!

You’re Soooo Popular: The Empire Waist Midi.

The most popular items on le blog this week:

The Fashion Magpie blog best sellers

+This empire waist midi. Sort of like SEA and Ulla had a less expensive baby.

+This crewneck sweatshirt. Perfect slouchy shape for layering over Aligns for a “cool mom on the go” morning.

+This cropped cashmere cardi.

+This gorgeous footed bowl belongs on a Thanksgiving table.

+Jellycat stuffies make the best gifts.

+Turtleneck sweater tunic!

+These Halloween fidget toys were a big hit — I shared that I was giving them away to micro’s play group for Halloween as a sweet treat alternative and tied them in cellophane bags with personalized tags. (You can see how they turned out here.). The toys also come in a Christmas motif that could be adorable to give out to classmates, neighbors, etc and this is the PERFECT gift tag to attach given the clever phrasing (“hope your Christmas is poppin — these are literally POP toys!). Another cute option: attach these tags to individual boxes of crayons or tubs of green play-doh paired with a plastic holiday cookie cutter.

+Fabulous $25 puff sleeved sweater.

+The best cableknit tights for littles. Such a good value! Super thick and well-constructed. Mini wore these all last year and I just bought a new three pack in ivory. (More great little girl Amazon accessory finds here.)

+Well-priced pair of double gourd lamps.

+Blush ornament set — I’m obsessed with that dog in the upper right hand corner.

+Target clog boots — appear to have been restocked in both colors in all sizes.

+Ceramic holiday house set — so fun to arrange these on a mantle/down the middle of a dining table/in a window sill/etc.

+Adorable and affordable statement sweatshirt for a little love.

+Absurdly chic caftan that reminds me of something by Vita Kin.

+Peter Pan collar holiday top for a little boy.

+Sweetest velvet shoes for a little lady — $25!

Weekend Musings: Sentimental Reasons.

Do you know the Nat King Cole song “I Love You (For Sentimental Reasons)”? My Dad used to play this song when I was growing up and I grew even more attached to it after it appeared on the soundtrack for one of my all-time favorite movies, “As Good As It Gets,” where it plays during a pivotal plot point. For, well, sentimental reasons, I recently added it to a “Cozy” playlist I have, which features the kind of mildly cheesy, cinematic songs that make me swell with love and nostalgia. (Think Van Morrison’s “Out in the Cold Again” and Natalie Merchant’s “One Fine Day.”) As I was driving towards my parents’ house listening to it the other week, I had the out-of-body sense that I would forever connect that song to the hygge of moving home this year and being close to my parents again and navigating these roads that I have known for so long. And it all tracked — I love this town for sentimental reasons.

But it occurred to me then: is there any kind of love that’s not sentimental? I’ve never known a love that’s not tender-hearted and dewy-eyed and in part steeped in nostalgia. I feel as though love builds around shared experiences, leverages memories. For me, love does not emerge in isolated, sudden bursts. Love has a long tail. Perhaps the thinking is that some love — especially among family members — is instinctual, predestined. For example, love for a sibling or parent or a newborn is almost beyond sentimentality. And perhaps there are some difficult relationships we nurture out of love but not necessarily with the kind of droopy-hearted affection Cole conjures. And maybe there are brand-new loves that feel exhilarating rather than soft-hearted. Still. I don’t know — are there really different kinds of love? Love can express itself in myriad ways, but at its core, it all feels the same to me — the same kind of tugging, backward-looking warmth.

What do you think?


+Many of my loyal Magpies have been raving about Madewell denim for years. I finally took the plunge and ordered this pair, which I think might be an even better answer to the Magpie who recently asked for “The perfect fall jeans — modern yet classic, not trendy.” I don’t love the frayed hem and it does come in other washes without that hem, but I was obsessed with the color the frayed pair came in. Will report back! Very excited about these. Have been looking for a new pair of everyday denim to pair with basics like turtlenecks, cardigans, etc.

+Adore these inexpensive holly print jammies.

+Have heard so many good things about this holiday candle. Ordering for our home this winter as an alternative to “old faithful,” Diptyque’s “Feu De Bois.”

+I can’t stop buying knitwear — this gorgeous $30 style is currently in my cart. Lots of other great affordable sweaters here.

+This personalized sweater for a little lady…swoon! The pearls!

+Thinking of buying some of these gorgeous candles as a stocking stuffer for my mom and MIL. Will do an entire post on gifts/stocking stuffers under $20 but these are a good starting point!

+Just ordered these pillows for our guest bedroom after multiple bloggers I trust raved about them. They are different from the memory foam ones I’ve used in our own bed for years and years, but also much less expensive (currently $40 for 2 plus 40% off!!!) and with lots of praise. I was sold!

+On my forever wishlist — a ladylike top coat from MaxMara.

+In the interim, this new J. Crew coat style is VERY chic and comes in great colors.

+Has everyone else known about Bona’s microfiber mop for years and not said anything?! This is the best for a quick dust of the hardwood floor, and it also has an attachment you can use with their cleaning solution. It is fantastic!!! Our new housekeeper introduced me to this!

+A Magpie asked me for tartan midi/maxi skirts and I shared some great options in the comments section here, but this gorgeous Etsy find was too good not to re-share here! Pair with a black cashmere sweater and pumps. So chic! Dondolo also just launched a gorgeous tartan maxi skirt in a surprising colorway. J’adore! Your little one can match, too!

+Another fun tartan find.

+Love the LL Bean vibes of this $30 canvas wood carrier, if you have a wood burning fireplace!

+I’ve been hearing good things about these “no B.S.” black pants. They’re kind of a dressier legging perfect for layering underneath a shacket or turtleneck tunic sweater.

+Love this sherpa gilet.

+The prettiest dog toy I ever did see. Ordered this for Tilly’s Christmas stocking!

+Obsessed (!) with this fringed cape. So incredibly chic!!!

+This Etsy shop personalizes Mason Pearson brushes…so adorable.

+Another great fall wedding guest dress.

+Great ribbed leggings in a fab color for a little lady.

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10 thoughts on “Weekend Vibes, Edition No. 242: Love Has a Long Tail.

    1. Oh my gosh! Thank you for the intro! I am in love with these pieces and their more reasonable price points. Following them immediately!

  1. I actually bought that J Crew Villa coat and immediately returned it because the fit was SO BAD. I know that J Crew does wild size inflation, so I sized down from my normal size and I was still absolutely swimming in it. The tailoring and proportions were totally off as well. Which is too bad, because the colors are indeed great, and I love their cocoon coats.

  2. Hope you love the madewell jeans! If you end up thinking “meh,” I recommend trying the stove pipe style, for a similar straight look with a slightly lower rise (and standard hems). Hannah is right that the sizing can be a bit random depending on the style and the type of denim, I always end up buying in store where I can try on different sizes.

    I love Nat King Cole’s voice! So smooth. That song reminds me that I should queue up the standards station on Pandora again 🙂 I was going to say I think some love is more sentimental than others (how can I be as sentimental about someone I just met as I am about old friends or family?) but as I reflect on it, the mushie feeling is the same in both cases. So I guess I think there can be different kinds of love but definitely agree they all seem to have a sentimental pull. Deep thoughts for a Saturday morning!!

    Hope your family has a great time trick or treating etc (future sentimental memories?? Ha). We will have a little octopus and a toddling penguin. I’ve just been informed that I’ll be a shark so time to get working on that I guess :/

    1. Hi! Shoot, my jeans from Madewell won’t arrive until mid December (backordered in that wash in my guessed-at size). Now I’m wondering if I should order a different style/size and see how they work. Thanks for the caveat emptor.

      Thanks also for your thoughts on the sentimental aspect of love! I think we landed in the same place there.


  3. I have those Madewell jeans and love them! I was surprised how far down I needed to size to get a proper fit. I bought them in store and the saleswoman convinced me to go two sizes down from what I usually wear. I’m curious how you’d wear them in cold weather!

    1. Thanks for this! I ordered one size down based on reviews and it won’t arrive until December so now I’m wondering if I should try the one two sizes down that will arrive sooner just in case…hm.

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