A Playlist for a Dinner Party.

I’ve written elsewhere that music is a key ingredient to a successful gathering at home, and, over the years, have curated dozens of playlists for a broad range of entertaining occasions — everything from dinner with in-laws to late night dance parties to lazy Sunday hang-outs. Today, I thought I’d share one of my favorite playlists, titled “That Must Be Nigel with the Brie.” This playlist is perfect for a classy cocktail or dinner party, the kind where you might be eating off of formal china now but the wine is flowing. In other words, this playlist is a great mix of the sophisticated and the soulful. If you were born in the 80s, you’ll understand the title, which is pirated from a line in “10 Things I Hate about You.” In the movie, a group of uptight, academically-oriented students are enjoying a highbrow gathering at home when the doorbell rings and an onslaught of the entire high school student body tramples in. Unaware of the imminent arrival of their wild and unwieldy classmates, one character says, in a nasal voice: “That must be Nigel with the Brie!” My sister and I find endless applications for this quote, but it feels just right for the following playlist: a good mix of pinky out and shoes off. Think candles burning low and a good barolo open on the coffee table.

I’ve created the playlists on Apple Music and Spotify in case it’s easier to access that way. But here is the playlist, top to bottom.

“MANOIR DE MES REVES” // DJANGO REINHARDT

“HOMESICK” // THE MARCUS KING BAND

“MERRY GO ROUND” // THE EQUATICS

“TEZETA” // MULATU ASTATKE

“ME & MR JONES” // AMY WINEHOUSE

“SAME OLD NEWS” // LAKE STREET DIVE

“PAPERBACKS” // ARLO PARKS

“ROCK YOUR BABY” // GEORGE MCCRAE

“HEY GIRL” // LADY GAGA FEAT FLORENCE WELCH

“SUN GO DOWN” // FAT NIGHT

“FLY ME TO THE MOON” // BOBBY WOMACK

“MIDNIGHT IN HARLEM” // TEDESCHI TRUCKS BAND

“I LOVE YOU FOR SENTIMENTAL REASONS” // NAT KING COLE

“STARDUST” // WILLIE NELSON

“HARVEST MOON” // NEIL YOUNG

“RULER OF MY HEART” // IRMA THOMAS

“CRY, CRY, CRY” // JUDITH HILL

“OUT IN THE COLD AGAIN” // VAN MORRISON

“MISTAKES” // LAKE STREET DIVE

“I SAW STARS” // DJANGO REINHARDT

“SKIPPING STONES” // GALLANT FEAT JHENE AIKO

Post-Scripts.

+Things I’ve learned while cooking and entertaining.

+A fab party dish.

+Entertaining girlfriends at home.

+Some great kitchen gear to amp up your cooking game.

+My husband’s obsession with food is one of his most attractive traits.

Shopping Break.

+A demure approach to the cut-out dress trend.

+Caspari does the cutest cocktail napkins! These and these would be so punchy on a butler’s tray with some bar snacks and a few tumblers of G&T.

+I mentioned this a few posts ago, but had to re-share: these artfolios are on sale for over 50% off and make such adorable gifts! I bought one for each of my children (they also have a black squiggle style) and a few to give away. These backpacks (also by State!) are on sale for $31 — usually $85! I know a lot of you like this brand for your children’s school backpacks.

+These personalized bow note cards are chic and adorable.

+Two fabulous tennis dresses: this Lacoste and this Varley. (More finds for summer sports here.)

+I have been to the driving range a few times recently and will be playing nine holes with Mr. Magpie this week. I’ve been getting by with pieces in my closet not specifically designated for golf (usually Lacoste polos and Lulu fitness skorts) but if I continue in this sport, I want to invest in some pieces from Byrdie, like this dress or this one.

+I can’t get over this $40 H&M dress. The neckline is so sophisticated! Reminds me of the twist necklines on several Johanna Ortiz dresses I’ve been drooling over. I feel like this dress is meant to go with a raffia platform slide.

+Speaking of Johanna Ortiz, there are a bunch of her dresses on absurd discount in very small quantities at Bergdorf’s — consider this navy (!) and this patterned midi. Also: this insanely stylish top, originally $550, now $137. Pair with jeans for the chicest fall look.

+Outrageously fun statement bag for fall.

+$100 party pants!!!!

+Tuckernuck’s beach collection has some really fun pieces —

+These dining chairs are so interesting/architectural and different.

+Usborne’s Look Inside books are such great “busy books” for little ones. Both of my children are enthralled with them. Great for Church, travel, restaurants. My daughter loves this one on human anatomy and my son adores this construction site one.

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