Capitol Hill Style

Thursday, April 24, 2014 by Belle

Belle’s Weekly Reading: April 24, 2014

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I said things were going to be weird around here, right?  Well, I’m running the weekly reading on a Thursday simply because I haven’t had a moment to collect my thoughts for a “real” post all week.  So there will still be posts tomorrow, just something different from the usual.

What can I say, I’m inscrutable.

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1) Last week, Chelsea Clinton announced that she was pregnant.  Some of the commentary has taken a dark turn as pundits speculate on what the pregnancy might mean for a Hillary 2016 run.  MSNBC offers their thoughts on why much of the coverage is ageist and sexist.

2) This ring is drop.dead.gorgeous.

3) Vulture is running a series of essays on hip-hop’s recent history and its impact on American culture.  The first essay is by Questlove, he of The Roots and The Tonight Show, and is titled, “How Hip-Hop Failed Black America.”

4) Printed blouses are on my radar for spring.  This cobalt, floral blouse from NYDJ is a great buy at $74.  I also love the Dali-like print on this discounted DvF blouse.  And despite the cropped shape, the print on this H&M top is fantastic.  I’d wear it with a high-waisted skirt.

5) A friend sent me what has to be the most D.C. wedding invite in history.  Bring on the copycats.

6) I bought this tunic dress from Athleta to use as a pool cover (also comes in plus-size), and it is cute enough to wear on its own.  I can’t wait for the warmer weather.

7)  Remember AOL Instant Messenger (AIM)?  The pre-Gchat, pre-Facebook college student communication tool?  Mashable has the tale of the technology’s rise and fall.  AIM is dead, long live AIM.

8) During the move, I really cleaned out my nail polish stash.  The must-haves that I had to pack in my suitcase: OPI Red, NARS Tokaido Express (dark purple), Essie Sure Shot (raspberry shimmer) and Deborah Lippmann Daytripper (punchy pink).

9) Bloomberg’s dataview examines mortality trends among Americans.  It’s mildly morbid, but completely engrossing.

10) Classic aviators are my sunglasses style of choice, but this summer I’m trying something new.  All black Ray-Ban aviators.  Kidding, well, half-kidding.  I also bought a pair of oversized, Jackie O-inspired sunglasses from Michael Kors.

11) Need some summer reading?  Try these 50 novels under 200 pages.

12) Getting your bikini line in shape for pool season?  You need a pair of exfoliating gloves and the Tend Skin roll-on.  Say bye-bye to ingrown hairs.

Thursday, April 24, 2014 by Belle

10th Commandment: April 24

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Nina Marisol Sandals ($89)

Evening shoes are something every woman should own.  You never know when you’ll need a pair for a wedding, a cocktail event or other occasion.  I keep one pair of metallic sandals just in case.  I like my evening shoes with a little sparkle, but I think shoes that are dripping in crystals or embellishments often look cheap.  This pair has just enough shine to be festive but not enough to look over done.  They also come in gold.

These Circe sandals, also from Nina, have a slingback style with a lower heel and a great look to them.  If you prefer a traditional pump, this Rylee heel from J.Renee also comes in gold and silver.  They also make a similar style in peep-toe.

Trying to match a bridesmaid’s dress?  These satin pumps from Nina come in 10 colors, have a dance-all-night heel height and a small embellishment on the vamp.

Going to an outdoor event?  Wedges aren’t my favorite, but for walking on grass, there’s nothing better.  (Hear that, Gold Cup, Derby and outdoor wedding attendees?)  These Seychelles metallic wedges are a good start.  LOFT is selling some cute ankle-strap wedges.  Or if you just want a low-heel wedge, try these low wedges with a wood heel from Seychelles.

Wednesday, April 23, 2014 by Belle

Belle’s Picks for Piperlime’s Spring Fling Sale

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Piperlime, one of the best spots on the Web for online shopping, is having its yearly Spring Fling.  This, along with the Shopbop F&F sale is one of the highlights of my shopping calendar.  The reason why is that Piperlime offers a wide selection of items and brands in ever price point, from designer styles to cheap thrills.  Here are a few of my handpicked choices (my credit card is very glad that I don’t currently have a mailing address).

Bags.  So many lovely purses to choose from this time.  On the high-end, I found this Minkoff satchel in black with black-and-white snakeskin print accents–great for any season.  I also love this Minkoff Perry satchel with a peaked corner detail.  In the under-$100 range, this Melie Bianco satchel with a braided handle is great, as is this bone-colored satchel from Tinley Road.

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Shoes. Snakeskin with hints of coral?  These LAMB ‘Felix’ pumps need to be in my closet.  The structured heel on these French Connection sandals is killing it.  We talked a few weeks ago about mixing animal prints into warm-weather attire, and these Dolce Vita pumps do it perfectly.  If you’re not feeling the leopard, they also come in a beige/rose gold mix.

Jewelry.  This open-cuff style ring from Gorjana is simple and chic.  Love long pendants?  This one from Sequin has just the right amount of sparkle and a cool diamond shape.  I also like this shorter necklace from Sabine in gunmetal and gold links.

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Clothing.  For summer, I really gravitate toward stripe dresses like this Amour Vert dress for $132.  Prefer sleeveless?  This BB Dakota dress definitely fits the bill.  I also like this white BB Dakota dress that you could dress down with brown sandals or dress up with coral pumps.  And do not miss this jersey, maxi dress from Colette.

Need work attire?  Try this Michael Kors striped sheath with long sleeves.  I love this $59 Tinley Road blouse, it would look great under a suit or cardigan.  This Natty Front top from BCBG in blush pink really caught my attention.  And this soft grey Pim + Larkin cardigan is perfect for chilly nights at the shore or the chilly, AC-driven cold in your office.

Wednesday, April 23, 2014 by Belle

10th Commandment: April 23

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_8046557BP Moveover Flat ($49)

I have sung the praises of the BP Moveover flat before, but since some of you might be in the market for flats, I thought I would share them again.  In addition to the “nude” they also come in red, cobalt, and black.  You can also find them in a deep cognac brown.

The reason I endorse the pointed toe flat is two-fold: They look better under pants than round-toe flats because they lengthen the leg, and because they offer a more professional looking structure than most round-toe shoes.  I wear them with jeans, pencil skirts, sheath dresses and trousers.

If you prefer metallics, the Nine West Speakup flat (my second favorite shoe) comes in gold and pewter.  These two-tone Chinese Laundry flats are very cool.  And these Sole Society Lynnette flats offer a springy slingback in black or tan.

Also, I’ve owned a few pair of Via Spiga shoes over the years, so these patent flats are definitely worth a look at 50-percent-off.

Tuesday, April 22, 2014 by Belle

State of the Blog: Move Update

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I should have titled this post, “How long are things going to be weird around here?”

As you know, last week, I put all of my belongings on a truck and boarded a flight West.  Instead of heading straight to my final destination, I stopped in MT to play babysitter to one very needy, but very sweet, Golden Retriever and pick up the car that I bought.  (Oh yeah, I’m driving again.  Be afraid.)  Then, when the movers call on a to-be-determined day, I will drive a full day to meet my belongings before turning around and driving a full day to another city in Montana for a religious retreat next weekend.

Awesome, right?

So expect things to be weird around here until the second week of May.  There will be posts.  How many, I cannot guarantee, but there will be posts.  And I’ll get to the reader emails filling up my box at some point this week, I promise.

Please bear with me as I uproot my entire life and move it across the country while caring for a dog, tending to my spiritual responsibilities and helping my brother prepare his house for sale.  Oh yeah, I’m doing that too.  My plate is officially full.

I hope all of you overachieving women are doing well and that you had a blessed Easter, a good Passover or just a great weekend.  I will back in full force sometime in May.  I can’t wait for things to get back to normal.

xoxo, Belle

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Updated for 2014