Capitol Hill Style

Thursday, July 24, 2014 by Belle

Two Ways: Flounce Pencil Skirt



Skirt: H&M Ruffle Skirt ($30)

From Left, Earrings: M. Flynn Rose Quartz Drops ($68) Rings: Windrose Ring ($95) and Sole Society Midi Set ($25) Bag: Michael Kors Selma Satchel ($358) Shoes: Sam Edelman Opal Heel ($100) Jacket: Blush Dome Jacket ($59) Top: Mossimo Sleeveless Print Top ($20)

From Right, Bracelet: Alfani Texture Bangle ($28) Clutch: Crinkle Satin Clutch ($28) Shoes: Nine West Allysway Sandal ($78) Earrings: Mixit Chandelier Earrings ($12) Top: Cory Sequined Top ($128)

For the Office. Blush, white and black…one of my favorite color combinations.  It’s soft, classic and feminine.  Does that check all of the boxes, or does that check all of the boxes?

The blazer is a pale blush color from Dorothy Perkins.  I like the complementary necklines, but the Mossimo top could also be worn with this v-neck, structured Topshop blazer.  Prefer cardigans?  Old Navy has an awesome blush one that would look great worn open or belted with a double-wrap belt.

The Mossimo top is a great basic.  Need something similar in plus-size? Try this Calvin Klein top.  Petite?  Try this Kasper blouse.

I chose the rose quartz earrings because I wanted the pinks to work together.  Want something cheaper?  Have a look at these Ralph Lauren drops.

As for the rings, the Windrose is my perennial favorite.  I’ve worn mine nearly every day since I bought it last year.  In fact, I just bought two more in case I lose one or it gets too scratched up to wear.  Definitely something I’ll be wearing when I’m old.  As for the midi rings, how adorable are they?  And if you’re headed over to Sole Society, I also love this cutout ring and this round stone statement ring.

To finish up, I chose a simple D’orsay heel and a grey satchel.  I prefer grey with black and white because it’s less severe, but still neutral.  I own this satchel in red, and it’s worth every penny.  Need something cheaper?  Try this pale grey satchel from Steve Madden.

For the hair, I would do a soft updo.  I really like this tutorial from Pinterest that shows you how to do a low chignon on shoulder length or longer hair.  Makeup?  Play it simple with a neutral look.  Don’t compromise the color palette of the outfit, but do add black eyeliner.

For Cocktails.  This skirt is a versatile piece for work, casual and evening.  The flounce gives it a little something extra that can be paired with any evening top for dinner, cocktails or a semi-formal wedding.

I loved the look of the embellished top with sheer accents.  Like the sheer but want to skip the sequins?  Have a look at this inset top from BCBG.  Petite?  Try this sheer-yoke Banana Republic top.  Plus-size?  Don’t miss this Vince Camuto top.

The white shoe is a bit of a departure from the typically classic style on this blog, but sometimes, it’s nice to shake things up.  Not into it?  Go for a basic black sandal like this Isaac Mizrahi heel.  Or you can replace the clutch with something more basic and wear these glorious raspberry-colored sandals from Schutz.

How great are these $12 earrings?  Fantastic.

For the hair, I would wear it down in waves.  For the makeup, I would go for a red lipstick (of course), like MAC Ruby Woo, and a red nail, like OPI Red.

Thursday, July 24, 2014 by Belle

10th Commandment: July 24



H&M Ruffle Skirt ($30)

Want an alternative to the basic black pencil?  I love the little ruffle on this skirt.  It’s so fun.  This Ann Taylor skirt has a more pronounced flounce to it.  And I found similar style in navy.

Like the idea of a little something extra, but not crazy about the ruffle?  This XOXO drape skirt is a great option (runs small), as is this River Island one.  I also like this peplum skirt from WHBM (limited sizes).

Tall? Dorothy Perkins Panelled Skirt ($19).  Plus-size? Lord & Taylor Fluted Skirt ($50). Petite? Banana Republic Flounce Skirt ($59).

Wednesday, July 23, 2014 by Belle

Belle’s Workday Reading: July 23, 2014




1) Huffington Post examines #sorrynotsorry, and how we may be teaching the next generation of women to succeed and “speak up in the world we wished they lived in, not the one they actually inhabit.”

2) Moving out of the D.C.-humidity has benefits (great hair!) and drawbacks (dry skin).  Every Anniversary Sale, I grab this giant bottle of Kiehl’s Creme de Corps.  It also comes with a desk-size bottle, so your skin can be moisturized as needed.

3) The Cut examines why we treat the public relations field like a pink ghetto–a place where women vastly outnumber men, and still struggle to have their accomplishments recognized.

4) Off 5th has some great work pieces right now.  From DvF, they have this cobalt Raquel dress and this black-and-white print wrap dress.  I also love this tweed Milly jacket for $125.  And don’t miss these mid-height black wedges for under-$100.

5) 11 grammar lessons leaked from the CIA’s style book.

6) Looking for cute tops under-$25?  This tulip sleeve blouse with a dot print from Forever21 is fab.  I also love this rust-colored crepe blouse and this teal-printed, tie-neck top (it would look great under a black cardi or blazer).

7) From Fast Company, an article discussing the five mistakes you’re probably making at work.

8) The Rebecca Minkoff sale at Gilt has some winning bags.  I bought the Knocked-Up bag that I’ve been eyeing for a cool laptop/work tote for half-price.  If you need a red bag, they have the stylish Perry satchel in the mini and large sizes.  Not a Gilt member?  Join here.

9) Financial concerns are relative, and it’s important to maintain perspective. In this article from Learnvest, a D.C. woman questions whether entry-level professionals who can afford to go to happy hour should ever call themselves poor.

10) Oh, Rouland Mouret, why can’t you just make me an entire wardrobe full of beautiful dresses?

If you love RM, he’s doing a collab with Banana Republic.  Sign up for the e-mail notification so you don’t miss it. I need everything he made…everything.

11) Several readers have written in this month asking for tips on how to get back into the working world after being fired. has some interview tips for the recently fired.

12) Zara has some cute flats right now.  I love these black, round-toe ones with black gems are cool.  These black cap-toe flats are also adorable.  And don’t miss these pointed-toe, basic black shoes–for under-$50, I bought them immediately.

As for the comfort of Zara shoes, I find the flats to be a 7 to 7.5.  They’re not well-padded enough for a long walk, but if you want to add an insole, they can easily go all day.

Wednesday, July 23, 2014 by Belle

10th Commandment: July 23



Tinley Road Erin Top ($89, also in black and blush)

Who doesn’t love an inexpensive top to layer under blazers and cardigans?  I know, I do.

This Erin top is great, so is the Cooper & Ella top that I mentioned yesterday.  If you need a sleeve, don’t miss this dotted blouse from Daniel Rainn or this berry-colored, split-neck top from Collective Concepts.

Petite? This spotted Olivia Moon top is fantastic, and I love this Geo Print blouse from Banana Republic.  Plus-size? I like this black and white print top from Modcloth, and this mod Vince Camuto top is great.

Need to get smells out of your poly-blend blouses?  If the tag doesn’t prevent washing, I will put them in my intimates bag to protect them from the agitator and wash them on cold with some Oxi-Clean and detergent.  Keeps that musty deodorant smell off of them.

Tuesday, July 22, 2014 by Belle

Visual Retail Therapy with Belle


Since every third person I know is an attorney, I was under no illusions that law school would be easy.  But cramming 14 weeks worth of instruction into a 10 week summer semester has been like squeezing Michael Strahan into one of Kelly Ripa’s dresses.  My sanity is as strained as those seams would be.

So how to cope?  I’ve tried Xanax.  It gets me to sleep, but that’s about it.  I’m trying yoga, it helps a bit, but my mind isn’t easily calmed.  Frankly, the thing that helps the most is this blog.  Call it Visual Retail Therapy.  And last night, my VRT carried me over to Piperlime where they’re having a 20%-off sale that is not to be missed.


For this episode of VRT, I decided to revel in online window shopping for pieces that are gorgeous, but that I can probably not afford.  On our left, we have a gorgeous Rebecca Taylor dress ($395) with a drop waist and sheer inset on the bodice–so fun!  In the middle, a Claire Vivier clutch ($210) with a versatile and unobtrusive leopard print.  And last, but by no means least, we have a Vince leather jacket for an eye-popping $995.

Why look at pieces you can’t afford?  Sadism, perhaps?  No, you look to find the styles you like, which will usually trickle down to where you live soon.  For the dress, I like the sheer over the v-neck.  For the clutch, I love that colors in the print are true neutrals.  For the jacket, I love the wide collar and the slouchy fit.

Looking for some items that are more in the Hill Staffer price point, so you can get them 20%-off?  This DvF Raquel dress would be $140 with the code Fall20. I love the bright berry color.  This charcoal melange Marc Jacobs top is $104 after the code–it’s the perfect mix of casual and professional.  For my under-$100 pick, do not miss this Cooper & Ella double v-neck top in ivory or navy.  It’s the perfect piece for under your suit jacket.

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Updated for 2014