Capitol Hill Style

Tuesday, October 21, 2014 by Belle

Belle’s Closet: Tinley Road Knit Dress

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Asymmetrical Wrap Knit Dress ($158)

Tinley Road has some nice pieces right now, but this knit dress immediately caught my eye.  I loved the marled color palette and the draped skirt.  I also like that I can wear it bare-legged now and with tights in a few weeks.  I also like it with a belt to re-emphasize the waist.  It’s the kind of versatile piece that you reach for when you have a closet full of nothing to wear.

Tinley Road also has this navy drape dress, which is a great option for dinners out or after work cocktails.  I also like this vegan leather dress in graphite if you’re looking for something more unique.  And if you’re looking for a cardigan to keep at your desk for chilly indoor conditions, this cocoon sweater in cotton-blend looks cozy.

Tuesday, October 21, 2014 by Belle

Pinterest Stylist: A Pop of Orange

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1. Zara Fabric Blazer ($79) // 2. Mango Chiffon Panel Blouse ($45) // 3. J.Crew Telegraph Skirt ($138) // 4. Ivanka Trump Carra Pump ($135) // 5. Michael Kors Hamilton Tote ($298) // 6. Liz Claiborne Collar Necklace ($17) // 7. Ralph Lauren Bar Drop Earrings ($26)

Jessica Alba is one of the few celebrities who can pull off boho-chic on Monday and professional style on Tuesday.  I like that this look contains basic pieces that you can use to create other outfits.  And if you’re looking for a handbag in a vibrant color, orange is a great way to go.  It’s a bit more interesting than red but just as vibrant.

One. I bought this white blazer from Zara last month, and I love it.  It’s a good-quality, heavy fabric.  If you want something without the decorative buttons, I like this Aryn K blazer and I adore this Trina Turk blazer on sale (in several sizes) at Amazon.  Wear a size 8 to 22?  You need (need) to look at this Violeta blazer.

Two. This Mango blouse is one of the nicest tops that I’ve seen in this price range in a while.  I like the cap sleeve, the pleated front and the sheer details.  If you want more of a sleeve, try this under-$20 blouse from Forever21.  Looking for long sleeves?  Mango also offers this blouse with a sheer yoke.

Three. The slightly below the knee skirt is really hot right now.  Before you decide that the longer length won’t work for you, do me a favor and try the skirt on.  I didn’t think that it would look good on me either, but I was pleasantly surprised.  Maybe you will be too.

This J.Crew skirt is a nice option.  Looking for something under-$75?  This Grace Elements skirt is a good basic.  And I’ve had good luck with the Gianni Bini brand from Dillard’s, so I’d also give that skirt a look.

Four. A patent leather pump is a great shoe, with a pointed-toe it’s a sleek look for work.  This Ivanka Trump shoe is a nice option.  If you want to buy a more expensive pair that will last, these Ferragamo pumps will never go out of style.  Need a shoe under-$75? These BCBGeneration pumps are a good place to start.

Five. Orange bags abound at the end of the summer, and the great thing about orange is that it works equally well as a fall hue.  If you’re not looking to spend more than $100 on an orange bag, have a look at this Co-Lab satchel with a similar shape.  I also like this sleek Kenneth Cole dome satchel.

Six. Want to jazz up a crewneck blouse?  Choose a necklace that frames the collar.  It gives the blouse a bit of shine while complementing the neckline.  In addition to this Liz Claiborne piece, I really like this bamboo collar from Simply Soles.  (It’s very Diane Lockhart.)  This open chain collar from BCBG is a lovely, modern choice.

Seven. A small pair of drops are a great alternative to stud earrings.  I like these leaf-shaped Ralph Lauren drops.  These small teardrop earrings from Macy’s are lovely.

Tuesday, October 21, 2014 by Belle

Morning Line: October 21

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I am craving a dark navy handbag.  I want to wear it with black and grey pieces.  I also think it would look amazing with plums, teals and blush.

Corner Office

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Vince Camuto Abby Satchel ($298)

Middle Cubicle

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Boden Soft Leather Satchel ($174)

Intern Desk

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Forever21 Zippered Satchel ($28)

Monday, October 20, 2014 by Belle

Ask Belle: Under-$50 Sweater Dresses

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Dear Belle,

Thank you so much for turning me onto sweater dresses with leggings.  I wear them every weekend from October to March because they are so comfortable and snugly.  I get bored though, so I prefer to buy cheap dresses and then donate them to Goodwill after a couple of months.  Can you help me find some new dresses for $50 or less?

I’m so glad you kept blogging while in school! Thank you, PM

Sweater dresses are a versatile option.  You can wear them with leggings on the weekends or with tights on casual workdays.  They’re also a great option for traveling if you add a big scarf and some comfy flat boots.  Here are a few under-$50 dresses that caught my eye.

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Longsleeve Shift Sweater Dress ($30)

This sweater dress from Target is awesome.  In comes in two color block combos (this ivory one and a black and grey one) and in two different stripes patterns.  Target also offers this Textured Sweater Dress in eight gorgeous colors.  And don’t miss this Drop-waist Sweater Dress in a soft grey, black or slate blue.  Target also offers a couple of sweater dresses in plus-size.

LOFT offers this cable sweater dress in four fall hues for $90.  It has a shirt tail hem, so it’s more of a casual option.  Back in the under-$50 range, I like this Choies sweater dress with a cool, dotted pattern.  This Calvin Klein asymmetrical-neck sweater dress option is really chic.

Monday, October 20, 2014 by Belle

Ask Belle: Tops That Don’t Have to Be Tucked

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Dear Belle,

I desperately need new work tops to wear to my big-law job.  The problem? I don’t look good in flowy/drapey/slouchy/boxy tops, but that’s all that seems to be available this fall.  Even the sweaters are oversized!  I need structured tops (not button-downs, but tops that can be left untucked and look professional, not too long).  Please help.

love the blog, S.

S, I feel your pain.  I hate when the tails of my tops hang out, but I loathe tucking shirts into my jeans.  Truly structured tops are hard to find in moderate price points, but I found a few that eliminate some of your issues.

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Boden Spot Jacquard Top ($62) // Theory Drate Stay Top ($160) // WHBM Ponte Pleat-Bodice Top ($79)

This Boden blouse is a great example of a top that can be tailored to be boxy or fitted.  A side-seam adjustment is an inexpensive alteration that can give your tops a great shape.  I also found this affordable Forever21 top in a bright blue, and this wine-colored Dorothy Perkins top (also in tall and petite).

I also like this Vince Camuto pinstripe top with a strong structure to it.  It would look great with grey trousers.  This heavy jersey top from Boden has mod structure and an on-trend funnel neck.

I bought this Theory blouse at the Bloomingdale’s F&F sale.  I didn’t think I would like it because the gathered hem isn’t may favorite, but I love it.  The color is a gorgeous pine green, and the fit is much more structured than I thought it would be.  This navy blouse from Joie has a similar look without being too drapey.

The last style that I would suggest is a peplum top.  If you can find one that has a slimmer peplum, like this WHBM number, it will define the waist and create the illusion of an hourglass shape.  Rebecca Taylor and BCBG offer tops with a similarly structured shape.  But my favorite tailored peplum top comes from Asos–it’s crisp, it’s gorgeous, it’s $35.

Plus-size ladies should have a look at this Alfani top with a gathered hem.  I didn’t find any others with a strong structure, so if you would like to share a tailored plus-size blouse, please do so in the comments.

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Updated for 2014