Workday Reading + Ask The Edit

Belle’s Weekly Reading: January 31, 2014


One of the primary reasons that I left my last job was that my life had become incredibly monotonous.  Work, fundraiser, blog, sleep, repeat.

My only resolution this New Year was to have more adventures.  So this weekend, Little Brother and I are headed to Super Bowl XLVIII to watch our Broncos bring home the championship.  I think that qualifies as an adventure.


1) As social media evolves, marketing evolves with it.  One lucky man called a number he saw in an Old Spice commercial and won two tickets to the Super Bowl.  Are Easter Eggs like this the wave of the future?

2) It’s almost time for spring dresses.  At the top of my list?  This black-and-white Eliza J dress with a fuchsia belt, and this printed fit-and-flare dress from French Connection (also good with tights for right now).

3) Will we use commas in the future?

4) I never thought that Nordstrom would be selling camouflage print.  Apparently the Duck Dynasty aesthetic is more pervasive than I thought.

5) Tired of eating sad lunches at your desk?  Sweetsonian has the skinny on an idea that can breathe life back into your midday meal.  It’s called a Soup Swap, and it livens up your lunch and helps build office morale.

My favorite soup?  Cucina Cucina’s sausage and lentil.  Make two recipes and freeze them for whenever the craving strikes.

6) Can a toner actually be hydrating?  This Fresh toner exfoliates and breathes life back into skin that’s been battered by the elements.  If that doesn’t get the job done, this GlamGlow Hydrating Mask will.

7) With the Academy Awards on the horizon, the stars are bringing their A-game to every red carpet.  Lupita Nyong’o is making the All-Star Team of Fashion.  Here are her best looks.

8) ASOS is having a big sale.  I snapped up this pretty, blush-colored dress, and this simple short-sleeve dress in bottle-green.  And if you’re in the market for a cool bag?  This shopper tote with a wood base is cool.

9) Elle explores whether dieting is anti-feminist.  Personally, taking care of your health and working for a body you are proud of is empowering, not degrading.

10) Net-a-Porter always has the best J.Crew pieces before they appear in their namesake store.  I bought this black jersey dress with blush trim, and it’s sublime.  This crystal-embellished terry sweatshirt is lovely.  And if you’re into bows, don’t miss this sweatshirt.

11) This article on the history of divorce should be depressing, but it’s actually fascinating.  I think those of us who grew up in the late-20th Century forget that divorces were once so controversial that they divided nations and split religions.

12) Are you a fan of Zella’s Live-In Leggings?  Don’t miss their other colors and prints.  I love this grey melange.  I also love this Z-5 v-neck tee.  Plus-size?  Zella has you covered.

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  1. DB says:

    Belle! I hate to break it to you, but those are all from the holiday 2013 line at JCrew, and were all marked down sometime right before Christmas I think. Your love of JCrew when I started reading your blog years ago inspired mine, and now I work at the Georgetown store (dangerous). Merchandise generally goes on sale in stores for less than online as well. Come visit us!

    January 31, 2014/Reply
    • KS says:

      I was just going to write the same thing! I have the black/blush jersey dress and I got it for under $50. Sorry Belle!

      January 31, 2014/Reply
  2. DB says:

    Also, go Broncos!

    January 31, 2014/Reply
  3. Linda L says:

    Hi Belle – Denverite here, so excited you are going to the Super Bowl! Go Broncos!

    January 31, 2014/Reply
  4. Kirstin says:

    Go Broncos!

    January 31, 2014/Reply
  5. Erica says:

    Do the Zella Live in Leggings come in petite? I tried to look with no success. Thanks!

    January 31, 2014/Reply
    • LS says:

      I’m wondering the same! I’m in desperate need of new leggings but all of the brands that come highly rated are so long on me.

      January 31, 2014/Reply
  6. A says:

    I read that article on divorce in Smithsonian the other night before bed and thought the exact same thing! It is both depressing and completely fascinating. Perhaps not the best read for someone getting married next week, but that’s life, right?

    January 31, 2014/Reply
  7. Jennifer D says:

    Gotta say, Miss Nyong’o looks absolutely stunning in everything. Looking forward to her Oscar’s ensemble. I love Zella leggings . . . maybe because that was my grandmother’s name (and now my niece’s name). I’m sure she would love how former “foundation garments” have evolved 🙂

    January 31, 2014/Reply
  8. Lynn says:

    I’m not into football at all, but even I think going to the Superbowl would be effing awesome.

    January 31, 2014/Reply
  9. Autumn says:

    A fellow Bronco fan wishing you a great Super Bowl and yes to that championship!

    January 31, 2014/Reply
  10. Maggie says:

    I don’t understand how the diet v. feminism/”love yourself” conversation can be reduced to fit into such a small box. You’re either on team Gwyneth Paltrow or team Jennifer Lawrence and there doesn’t seem to be a middle. I do think Melissa McCarthy, Rebel Wilson, and Octavia Spencer should lose weight. But not because I’m offended by their bad example– because obesity results with long-long medical concerns. Why is it anti-feminist to want to have a long life?

    January 31, 2014/Reply
    • Helena says:

      Taking you at face value, why do you care about other people’s life spans? Are you suggesting that an overweight person is less healthy and therefore has higher healthcare costs that burden everyone? If so, do you apply this standard to people with chronic illnesses? At any rate, there is not an exact correlation between health and weight.

      January 31, 2014/Reply
      • Christine says:

        Not the OP but I do agree with her. The long-term health effects from obesity are known and include everything from diabetes and heart disease to needing a knee replacement because you’ve torn ligaments because you’re overweight. According to a recent study there is no such thing as “benign obesity,” i.e., obesity and healthiness are mutually exclusive. The higher healthcare costs end up getting distributed to all of us through higher premiums and higher deductibles. And yes, the same applies to chronic illnesses that can be controlled/contained through better diet, exercise, quitting smoking, etc. So if your diabetes can be controlled through a combination of medication, diet, exercise and weight loss, it would behoove you to make changes in order to be more healthy and thus lower your health risk and costs.

        January 31, 2014/Reply
      • Maggie says:

        Helena, It’s sad when a child loses their parent or someone loses their spouse. I want people to be healthy (not “skinny”) because I’m a compassionate person. People who are obese have significantly higher healthcare costs, $5,530 more per year than some in that “healthy” range. (By comparison, healthcare costs for smokers are $1,274 higher than a non-smoker.) (Sources: Mayo Clinic

        Do I apply this standard to everyone with chronic diseases, yes and no. I don’t fault someone for having asthma. I do fault them for not being on a doctor-prescribed plan to treat their condition. Do I think you need to feed into the diet industry with diet pills? No. I do think you need to eat fruits and vegetables and cut down on ice cream and big macs (my personal vice).

        This conversation was in the context of feminism: My assertion is that it isn’t anti-feminist to be healthy.

        January 31, 2014/Reply
    • Julianne says:

      Because you have no idea how healthy or not healthy someone is by looking at them. Obesity or being overweight does not automatically come with long range medical issues. That is a lie that has been perpetuated by the 65 billion dollar diet industry. For all diets other than the Look AHEAD diet, the average weight loss maintained over 2 years is less than 2 lbs. The most successful diet studied – called Look AHEAD – showed a 5% weight loss can be maintained for four years.

      Thin doesn’t mean healthy or long life. Fat doesn’t mean unhealthy and short life. People should be encouraged to be healthy, certainly. But you don’t know whether or not someone is healthy by looking at them, and should stop pretending like you do.

      January 31, 2014/Reply
  11. Catherine B says:

    I loved that Smithsonian article on divorce! It was so interesting to hear the historical aspects, instead of the usual depressing statistics (though they were in there, too, they weren’t the main focus of the article).

    The Slate article on commas alarms me. I love the Oxford comma, and now the regular comma is in danger? Say it isn’t so!

    January 31, 2014/Reply
  12. CH says:

    I think telling a woman what she should do with her body, whether that’s the implicit “this is the acceptable standard of female beauty” this is sickly pervasive in our culture or in the guise of “but your health!” concern-trolling, is absolutely anti-feminist.

    Seriously, I love JLaw, but what does it say about our media and our culture in general that she’s considered “so brave” or “so edgy” for saying she hates working out and loves fries? She’s still very slim, very toned, and Hollywood beautiful.

    January 31, 2014/Reply
  13. Meredith says:

    Have such a great time at the Super Bowl! What an amazing experience (and adventure!)
    I love the French Connection – Print Fit & Flare dress you posted.

    January 31, 2014/Reply
  14. LM says:

    So jealous…but hoping you have an awesome time.


    January 31, 2014/Reply
  15. Allison says:

    GO BRONCOS! That’s so exciting that you are going to the game, have fun!

    January 31, 2014/Reply
  16. Eve says:

    ” Personally, taking care of your health and working for a body you are proud of is empowering, not degrading.” Personally, I find the thought of objectifying myself to be degrading. Though this is a fashion blog so that paradigm is not unexpected. On a less snarky note thanks for posting clothing choices in all sizes. Much appreciated.

    January 31, 2014/Reply
  17. Anna Belle says:

    I hope you have a great time today at the game!! I’m predicting a Broncos win!

    I was also intrigued by the comma article! I find that some students actually feel the need to overuse the comma, like this: “I think, that the idea is good.” Drives me insane when they do this, but I suppose that may be more about non/restrictive clauses than commas per se? Anywho, commas be problems…

    February 2, 2014/Reply