Refresh & Renew

I have been blessed to own Bellacara for what will be 19 years this March. I’ve moved locations, opened a second store, closed a second store, and made small changes to the current space over the years. The store has seen several different chandeliers over the years and display tables have come and gone, but otherwise things have remained the same for 11 years. Not even the paint has changed.

Now that my children are older, I’ve begun working in the store more frequently. It’s amazing how you see things differently when you’re in a space day after day. I realized that all the bottles lined up like soldiers can feel very overwhelming. The lack of storage space also presented challenges, and as much as I have loved the custom gray colored walls, I’m ready for change.

When I started looking at options I kept gravitating to light and bright colors, whitewashed woods, and glass with brass accents. I want the space to feel lighter so that the product can shine.

I started painting the walls a Benjamin Moore color called Pewter. It’s essentially a white with a gray undertone. The minute it started to go up on the walls, I felt lighter. I selected new light fixtures with the help of a talented designer in Rehoboth (if anyone needs a designer for their beach house, call me and I’ll connect you). She also opened me up to the idea of wallpaper. I ultimately went with tone-on-tone seagrass because I wanted to avoid the noise of a print.

I also decided against a built-in unit. Retail is hard and you never know where you’ll end up. Fixtures I could take with me seemed more practical. Whitewashed wood, tone-on-tone white and oyster seagrass paper, brass elements, and glass ended up the final plan. Lighter, brighter, and airier is the vibe I’m hoping to achieve.

It’s been a bit challenging to keep the store open while I’m in the process of renovating, but when a girl needs her C. E. Ferulic serum, she does not want to hear about wallpaper! I wanted to thank you all for your support during this time and give you a sneak peek on the finishes. I hope you’ll all like the finished product!


  • The latest from Angela
I have been a beauty junkie for what seems like forever, but before I did anything about it, I went to law school. (Yes, my life is a little like the reverse of Legally Blonde.) Then, I worked as a prosecutor in Sonoma County after which I moved to the DC area with my husband in ’97. I served as Majority Counsel to the Senate Banking Committee followed by a year-long stint at a lobbying firm. You get the picture. It was then that I decided to act on my dream of becoming an entrepreneur. Finding my favorite beauty products proved to be impossible without stepping foot in a mall–the horror. So, I decided to bring my favorites to Alexandria. A few trips to New York and a flight to France and Bellacara was born in March 2000.

Located in historic Old Town Alexandria, for more than 17 years Bellacara has been Northern Virginia's preeminent boutique for high end cosmetic, skincare and haircare products. At Bellacara you will find premiere beauty products that have been carefully edited by the store’s owner, Angela Sitilides, who personally tests all the products sold in store. The boutique carries only the best product lines – Kiehl’s, Jouer, Dr. Dennis Gross, Christophe Robin, Moroccan Oil, Bumble & Bumble, Fresh, Molton Brown, Skinceuticals, Smashbox, Stila, Mario Badescu, Clarins, Dermalogica, Kevyn Aucoin, Kai, Child, St. Tropez, Smith and Cult, and many more.

1000 King Street
Alexandria, VA 22314



  1. Meaghan Meaghan says:

    I am SO excited to see the updates! It is incredibly challenging to stay open during a renovation so please take a deep breath and remind yourself that you’re doing it the hard way – but the right way for your clients and your business. Good luck!!

  2. Avatar KB says:

    Dear Angie,

    I follow your beauty posts weekly here on the West Coast, you are so blessed, keep working at your passions, they are shining trough in what you do. Congratulations on the renovation. Very exciting!! Now that my son is grown, i have taken the time to incorporate self care into my budget and have a beauty expert and skin specialist help me age as gracefully as possible. First, i go to see what you write on ASB, (Btw, you are a great writer) then take your information you give out with me while making my decisions and purchases. Best wishes for a positive 2019. KB

  3. Avatar Angela Sitildes says:


    I had no idea you were reading AS. I’m so humbled and if anyone has the lock on aging gracefully it is definitely you! Thank you for your sweet note. It means the world.

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