“Very large shoes to fill…”

Very large shoes to fill

I first met Elizabeth almost three years ago to the date. We met at Bittersweet Café after she answered my job listing. I remember realizing after speaking with her for five minutes that there was no way I wasn’t going to offer her the job. I also remember thinking there was no way I could afford her. She was talented, beautiful, and disarmingly friendly. After speaking with her for nearly an hour I resolved to find a way to bring her into the Bellacara family.  In the three years since, I have been blessed to call her a friend as well as an employee.

Very large shoes to fill

Those of you who have gotten to know Elizabeth know how special she is.  She probably greets you by name when you walk into the store and she knows what you use, what you should use, and what you are looking for before you do.  She always has a smile, a cheerful word, and a dedicated ear.  That’s why when she told me that after three beautiful years, she was moving on to pursue a career in bridal artistry…I was most obviously…devastated.

It seems inadequate to say she will be missed.  I liken it to the idea of someone who loses a limb and says “it will be missed.”  I have actually pondered what my decision would be given the option to lose my arm (my left one albeit) to losing Elizabeth and there are times when the answer doesn’t come straight away.  That is just how valuable she has become to Bellacara and how important she is to me personally.

One of the things that saddens me the most is the idea that I won’t enjoy her wit on a daily basis.  On more occasions than I can count, I have texted her at the end of a grueling day about some injustice or irritation only to be met with the perfect gif or meme. By the time I stopped laughing I had nearly forgotten what riled me up in the first place.

As of September, Elizabeth will no longer be with Bellacara.  So please come by the store and shop with her over the next week before she goes.  I know you will miss her too and will want to wish her luck in her new adventures.

She has garnered such admiration that when I covered for her one week while she was out with an injury, people who called would say “…that’s okay, I’ll call back on Monday when she’s in.”  You would think I took offense, but I didn’t.  I was happy that I had someone in store that people trusted.  I resolve to do that again.  But just like in the scene at the end of “The Devil Wears Prada,” they’ll have “some very large shoes to fill. I hope they know that.”

[Editor’s note: I hear from readers all the time, even those who don’t consider themselves “a makeup person,” just how much they enjoy Elizabeth’s charm here on Stylebook. We still have a couple of posts from her, one today (the latest edition of Splurge vs Save) and another next week, where she finally spills her own “Skincare Tell-All.” Elizabeth, it has been a true pleasure. xo]

Very large shoes to fill


  • 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


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