By Punch Pep Correspondent Elizabeth Fischer
Have you ever wanted to wear something that your friend owns?Â Have you watched it collect dust but just donâ€™t feel right asking to take it & keep it without paying?Â Have you aimed to adopt her style? Has she desired yours?Â I think it is safe to say we all have, at one point or another, wished for something from our friendâ€™s closet.Â A item you just werenâ€™t quick enough to grab on the last shopping spree.Â OrÂ one you just didn’t think to buy.Â Â Yet, while we secretly may want the item as our own, weâ€™ve commandeered enough strength to simply borrow the item and return it even when we know it is only collecting dust, has been outgrown or simply looks better on you.Â Well, what if you could convince that friend to join you & select it as 1 of 5 items she could exchange for items from anotherâ€™s closet â€“ a simple way to share each otherâ€™s style â€“ then DewDropDC is for you.
Last year, Kristine Thomas had an idea that began with a little clothing swap.Â In just a short time it evolved to include large seasonal swaps with themed intermittent swags.Â The purpose:Â add warmth, color, spunk, vivacity, or something off the beaten path by enhancing your wardrobe with exotic, beautiful, exquisite, vintage, and well-known brandsÂ harmonizing with local stealsÂ all while promoting sustainable living through fashion.Â What better way to keep the earth green than by sharing instead of throwing away.Â Sex and the City’s version of the â€œbagborroworsteal.comâ€ purse only better because you keep the slightly used to new itemsÂ for as long as you fancy.
The swap and now a little swag began last fall in Washington DC just behind The Phillips Museum at the intimate space known as the Hillyer Art Space.Â It was such a huge success, that a new & bigger venue had to be selected for the Spring/Summer swap.
In November, celebrated finds included:
An Yves Saint Laurent Scarf, an ethnic green printed dress (above), jeans to become shorts, wool pants with leopard print lining, ending with some vintage finds from Planet Maud.
The women who attended were impressed not only by the quality of items but the quantity as well.Â Some found the perfect holiday attire along with a holiday gift or two.Â While others found the ultimate reward or the missing link â€“ the perfect complement to an otherwise unbalanced wardrobe.
Fast forward to April and the second swap was held in Arlington at the Hilton.Â I attended this event and must say I was impressed with the selection, especially vintage.Â I found a swanky posh purse straight from the 70s and a lovely burnt orange dress that was a bit hippie and as light as a feather.
Every attendee brought 5 items from their closet, a difficult task for some, as we all know the pain in parting with even the simplest of stuff, even though at times it is liberating and we love the sense of accomplishment.Â After the freedom that comes from letting go, the excitement builds in anticipation of adding something new.
Those who attended were eagerly awaiting that sense of peace that comes from doing good & finding success.Â Doing good â€“ donating that which takes up space to those who will love it anew (other ladies/goodwill); finding success â€“ completing a look by reusing an item that otherwise would collect dust – keeping it green.
If the tables didnâ€™t quite quench your thirst for fashion or you needed the ideal accessory, the featured fashion artists were present in their pop-up shops with precious pieces at discounted prices.
Styles By Elo is “Versatile Styles” â€“ Jewelry, Accessories & Custom pieces – Shoes â€“ amazing attention-grabbing shoes â€“ like candy â€“ fun, flirty, stylish, chic, and trendy.Â I imagine placing them in my wardrobe as the centerpiece.Â In fact, as soon as I have surgery to correct the damage inflicted by tennis & soccer, I will be purchasing a pair immediately.Â For now, I love looking at the designs â€“ it reminds me of the movie â€œP.S. I Love You,â€ where she finds the inspiration and tenacity to design shoes after her husbandâ€™s death and his remarkable love notes.Â For more information visit: www.stylesbyelo.com.Â Elsa Charleswell, president, also has a facebook page: facebook.com/stylesbyelo.
Trendsetter Jewelry is described by Iris Perry, the owner & jewelry designer, as elegant, sophisticated & bold.Â I agree with all such adjectives.Â Â I love the color and the fact the necklaces provide character.Â I love vintage and the flower design adds the right amount of energy and vibrancy to any wardrobe.Â Some were heavy while others were light.Â Light is just right for my neck.Â All add just the right amount of color to spruce up any article of clothing that needs just a little â€œwowâ€ factor!Â For more information visit: www.trendsetterjewelrydesigns.com.
Closet Junkie is owned by Kelly and is a clothing & accessory boutique.Â The Boutique brings you an eclectic array of handmade accessoriesâ€”from jewelry to handbags, even candles!Â She sells a few vintage pieces as well.Â For all you frugal fashionistas, word on the street is her items start at $8.00!Â For more information visit: www.facebook.com/shop.closetjunkie.
â€œThreeâ€™s a charmâ€ â€“ Charmed Boutique, owned by Savannah Powell, is a fashionable, yet affordable and contemporary mobile and online boutique for women, mommies, and little girls offering a variety of styles.Â Versatile is the way I would describe the offerings.Â Savannahâ€™s pieces can either complete a look or be that piece that can become several looks. This is the place I picked up a smart, stylish & chic watermelon colored dress for $20.00.Â The bonus, besides its versatility, is that it was made in the USA.Â I love it and have already worn it paired with a simple belt as well as paired with black stockings, boots and a sweater.Â It will take me from summer to fall to winter and back again.Â For more information visit: www.charmedoneonline.com and www.facebook.com/CharmedBoutiqueLLC.
Brown Sugar Designs is a line of handcrafted jewelry made of natural gemstones, created to express your unique personality.Â According to designer and owner, Naleli Askew: â€œOur hand crafted jewelry is elegant, uniquely one of a kind, sophisticated and inspired by the belief that your individuality is what makes you, YOU! Â Treat yourself to one without the hefty price, but youâ€™ll never stop there, Brown Sugar is meant to fulfill your never ending sweet tooth! Â Dress our bracelets up for a formal occasion or use your imagination to create endless everyday looks.Â Our designs are made with semi-precious gemstones, rhinestones, mixed metals, wood, & whole lot of SUGAR!â€Â To make your own creation visit: www.etsy.com/shop/BrownSugarDesignz or www.facebook.com/BrownSugarDesigns.Â You can also participate in the home soiree at: www.wix.com/naleliaskew/brownsugardesigns#!trunk-show-hostess.
Grace & Luxâ€™s mission is to bring luxurious handmade Cambodian silk to America and, in turn, give back to the Cambodian community.Â All of Grace & Lux silk is fair trade.Â The inspiration for owner Christine Owen came from her trip to Cambodia as well as from color and nature.Â â€œSome of our products (such as the rose & chocolate 100% Cambodian silk scarves) are not only fun colors, but they are literally found in natureâ€“the dyes were created by gathering various natural materials from around the local villages (bark & insects), then boiled to create the vibrant colors.â€Â G&L only buy from Cambodian vendors who give their employees a fair living wage.Â They have met with our vendors & toured the weaving centers where our silk products are created.Â For more information or to buy silk scarves, ties, pillows & tablemats visit: www.graceandlux.com.
A satisfying day for all!
(All photos for Tangerine Swap by Kristine Thomas)
Skip ahead toÂ theÂ last day of June, the Tangerine Tango Swap took place in Bethesda, Maryland â€“ on the Saturday after the derecho.Â Amazingly it was open & provided much needed air conditioning for those without power.Â The inspiration behind the name â€“ the runway shows for the spring 2012 collection.
Per Kristine Thomas: “100-degree weather and post-storm craziness didnâ€™t stop Dewdrop swappers from coming Vapiano.Â The swappers enjoyed delicious drinks and swapping fun.â€
The afternoon started off with fabulous raffle prizes donated by Bethesda Row retailers and beyond. Â Most everyone was just a wee bit jealous of the winner of the Trina Turk pendant necklace worth $250 donated by Urban Chic; and of the one swapper who won not one, not two, but FOUR raffle prizesâ€”a Jaleo gift card, an American Tap Room gift card, a Paper Source private workshop class, AND a private Tango dance lessonâ€””she definitely has a lot of date nights up ahead.”
The crowd rushed in as soon as they got the green light. Â Everyone had a great time!Â Kristine and her team loved hearing comments like â€œquality clothing,â€ â€œfriendly crowdâ€ and â€œlovely experience!â€Â “Thatâ€™s what DewdropDC aims to do!”
A glorious afternoon had byÂ all.
With an open mind â€“ â€œnothing is impossible, the word itself says Iâ€™M POSSIBLEâ€ Audrey Hepburn â€“ find your inner creative child, put your wallet away, leave the traditional store-fronts behind, clean out your closet, and join DewDropDC for the next event.Â This is your runway to your distinctive fashion style.Â You might just surprise yourself by discoveringâ€¦ unearthing â€¦ unique & complimentary treasures. Or you just may convince your friend to part with that article of clothing you have been eyeing for months that she no longer wears.Â You can follow dewdropdc on facebook & twitter.Â For information, visit: Â www.dewdropdc.com.
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Attorney Elizabeth Fischer is Punch Pep Correspondent. She is working as an Entrepreneur, Lawyer and Student (environmental studies), covering events for Pamela’s Punch as a generalist correspondent. When she is not working, studying or playing soccer or tennis, she is walking her pups, traveling the globe, running marathons, and enjoying all DC has to offer. Contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org.