Thursday, March 24, 2011

Fashionista Style in Recessionista Times

On Wednesday, March 16, 2011, Columbia welcomed its first-ever Style Swap! Style Swap is an event started by Style Girl Jess James in Wilmington, North Carolina to allow women to come together and share their closets and support a worthy cause. (Proceeds and items left from the swap were donated to The Women’s Shelter.) Coordinated by Flock & Rally, sponsored by VanJean and Pout! and hosted by The Shop Tart herself, Anne Postic, it was held at MoMo’s Bistro on Devine Street - which they were kind enough to close for the day!

Style Girl and Style Swap creator, Jess James

Anne Postic of Shop Tart

Gift bags donated by Pout! for V.I.P. guests

James got the idea for Style Swap after hearing about similar events taking place overseas. Soon after moving to Wilmington from Pennsylvania, she began her Style Girl column for the Star-News. It was during this time that she began building what we now know as Style Swap. For the mere cost of parting with one clothing item and an accessory, you have the potential to find Dolce and Gabanna, Manolo Blahnik shoes and Prada bags, which was the case at this 'swap'.

"In this penny-pinching economy, is there such a thing as guilt-free shopping?" James quips on her website. "Finding $50 J Brand jeans and a $20 Tracy Reese dress doesn't feel so bad. Coming home with something you love in exchange for something you no longer want - priceless."

At registration, everyone was able to purchase a charity raffle ticket to be entered into a drawing - and just look at some of the prizes!

The display of all the amazing prizes for raffle winners.

$250 gift certificate to VanJean

2 $50 gift certificates

Nana by Sally clutch, worth $65

$50 gift certificate to Revente with purse and sunglasses

Austral salon shampoo, haircut & blow style by owner Tim Shealy plus 2 products

Freshwater Keshi pearls with freshwater freeform nugget pearls and 22k gold-filled chain from Theodosia, worth $325

Kicks Exceptional Shoes gift certificate for $50

Illuminations MedSpa NEOCUTIS system

Sponsored swap outfit valued at $146, Bohemian

Sponsored gift from Pink Sorbet

Sponsored raw silk skirt, LaRoque

Businesses were also able to set up vendor tables and sell merchandise. There was everything from shoes sold by Kicks, lovely Lilly Pulitzer and Carolina Cup items from Pink Sorbet, jewelry by Theodosia (located in Charleston), beauty items from Pout!, Tory Burch from VanJean and vintage items from Style Girl vintage collection, represented by James herself. Also in attendance were representatives from AUSTRAL salon and Illumination MedSpa to pass out product and service information.

Retailers setting up vendor tables prior to the event.

Lanvin dress, for sale as part of the Style Girl vintage collection

Pink Sorbet



This event was a fashionista's dream, not only for the wardrobe updates and making of new friends, but doing it all in the name of a very worthy cause. Its giving back and getting something in return all in the name of fashion and philanthropy - what could be better than that?

Ashleigh and Jess James at Style Swap

For more information on Style Swap and where Jess James and her team will be heading next, visit her site and and subscribe to the Style Girl newsletter.

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