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About Style Swap

"Style-conscious women find a way to recession-proof their closets."

In the not-so-distant past, women were lining up for the latest IT bag with a price tag to rival their mortgage payment. Can you imagine Clueless’s Cher turning up her perky little nose at a half-off sale? “As if!” Purchasing with caution has become the fashionista’s reality these days with everyone looking for more creative ways to save without sacrificing style.

Most women have experience sharing their closets with sisters, roommates or their best friends which inevitably leads to some trading along the way. In the last few years, with a waning economy and the collective effort to recycle and reuse, more and more women are hosting “swap” parties at their homes.

After reading an article about the growing trend of “swishing” parties in England, Jess James had a thought – why not take “swapping” to the next level? She imagined a “Style Swap” event where women of all ages, sizes and with a range of styles could come together to share their closets while they “economize and socialize.” Starting in July 2007, Jess James and her partner Shannon Dunne of James + Dunne Styling hosted the first bi-monthly “Style Swap” where women arrived with a few clothing items and accessories and left with items from other fashionistas’ closets. Each guest is given personalized tags to mark the items of their choice leaving their sartorial karmic fate to be determined by drawings and for the most coveted items of the night – a good old- fashioned game of musical chairs!

Prompted by interest from North Carolina Signature / Our State Magazine, Jess joined forces with her friend and Business Development Consultant Rachel McPherson to take Style Swap across the Southeast and beyond.

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