Salvation Army Women’s Auxiliary’s 2018 Fashion Show And Luncheon Plans Revealed By Chair Lisa Singleton At Eiseman Jewels

Nobody at Eiseman Jewels seemed to notice that ¾ moon hovering over NorthPark, Zeke Elliott’s legal woes or even the World Series on Wednesday, November 1. They were there to celebrate plans for the Salvation Army Women’s Auxiliary‘s 2018 Fashion Show and Luncheon.

Marvin and Lisa Singleton, Margot Perot and Betsy and Richard Eiseman

As Eiseman proprietor Richard Eiseman took a knee upon seeing the Salvation Army Women’s Auxiliary founder Margot Perot, he quickly offered the knee recognition to his wife Betsy Eiseman.

Candace Winslow and Nikki Webb

Joyce Fox

In another part of the showroom were Joanna Clarke, Nikki Webb and Candace Winslow. It would later be discovered to the wine-flute sipping crowd including SAWA President Betsy Willis, Ramona Jones, Barbara Sypult, Joyce Fox and Kim and Greg Hext, that Nikki and Candace would be joined by Kim Quinn and Merry Wyatt for underwriting efforts for the annual Salvation Army Women’s Auxiliary’s 2018  Fashion Show and Luncheon at the Meyerson on Wednesday, May 9.

Barbara Sypult, Marvin Singleton, Margot Perot and Ramona Jones

As an incentive to rally the troops, Major Barbara Rich reported that last May’s fashion extravaganza had just barely missed its goal of $1M.  

Needless to say, SAWA Fashion Show Chair Lisa Singleton didn’t drop a note and warned the group that she and fashion show producer Jan Strimple would be checking closets for gently used clothes for the fundraiser.

Jan Strimple

Anne Davidson

Immediately Presenting Sponsor Anne Davidson announced that Lisa and Jan were editing her closet the upcoming weekend.

JUST IN: 30th Anniversary Mad Hatter’s Tea Theme, Date And Plans Revealed

Last night 2018 Mad Hatter’s Tea Chair Venise Stuart announced plans for the annual fundraiser benefiting the Women’s Council of the Dallas Arboretum‘s A Woman’s Garden at the Dallas Arboretum.

Melissa Lewis

Venise Stuart

On the ground level of Tootsies, Venise revealed that the 30th anniversary would be a salute to the grandeur and elegance of a bygone era.

A Garden By The Sea*

Women’s Council of the Arboretum President Melissa Lewis stressed it was not a Gatsby-period theme. Rather think of the Vanderbilts summered in Newport at The Breakers, Marble House and Rough Point, when the magnificent estates enjoyed the cool breezes.  

To visually explain the feel, Melissa and Venise unveiled the graphic designed by Lynn Dealey that benefited the “A Garden By The Sea” theme perfectly.

Serving at honorary chair will be Linda Burk, who has been a longtime supporter of the Arboretum.

The fashion show of Tootsies fashions and luncheon will take place on Thursday, April 12, at the Arboretum under the direction of Jan Strimple.

As for the chapeau judging details, stay tuned.

* Graphic credit: Lynn Dealey

JUST IN: 34th Annual St. Valentine’s Day Luncheon And Fashion Show Theme And Awardees Announced

2018 Saint Valentine Luncheon and Fashion Show Co-Chairs Roz Colombo and Nancy Gopez gathered their gal pals and Leukemia and Lymphoma Society of North Texas supporters together last night at Amy Turner’s. The occasion was to announce more details about the 34th annual fundraiser.

Roz Colombo, Amy Turner and Nancy Gopez*

Heather Randall and Kristen Sanger*

As previously reported, the whole kit-and-kaboodle is moving to NorthPark Center’s Center Park Garden in a mammoth, see-thru tent on Thursday, February 8, with Jan Strimple coordinating the show. Serving as honorary chair will be NorthPark’s First Lady Nancy Nasher. Roz and Nancy managed to get 2017 Saint V-Day Chair Heather Randall to serve as their advisor.

The news of the night was the reveal of the theme “Sculpting A Cure!” and the 2018 award recipients. Receiving the Lynda Adleta Heart of Gold Award will be Mona Carlton Stogner and Grey Stogner “for their dedication towards finding cures.”

As for the Tom Landry Character Award, seven-year-old Caitlin Johnson will be presented with the award named after the late Dallas Cowboys coach. The back story on Caitlin is pretty darn amazing. But stay tuned. It will be revealed in the days to come.

* Photo provided by Nancy Gopez

MySweetCharity Opportunity: 2017 Equest Women’s Auxiliary Luncheon And Fashion Show

According to 2017 Equest Women’s Auxiliary Luncheon and Fashion Show Chairman Beth Thoele,

Beth Thoele (File photo)

Equest Therapeutic Horsemanship was founded in 1981 and was the first riding center in Texas for children and adults with all types of physical, cognitive, emotional and learning disabilities. One of the organization’s most important sources for funding is the annual Equest Women’s Auxiliary Luncheon and Fashion presented by Highland Park Village.

We have selected “Reins of Hope” as this year’s theme for the luncheon that will be at Brook Hollow Golf Club on Tuesday, October 3. The event will include presentation of the Equest Award for Community Service to Elisa Summers and Heather Washburne whose family has been longtime supporters of the organization. In addition, Equest stalwart and philanthropist Robyn Conlon is serving as honorary chairman and will be recognized for her contributions to the community.

Elisa Summers (File photo)

Heather Washburne (File photo)

Robyn Conlon (File photo)

Jan Strimple (File photo)

The day’s activities will include a runway fashion show produced by the renowned Jan Strimple, featuring clothes from Highland Park Village retailers, seated luncheon and raffle.  We will reveal the participating fashion partners in early September.

Help us empower, enrich and educate through horses by visiting

Equest Women’s Auxiliary Fashion Show And Luncheon List Of Highland Park Village Merchants Participating In The Annual Fundraiser Revealed

Equest Women’s Auxiliary Fashion Show and Luncheon Chair Beth Thoele just revealed the list of Highland Park Village merchants for the Equest fundraiser “Reins of Hope” at Brook Hollow on Tuesday, October 3.

Lela Rose (File photo)

Hadleigh Shaikh (File photo)

Equest finale (File photo)

Six of ’em are returning with the latest fashions of the season — Carolina Herrera, Escada, Etro, Hadleigh’s, Lela Rose and Market. Joining the veteran retailers will be first-timer Veronica Beard.

The fashion show will be produced by Jan Strimple with Robyn Conlon serving as honorary chair.

The Salvation Army Women’s Auxiliary Fashion Show And Luncheon Had Guests Shopping And Re-Invented Fashions On The Runway

Even before the official open got underway, the cars were lined up for The Salvation Army Women’s Auxiliary Fashion Show and Luncheon at the Meyerson on Tuesday, May 2. Perhaps the reason was the sneak peek of the Chic Boutique of “experienced” clothes and accessories.

Joyann King

Surprisingly, most guests headed to the Opus Restaurant, where the silent auction was taking place. It didn’t take long for the smart shoppers to bird-dog the goodies on the upper level where folks like Tracy Lange, Dee Simmons and others checked out the racks curated by Tootsies. Among the shoppers was Executive Editor Joyann King. When asked if she had missed attending the Met’s red carpet the night before, she smiled and didn’t hesitate —“No.”

Despite a scheduled VIP group photo scheduled for 10, it didn’t happen. Event Chair D’Andra Simmons-Lock was behind the scenes taking care of last-minute details; Majors Barbara and Jonathan Rich were at the front managing things along with Women’s Auxiliary President Kathie King and daughter Joyann.

Suzanne Palmlund, Dee Simmons and Marian Barnes

Billie Leigh Rippey

Ramona Jones and Julie Patrick

Barbara Daseke

Louise Griffeth and Carol Seay

As the crowd including Bobbie Sue Williams, Linda Custard, Chris Hite, Mary Clare Finney, Christie Carter, Ruth Altshuler, Annette Simmons, Connie Carreker, Barbara Daseke, Lynne Sheldon, Angie Kadesky, Pat McEvoy, Suzanne Palmlund,  Marian Barnes, BJ Ward and Louise Griffeth grew, some decided to move into the McDermott Concert Hall. Love the Meyerson, but time and time again guests struggled to find the rows. Perhaps the grand old lady hall needs a little refreshing to make seat finding less challenging.

Dee Collins Torbert

Another problem was the seating of Dee Collins Torbert, who relies on a wheelchair. Her assignment was on the front row of the Orchestra Terrace. While the location provide an ideal place to observe the stage, it also required her to leave her wheelchair and for two gentlemen to help her carefully navigate the three steps down to the front row.

Finally, the chimes rang and Event Producer Jan Strimple’s voice called all to their seats. The lights dimmed. Serving as a backdrop for the “Fashion Is Art…You Are The Canvas!” theme was a wonderful, mammoth curved screen.

D’Andra Simmons Lock

Kicking things off was D’Andra, who told how this event was her dream come true. It has been rewarding and humbling. Recognizing Honorary Co-Chairs Elisa Summers and Heather Washburne, D’Andra told how she and Elisa’s and Heather’s mother Vicki Howland had “prayed together many times” on whether the girls should be part of the fundraiser. It must have worked, because the Al G. Hill Jr. family (BTW, their dad is Al G. Hill Jr.) and the family business — Highland Park Village — served as presenting sponsor. It was a first for the event to have a presenting sponsor.

Kathie then introduced SAWA Founder Margot Perot to present the Margot Perot Award to Ramona Jones. From serving as president of the Women’s Auxiliary of The Salvation Army in 2003 to making and taking food to the Carr P. Collins Center every Thursday for the past 15 years, Ramona has exemplified the purpose of the Margot Perot Award.  

Margot Perot, Ramona Jones and Kathie King

D’Andra then returned to the podium to introduce a video testimony revealing that she had been a victim of domestic abuse with her husband, Jeremy Lock, at her side. While obviously heartrending and sincere, some in the audience wondered who the perpetrator of D’Andra’s suffering was. But the reason for her admission was to support the Salvation Army’s work with such victims.

Following the video, Major Barbara alluded to the fact that the Salvation Army would soon be announcing more news about its domestic violence efforts and how the Army continues its efforts to help those in need.

Simone Garman

With that, cellist Simone Garman performed “Pray,” while a beautiful photomontage by Jeremy of Army clients was displayed on the curved screen behind her. Barbara returned to the podium to thank D’Andra, Jeremy, Kathie and her husband Randy King, Joyann and all involved.

It was a nice transition from Jeremy’s and Simon’s presentation to Joyann’s sharing tidbits about the upcoming fashion season.

  • Think pink
  • Bright, modern floral designs
  • Blue jeans combined with other non-traditional pieces
  • Light, frothy white dress
  • A brand new bag
  • Stripes
  • Blushes on eyes and cheeks and striking blue eye shadow

The Salvation Army Fashion Show

The Salvation Army Fashion Show

The Salvation Army Fashion Show

The Salvation Army Fashion Show

The Salvation Army Fashion Show

The Salvation Army Fashion Show

The Salvation Army Fashion Show

The Salvation Army Fashion Show

The Salvation Army Fashion Show

The Salvation Army Fashion Show finale

It was then time for the fashion show of gently used clothes that had been adapted for today’s hottest looks courtesy of Strimple’s direction, followed by lunch in the lobby giving organizers enough time to bid on ‘em before the silent auction ended at 2 p.m.

Check out the countless fashions that were on the runway and on their way to new owners at MySweetCharity Photo Gallery.

Sold-Out Alert!: The Salvation Army Women’s Auxiliary Fashion Show And Luncheon

D’Andra Simmons Lock (File photo)

Jan Strimple (File photo)

Lucky are those who bought their tickets for Tuesday’s Salvation Army Women’s Auxiliary’s Fashion Show And Luncheon because all the individual tickets have been snapped up. That means they’ll get first opportunity to check out the “experienced clothes” for sale in the Chic Boutique, as well as seeing how Event Chair D’Andra Simmons Lock and fashion show producer Jan Strimple have created a new look to the presentation of clothes in the McDermott Hall.

At this point, there is still hope…sorta. Either take a chance and become a sponsor, or twiddle your thumbs until you can check out the clothes, including a sample sale with limited availability from Stanley Korshak’s bridal salon at the WEARhouse Sale (9216 Harry Hines Blvd.) on Thursday (1 p.m. to 8 p.m.) and Friday and Saturday (10 a.m. to 3 p.m.).

JUST IN: KidneyTexas Inc.’s Runway Report Co-Chairs Plan “Transforming Lives” With Tootsies Fashions, Awards And Much More

KidneyTexas Inc.’s 2017 Runway Report Co-Chairs Christine Martin and Susan Russell have announced plans for the Tuesday, September 26, fashion show at Brook Hollow Golf Club with Linda and Steve Ivy serving as honorary co-chairs.

Linda and Steve Ivy (File photo)

This year’s theme which will be “Transforming Lives” was revealed in the logo designed by Lynn Townsend Dealey.

The Runway Report’s “Transforming Lives”

The theme was especially poignant for KidneyTexas Inc. President Andrea Alcorn, whose mother is “one of the oldest kidney transplant recipients.”

Longtime supporter Sue Goodnight will receive the First Annual Lifetime Achievement Award and Natalie Taylor will be presented with the Sue Goodnight Award.

The Over the Top Awards will be presented to Tootsies’ Dustin Holcomb and Nerissa von Helpenstill and Dee Lincoln.

The Tootsies’ team will be providing the fashions with the show being produced by flaming-haired Jan Strimple.

In addition to a tea in October featuring Royal Chef Darren McGrady, there will be an event in November honoring Men of Kidney.

The 2017 beneficiaries are scheduled to receive the following amounts:

  • Parkland Foundation — $30,500 for a kidney dialysis unit,
  • Baylor Health Care Foundation — $30,000 for a five-year study of kidney transplants, 
  • UT Southwestern Medical Center — $29,925 for kidney-related research,
  • Children’s Medical Center Foundation — $20,500 for hemodialysis and blood pressure machines,
  • Camp Reynal — $19,500 and
  • Texas Health Resources Foundation —$14,214 for a hemodialysis machine.

Information about tickets and underwriting opportunities can be found here!

* Graphic provided by KidneyTexas Inc.

JUST IN: 33rd St. Valentine’s Day Luncheon And Fashion Show Designers, Patron Party And Raffle Item Plans Revealed

2017 St. Valentine’s Day Luncheon and Fashion Show*

With the Christmas holidays in the rear view mirror, retailers are filling shelves with all types of sweetheart deals getting folks in the mood for St. Valentine’s Day. And this year the stars are truly in alignment for the 33rd Annual St. Valentine’s Day Luncheon and Fashion Show. Unlike many years past, this year’s “Affair of the Heart” will indeed take place on Tuesday, February 14!

Nancy and Richard Rogers (File photo)

Presented by Nancy C. and Richard R. Rogers, the extravaganza will take place once again at the Meyerson with the fashion show under the direction of event producer Jan Strimple.

And, boy, has red-haired Jan been busy. She’s been scurrying around Highland Park Village cherry-picking the very best from Brunello Cucinelli, St. John, Market, Escada, Etro and Carolina Herrera.

Heather Randall (File photo)

While on the subject of Highland Park Village, in addition to being the fashion show and luncheon sponsor, HPV’s Jimmy Choo will be the site of the patron party on Tuesday, February 7, from 6:30 to 8 p.m. In addition to a percentage of Jimmy Choo sales benefiting the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society of North Texas fundraiser that night, the luncheon/fashion show raffle items will be revealed and chances will be available for purchase. Word has it that trips are gonna be included in the items with American Airlines serving as the “official travel sponsor.” Just imagine what a hit it would be to win a trip to give your special Valentine that evening over a cozy dinner!

Event Chair Heather Perttula Randall has arranged to use “two floors for the luncheon. Priority placement for the Main Floor for the luncheon will be based on giving level and time of receipt of your contract.”

The champagne reception will start bubbling at 10 a.m., so lock down your ticket. Then splurge and buy yourself a red, hot outfit to the St. V-Day lunch.


Mad Hatter’s “Under The Tuscan Sun” Reveal Party Had Loads Of Surprises And Rachel Zoe Name Dropping

With just five months to prepare their dazzling headpieces, the Maddest Hatters gathered at Tootsies on Thursday, November 17. Besides celebrating any occasion connected with the Women’s Council of the Dallas Arboretum, the guests were there to learn the details for the Thursday, April 27th Mad Hatter’s Tea at the Arboretum.

Dyann Skelton, Melissa Lewis and Emilynn Wilson

Yes, the date was important because, unlike a few years back when guests shivered in near-freezing temperatures, Women’s Council President Melissa Lewis and Event Chair Linda Spina picked a date in late April when frost will be long gone. It also allows more time to prepare those hats for showing and competing.

Linda Spina and Lynn Dealey

Under The Tuscan Sun*

But the big news was the event’s theme. This news was the one that warmed the hearts and glue guns of hat designers. Drum roll. The theme for the 29th Mad Hatter’s Tea will be “Under the Tuscan Sun.” No wonder the gals picked a sun-friendly date and artist Lynn Dealey’s sunflowers artwork took full advantage of the theme.

But wait, there was still more news and it was a real head turner. Thanks to Tootsies’ Nerissa von Helpenstill and the Mad Hatters brain trust, super-duper special guest will be fashion designer, author, business woman, nuclear scientist Rachel Zoe. (Okay, so maybe not that last one about the nuclear scientist, but she’s everything else and so much more.) Is anyone surprised that Mad Hatters fashion sponsor Tootsies carries Rachel’s line of fashions? Nah!

Sharla Bush and Amy Warren

While a couple of the guests (mostly guys) looked a little baffled about the younger crowd getting downright thrilled over Rachel’s participation, they’ll wise up by the big day, especially if they check out The Zoe Report.

Adding to the namedropping of the occasion, it was revealed that Amy Warren and her daughter Amanda Hill would serve as honorary co-chairs thanks to their buddy Mad Hatter’s Co-Chair/Warren buddy/McKinney shop keeper Sharla Bush.

But there was even more good news. Individual tickets are available now at $350 via the Women’s Council website. Later in the spring a limited number of tickets will be made available for $250. But who wants to wait and take a chance on missing the fashion show produced by Jan Strimple, a seated luncheon overlooking the Arboretum grounds, and being seen on the scene?

Proceeds from the event will “grow and maintain A Woman’s Garden.”

* Graphic courtesy of Lynn Dealey

The Salvation Army Women’s Auxiliary’s 2017 Fashion Show And Luncheon Chair D’Andra Simmons Reveals Surprises For Fundraiser

Try as she might, D’Andra Simmons cannot do anything without sparkle, splash and special. In this case, it was The Salvation Army Women’s Auxiliary’s 2017 Fashion Show And Luncheon on Wednesday, September 21, at Market.

It was pretty obvious to area shoppers that something was up with the mini-billboard graphic promoting the 20th anniversary of the SAWA fundraiser.

Barbara Rich, Elisa Summers, D'Andra Simmons and Kathie King

Barbara Rich, Elisa Summers, D’Andra Simmons and Kathie King

Then when folks like Elisa Summers, Heather Washburne, The Salvation Army DFW Metroplex Majors Barbara and Jonathan Rich, The Salvation Army Women’s Auxiliary President Kathie King and D’Andra posed in front of the billboard, it was definitely hints of what’s to come. And why did that Lynn Dealey illustration include a copy of Harpers Bazaar?

Inside Market, staffers gathered in groups as guests joined among the goodies and what goodies they were.

Vicki Howland and Kim Rozell

Vicki Howland and Kim Rozell

Carol Seay and Jimmy Westcott

Carol Seay and Jimmy Westcott

In the back showroom there was a mammoth graphic in a gold frame about The Salvation Army DFW Metroplex fundraiser, but it would wait until the guests cocktailed in the main room with Ramona Jones, Mary Potter, Lynn McBee, Vicki Howland, Kim Rozell, Jeri Kleiman, Kunthear Mam-Douglas, Carol Seay, Jimmy Westcott, Ann and David Carruth and Warehouse Couture Co-Chairs Toni Turner and JoAnna Turner.

Then the guests were herded into the back show room where a floor-to-ceiling frame with the graphic stood. As Elisa and Heather slipped behind a curtain surrounding the frame, husband Ray Washburne leaned against the wall across the way.

Joyann King

Joyann King

Then the reveals were underway with D’Andra and Major Barbara telling of the many ways that The Salvation Army Women’s Auxiliary and The Salvation Army DFW Metroplex were doing more than ringing bells with kettles during the holidays.

D’Andra then announced this year’s fundraiser on Tuesday, May 2, would be a first in many ways. Instead of being held at a country club or hotel, it would be at the Meyerson. It would also be the first time that a national media group would be involved. D’Andra and Kathie King had arranged for Harpers Bazaar to not only be part of the festivities, but Kathie’s daughter, Editor Joyann King, will also emcee.

Then the reveal of the honorary co-chairs was made as the huge graphic slid to the side and the sisters stood in the frame.

Carlos Nicholls

Carlos Nicholls

The final announcement was the reveal of the event’s theme. Against a black canvas, artist Carlos Nicholls dipped his brush in yellow paint and wrote, “Fashion is art. You are the canvas.”

But thank heaven not everything would be different for the 20th anniversary. Fashion show producer Jan Strimple will once again be coordinating the runway action. What some folks do not realize is the behind-the-scenes preparation. Once clothes are turned in, SAWA volunteers sort through the merchandise. In the meantime Jan does far more than match the donated clothes with models for the runway.  Some of the items are from bygone seasons and need some updating. That’s where Jan’s wizardry comes into place. Perhaps a hem needs to be shortened, or the ruffles on the cuffs need to be taken off, or a belt needs to be added to accentuate the waist. Jan goes through the hundreds of donated outfits, picks out the showstoppers and has them refreshed where there is need.

D’Andra stressed the need for donations. After all, the luncheon’s Chic Boutique, where some of North Texas’ most fashionable types scour the bargains, is a key to the fundraising success.

Speaking of the donations, Jan reported that the deadline for turning in clothes is earlier this year. “We’re doing pick-ups and taking dropoffs all fall, hoping to have the majority of donation in by the end of January.” Clothes and accessories may be dropped off at Tootsies.

Grovel Alert: Equest Women’s Auxiliary Luncheon And Style Show

Sure, it’s damp, but the temperatures are so user friendly. That’s especially true for retailers, who are stocking fall and winter goodies like cashmere sweaters, snugly coats and high-strutting boots.

Alice and Olivia boot (File photo)

Alice and Olivia boot (File photo)

Evidently that feeling of cooler times are just around the corner has inspired the horse-loving, fashionistas to get their places at the Equest Women’s Auxiliary Luncheon and Style Show on Tuesday, October 4, at Brook Hollow Golf Club.

Fashion producer Jan Strimple has been working with presenting sponsor Highland Park Village and its merchants like Akris, Alice and Olivia, Carolina Herrera, Etro, Lela Rose, Market and St. John for what will be on the runway benefiting the Equest program.

Just heard that perhaps it’s because of the drop in temps that tickets are starting to get scarce, so contact Event Chair Kara Axley for your ticket. Then head to your closet and clear out your old winter duds. Because after this fundraiser you’re gonna need more room for the new looks.

JUST IN: D’Andra Simmons Announces Deets About The Salvation Army Women’s Auxiliary Fashion Show And Luncheon

D’Andra Simmons’ summer vacation was nonexistent. For months, she’s been working around the clock on two mammoth undertakings — chairing The Salvation Army Women’s Auxiliary 2017 Fashion Show and Luncheon and co-chairing Cancer Blows. Both will take place at the Meyerson within a week of each other.

Elisa Summers, Barbara and Jonathan Rich, Heather Washburne and D'Andra Simmons

Elisa Summers, Barbara and Jonathan Rich, Heather Washburne and D’Andra Simmons

Wednesday night she unleashed news about the fundraiser for The Salvation Army DFW Metroplex Command. While more deets will be provided in the days to come about the jammed gathering at Highland Park Village’s Market and typical over-the-top reveal, here is a rundown of the news.

Being a smart business woman, D’Andra had already raised $125,000 from two donations — $50,000 and $75,000. Now for more biggie news that Ms. D unveiled last night.

First the showing of “experienced clothes” will take place on Tuesday, May 2, at the Meyerson. But you already knew that. Just wanted to refresh those brain cells. And remember it’s not going to take place on the traditional Monday.

Joyann King

Joyann King

Second, the event will have a national sponsor — Harper’s Bazaar with Editor Joyann King as the event’s emcee. King trivia: Joyann’s mom just happens to be The Salvation Army Women’s Auxiliary’s President Kathie King’s daughter.

Third, the honorary co-chairs will be sisters Elisa Summers and Heather Washburne.

Fourth, fashionable producer Jan Strimple will be orchestrating the fashion extravaganza.

Fifth, the theme for the event will be “Fashion is art. You are the canvas.”

Sixth, clean out those closets now and drop them off at Tootsie’s. But if you have too many to fit in your SUV, give SAWA a call at 214.637.8121 and they’ll send an 18-wheeler over.


MySweetCharity Opportunity: Equest Women’s Auxiliary Fashion Show And Luncheon

According to Equest Women’s Auxiliary Fashion Show And Luncheon Chair Kara Axley and Auxiliary President Di Johnston,

Kara Axley and Di Johnston (File photo)

Kara Axley and Di Johnston (File photo)

“Equest has enhanced the lives of children and adults using horses to bring hope and healing through equine assisted therapies for thirty five years. The annual Equest Women’s Auxiliary Fashion Show and Luncheon, Riding High, will be Tuesday, October 4, at Brook Hollow Golf Club and will continue the 35th anniversary celebration by raising much-needed funds for Equest’s unique therapy programs.

“Today, Equest is the leader in equine assisted therapy and serves hundreds of riders annually. These riders include those with cerebral palsy and autism as well as orthopedic ailments. Additionally, Equest serves our country’s brave veterans through our ‘Horses for Heroes’ program.

“When Equest Women’s Auxiliary founder Louise Griffeth started the organization thirty years ago, Equest was known as Freedom Ride and many people were unfamiliar with the cause and how to become supporters. A lot has changed in the past three decades as Equest has received national recognition for its work and the Women’s Auxiliary is a thriving organization comprised of hundreds of dedicated women who work tirelessly to provide invaluable funding.

Lindalyn Adams and Louise Griffeth (File photo)

Lindalyn Adams and Louise Griffeth (File photo)

“Riding High will be a fun-filled day of fashion, great food and a glimpse into the workings of Equest programming. Fashion icon Jan Strimple will produce the fashion show with some of Highland Park Village’s most noted international retailers showing their collections.  Highland Park Village is the presenting sponsor of the luncheon and we are most grateful to the Al Hill Jr. family for their generosity.

“In addition to the fashion show, we will honor beloved community leader Lindalyn Adams with the 2016 Equest Community Service Award for many contributions and advocacy for Equest over three decades. We are also pleased to have longtime Equest supporters Lezlie and Bill Noble serve as Honorary Luncheon Chairs.

“We hope you will join us for this worthy and life changing cause. Please visit for more information.”

Equest Women’s Auxiliary Fashion Show And Luncheon Chair Kara Axley Finds A Match Made In Shopping Heaven

Equest Women’s Auxiliary Luncheon and Fashion Show Chair Kara Axley is having a real relationship with high-end merchants. The matchmaker is fashion-loving producer Jan Strimple. To have the most marvy fashions on the runway at Brook Hollow on Tuesday, October 4, the following merchants will be showcasing the fall fashions: Akris, Alice and Olivia, Carolina Herrera, Etro, Lela Rose, Market and St. John.

Akris (File photo)

Akris (File photo)

Lela Rose (File photo)

Lela Rose (File photo)

Caroline Herrera (File photo)

Caroline Herrera (File photo)

Adding to the luxury feel is the couple, who will be the honorary co-chairs. Yup, longtime supporters Lezlie Noble and her HPV jeweler husband Bill Noble.

Lezlie Noble in the center (File photo)

Lezlie Noble in the center (File photo)

Lindalyn Adams (File photo)

Lindalyn Adams (File photo)

And still another plus is the presentation of the Special Recognition Award to Lindalyn Adams. No, Lindalyn has not taken up residence in HPV, but she does shop and lunch there.

This fashion show is always a home run with handsome gents in riding attire as window dressing and, if the weather is user-friendly, the Equest Mini-ambassadors will be grazing on the lush Brook Hollow grounds.

Funds raised from the event will “benefit Equest’s therapeutic programming for children and adults with all types of physical, cognitive, emotional and learning disabilities.”

Oh, and, yes, HPV is the presenting sponsor for the 2016 Equest Women’s Auxiliary Luncheon And Style Show.

2016 Crystal Charity Ball Theme Revealed There Is A Season For Everything

It almost seemed surreal. On Tuesday, May 3, Lisa and Clay Cooley’s estate could have easily given Versailles or the Dallas Arboretum a run for glory. With fountains flowing on one side of the bridge and a tennis court on the other, pink, white and red flowers highlighted the Bluffview estate. Trams breezed the guests from the valet at the front gate to the Cooleys’ front door. For those who wished to take in the beauty of the grounds, it was perfect weather to stroll to the scene of the 2016 Crystal Charity Ball theme announcement party.

Lisa and Clay Cooley estate

Lisa and Clay Cooley estate

Early arrivals Dwight Emanuelson and Gregory Dunbar talked with Clay, who joshed about having spent the day planting the hundreds of flowers. Later Clay told how he just followed the marching orders from General Lisa. When asked about the upcoming nuptials of son Chase Cooley to Bela Pjetrovic, he admitted that his input was not gonna be necessary. As for high school graduating son, Chance Cooley, Clay said the youngest Cooley had scatted in his white Jeep when he saw the lineup of cars arriving at the front gate.



Along with the guests, a handful of violinists arrived and were soon located under the winding staircase to provide music. On the other side of the stairway was a decorative easel with a plaque bordered with beautiful flowers. In the center was written, “To everything there is a season.” A clue of things to come.



When the two-story living room filled with guests, the great room filled the bill for the overflow. Everywhere one looked were food, flowers and flickering candles in votives. Upstairs it was another story entirely. Designer Nardos Imam was literally sewing willowy Jan Strimple into a gown specifically created for the occasion.

Then word was passed downstairs to gather in the living room, where the announcement of the 2016 Crystal Charity Ball theme would be announced by CCB Chair Christie Carter, who was now on the stairway introducing the evening’s sponsor Bank of Texas Dallas Market President Ryan Suchala, who graciously thanked the CCB-ers and then turned the focus on the seven beneficiaries including the Paiges (Flink and McDaniel).

Christie Carter, Jan Strimple and Ryan Suchala

Christie Carter, Jan Strimple and Ryan Suchala

Christie then returned to reveal that Tom Addis would be the event producer, with Junior Villanueva providing the floral highlights and Lambert’s the greenery. As for the  theme, Christie announced it would be, “To everything there is a season.”

On cue, Jan in gown and a floral headdress created by Junior serenely descended the staircase. In her right hand was a silvery gray folder with flowers that matched those on her gown. Looking at the crowd of men and women who were mesmerized by the tall red-haired spring nymph, Jan opened the book and read the verse from the Book of Ecclesiastes.

No sooner had Jan closed the book and the applause had died down than she was surrounded by guests wanting to have their photo taken with her or asking about her gown and head dressing.

JUST IN: 2016 Crystal Charity Ball’s Theme Announced

Jan Strimple demonstrates the season of spring

Jan Strimple demonstrates the season of spring

The news that will determine the gowns and gems that will scene steal at the 2016 Crystal Charity Ball was just announced a few minutes ago at Lisa and Clay Cooley’s breathtaking Bluffview estate. It’s the mega-fundraising gala’s theme!

With CCB Chair Christie Carter revealing the theme would be “To Everything There is a Season,” czarina model Jan Strimple read the verses of the theme after doing a jaw-dropping strolled down the Cooley stairway wearing an amazing floral headpiece and a killer gown especially created for the announcement.

With a goal of $5.6M to benefit Community Partners of Dallas, Girl Scouts of Northeast Texas, Hope Supply Co., Notre Dame School, Parkland Foundation, Teach for America and The Family Place, the black-tie gala will take place at the Hilton Anatole on Saturday, December 3. The fundraiser will be orchestrated by veteran event producer Tom Addis and supported by The Garden Gate’s Junior Villanueva and Lambert’s Landscape Design’s Paul Fields.

The announcement party was underwritten by Lisa and Clay and was sponsored by Bank of Texas.

Designers, get your creative juices going to come up with knock-out looks for the December ball.

More deets to follow, but gee-whiz. Let’s see. So many seasons to pick. Spring blossoms? Summer’s red-white-and-blue? Fall’s golden colors? Hmm. The wintry season glistening ice (aka diamonds)? Can’t wait to see the picks of the season in fashion.

MySweet2014Goals: Jan Strimple

Jan Strimple (File photo)

Jan Strimple (File photo)

Fashion producing, red-haired czarina Jan Strimple‘s 2014 goals are:

  • Spend more time with my charming husband. The biggest action I took towards achieving this goal was declining the production of the 2014 DIFFA show. Producing DIFFA at the level that Planet Productions and I have requires my home to become HQ for dozens of designers, wig stylists, production assistants and non-stop meetings and fittings. After producing the show for about ten years and then returning for the past 3 years to help put it back on its feet, this year I opted for a more civilized spring. Will I miss the creative outlet for my Disney-esque brain? Yep! But, I will pour all that creative energy into my other projects!
  • To further develop an idea I’ve had cooking for several years: building a bridge between the fashion designers who visit our city and our local fashion college students. Attending fashion college in L.A. or New York generally allows for working classes/lectures with today’s designers or some of fashion’s prolific retirees. Dallas has never been able to offer that, yet we have stores like Neiman Marcus, Forty Five Ten and V.O.D. who bring designers into our city regularly. I shared this thought with Fashion Group International’s Chuck Steelman and he loved it. Appropriately titled The Designer Speaker Series this should be the year it takes off and I look forward to working with him on it!

Cyber Cruelty Reaches An All-Time Low Today

We’ve all received those faux-plea emails supposedly from a friend, who is out of the country and has lost their luggage and in need of help. It’s almost become routine to hit the “Delete” button the moment one of these missives hits the emailbox.

However, this morning the situation ramped up to a new, all-time low, when an email was supposedly send from Tincy Miller, who was allegedly on a short vacation in Scotland and robbed. It was upsetting, distasteful and cruel to say the least, when everyone in Tincy’s address book knows that her husband Vance will be buried today

Evidently the email hit the always gracious flaming-haired swan Jan Strimple the same way, who sent the following email* to MySweetCharity headquarters. Before reading it, let’s just say, Jan set aside eloquence for downright disgust and anger.

“I would assume you also received this email this morning?

“The timing of this electronic intrusion on Tincy’s privacy and loss has incensed me.   On the day she is saying her final physical farewell to her beloved Vance, we can rely on the vulgarities of cyber-life to demonstrate how unfortunate the human creature can be.

“If I could reach through my Mac screen and apprehend this cyber criminal, I would want this one hanging by his private parts and publicly flogged.  

“When will this super-cyber-world be one that can police the human filth that feed like predators on it’s users? Where is the Cyber-Cop force that will stop these home invasions? I fear it’s on the big screen and exists only in a writers head …. somewhere in The Fifth Element.”

We applaud Jan’s words and regret that Tincy, her family and friends were victimized by such cyber cruelty.

* The email was printed with Jan's permission.  

Dallas Symphony Orchestra League Debs, Dads And Honor Guard Tune Up Bows And Dance Step For February Ball

Debutante presentations just don’t magically happen? No! The planning and preparing that goes into a major presentation ball is right up there with a military invasion. How about a for-instance of just one of the wee behind-the-scenes activities that takes place?

While some folks were on the slopes or being gorgeous at La Plage in St. Barth’s, the Dallas Symphony Orchestra League débutantes, dads and honor guard were gathered Saturday before New Year’s in the Eugene McDermott Concert Hall at the Meyerson to practice bows and dancing for the February 2nd presentation ball.

But on this occasion they weren’t in black tie, tails and ball gown. One member of the honor guard wore walking shorts despite the frigid weather outside. One dad wore a natty houndstooth jacket and black loafers that were as shiny as a Steinway baby grand. The attire du jour for the gals was leggings, low-level makeup, ponytails and flats that were quickly replaced by heels when rehearsals commenced.

While the rehearsal was to start at 2, it didn’t really kick off until 2:15. This delay gave the group time to gather. Seems the nearby underground parking lot at the Cathedral Shrine of the Virgin of Guadalupe was blocked off due to refreshening, forcing some debs, dads and guards to seek spaces across North Pearl.

Marielle LeMasters, Roger Gault and Jan Strimple

Statuesque Deb Gen. Jan Strimple was easy to spot on the Meyerson stage with her signature red hair and black leather leggings. On the nearby elevated risers were musicians in casual attire (jeans, shirts, sneakers and instruments). A young woman handed out instructions to arrivals. DSOL deb vet Channy Ronchetti, who is a shorter version of Jan only with Dallas blonde hair in a ponytail that was longer than a swan’s neck, sat on a side riser with other gals. Known for executing the legendary deep bow to perfection, she’ll demonstrate it for the new debs on the block.

Channy Ronchetti

At 2:15 Gala Chair Kay Weeks welcomed the group seated in the center orchestra section and officially introduced Jan and Kay’s husband, Peter, who would be announcing for the day.

Dallas Symphony Orchestra League deb bow practice

Jan explained that the deb presentation was an 800-year-old tradition that started in England. For the first part of the two-hour practice, half the group would be in the Concert Hall to practice the staging of their presentation, while the others would head to the lobby to go over dance steps with professional instructors. The two groups would switch places for the second half.

Dallas Symphony Orchestra League debs and dads rehearsing dance steps

And how did they do? You’ll just have to wait to see. So, get your tickets.

MySweetCharity’s Make-Believe-Benefactor: Jan Strimple

Jan Strimple

“I would endorse my check to Mayor Tom Leppert, and ask him to distribute it in the following way:

  • $ 250,000 to plant more trees in our city.  We need their beauty!
  • $ 500,000 to Girls, Inc. Their programs alter the thought processes and therefore the futures of thousands of young women in our area.  Raising the horizons of possibility of under-privileged youth directly impacts the heart of our city.
  • $ 250,000 to Promising Youth Alliance because encouraging personal responsibility and leadership development results in more citizens who contribute to our community and fewer that take.”

Jan Strimple

Jan Strimple Reveals The Making of KidneyTexas Paper Dresses Honoring Event Sponsors

MySweetCharity has received notes about the “sponsors’ paper dresses” that were displayed at the KidneyTexas Fashion Show/Luncheon last Wednesday. So we went to the source of how the project came about. And that source is none other than Lady Jan Strimple (pictured), who reports:

When we reigned in the dollars and removed video, it was my challenge to come up with a fresh way to thank our top sponsors.  I asked my Chairs for their decor budget for the reception area, turned to a friend of mine to secure the Rootstein mannequins, and found 13 designers that were up to the challenge of working with paper.  Ten of them are students from UNT and El Centro, the other three industry professionals who were willing to support Kidney.

I told Carmaleta (Whiteley) I needed paper goods from each sponsor and some generic paper, so she got on the phone and worked her magic!  Millet paper trucks pulled up to my garage and dropped off ends of reams and over runs from jobs … my interns drove to American Airlines and CBS to pick up programming  and travel  posters, ticket jackets … at Baylor I asked for X-rays and  surgical gloves. Apparently x-rays have patients names on them and it would be against regulations to put them into my hands, so Suzette (Derrick) gave me her personal x-rays.

The designers came to my house – and shopped supplies and paper goods from my garage.  We talked concepts – gave them the mannequin measurements – they sent sketches – and then arrived on Tuesday with the results you saw at the luncheon. We had two last minute sponsors come in, and were able to find two more designers at UNT, so one of my assistants (also a UNT student) drove paper to UNT campus and between classes she did two parking lot paper and design meetings. Great stories from this project!

The designers loved the creative challenge and all ran with it. They were all backstage all eating pizza (my friends at Boston Pizza Restaurant fed all of my crew and the paper dress designers) and swapping stories about meeting their sponsors and being a part of this luncheon. Several told me they had never seen anything like this before and how proud they were to be a part of something so meaningful. Gracious and talented …. a great group.

Photo provided by Jonathan Aparicio

Nice things have happened for these talented young adults. Mary Kay now has their dress, as do CBS-11/TXA 21 (dress pictured with designer Jonathan Aparicio), Park Cities News, Stanley Korshak and Kid Biz. The art procurer for Baylor’s new facilities received a tweet of the dress from a Baylor associate at the luncheon and he tracked me down to see if they could acquire it. Told him we built them to thank our sponsors and all I asked what that the designer’s name be credited with signage in his installation.  Suzette’s x-rays are going to on public view!  Now that’s a dedicated Prez! Her bones are now part of the actual boning (ha ..ha ) for the corset of the dress. Love a designer with a good sense of humor. Love a President with a good set of ribs!

Also luv it when the world spins like it did yesterday.

Everyone’s hard work paid off and beaucoups of generous people left some money at Kidney’s doorstep.  It was all good.