Kimberly Schlegel Whitman proved herself as the double-duty champ for North Texas fundraisers on Thursday, April 4. Looking as if she had no cares in the world, the 2019 Thrift Studio honorary chair patiently posed for cellphone shots at the Thrift Studio VIP party for 500 guests that started at 6 p.m. in the Design District benefiting Dwell with Dignity.
No sooner had one cell-snap been shot than she was cajoled for another one. In the meantime, the line extended outside the pop-up showroom for the 6:30 patrons to enter the already jammed area, with folks making themselves right at home in the designer vignettes by Alice Cottrell and Russell Brightwell, Brant McFarlin, Alison Dale of Harbinger Designs, Holly Hickey Moore, Judy Aldridge of Atlantis Home, Maestri Studio, Peter Cates Design and Pulp Design Studios.
In the one corner that seemed open, Dwell With Dignity Founder Lisa Robison recalled how 10 years ago, at the very first Thrift Studio, there had been no staff and lots of people in need. Now, she said that, thanks to having staff and support from the North Texas design community, they were providing furnishings for a formerly homeless family every other week.
No sooner had Lisa reported the growing needs than she was bending down to check the price tag of a chest for a potential buyer.
And the price tags were definitely getting second looks of disbelief. Mecox had donated a verellen velvet chaise that was going for $945, as well as “Charlotte” tall-wing chairs in blue linen for $475 each (the retail price had been $2,900). Mecox’s three-tier side table in a blue floral pattern had retailed for $795. But it was marked down to $325 and already had a green “Sold” sticker. From Bungalow 5 was a blue three-drawer side table going for $745. Luckily, Lisa and her team already had a month’s supply of furnishings ready to replace each sold item.
Steering their way through the crowds were Jennifer Clark, Richard Graziano (he was the 2019 Thrift Studio swag bag sponsor) and designer Peggy Zadina. Peggy told fellow designer John Phifer Marrs and James Campbell that she had just received her 50-year Theta anniversary pin. John, meantime, said he’d taken a pass on producing a vignette this year.
By 6:45 p.m., the line of guests who had patiently waited for the second-tier entry was virtually nil. They were now a part of the crowd checking out the furniture and each other.
At the valet stand, Kim was waiting for her car. Was she off to another swell-egant get together? No. She was headed home to tend to four-year-old daughter, Millie Whitman, who was recovering from a 104-degree temperature that had kept mom up all night. Kim said that at one point in the all-nighter, she provided Millie with the best remedy possible — “Do you want me to lie down with you?” The answer was, “Yes!”
So, while the hundreds filled the furnished vignettes, Kim headed home to take care of her munchkin.
Funds raised from the month-long pop-up shop will support Dwell With Dignity’s mission of helping “families who desperately need an environment that will support health and wellness.”