I've returned safe and sound from my fantastic trip across the Upper Midwest to meet the customers and store owners who've been such great supporters of Cabiria. It was an astounding success, not only because I got to meet you all, but also because I got to see people's faces as they came out of dressing rooms wearing the clothes, beaming. It's an incredible feeling of accomplishment when that happens, and I feel lucky. Thank you!
First stop was in Milwaukee at Boutique Larrieux in the Historic Third Ward. Lydia's shop is gorgeous, in a converted warehouse space with exposed brick, dramatic lighting and great bead-festooned dressing rooms.
Lydia was a great hostess, and got saucy modeling some of the pieces herself in rotation. I also loved that I got a 3 person shot in the Sofia in Giant Peonys - triplets!
The next evening was at the jewelbox of a boutique, Vive la femme in the Bucktown neighborhood of Chicago. Stephanie and her staff are such a bundle of joyful energy, and that's not just the mint juleps they served! She also had Jen and Tish from Spa Soak, a local business, come out to do hair and makeup for the attendees, thus, evening though there had been rain, my hair looked fabulous. Speaking of fabulous, Stephanie's staff Amber, Amanda and Perry all modeled dresses during the event and looked stupendous. I think they are directly responsible for selling them just by showing the world how great they look in Cabiria.
The following day, I woke up at the crack of dawn and started driving from Chicago to St. Paul for the last event at Bombshell Boutique in St. Paul, MN. That is a pretty but long drive... Denise was our hostess for this event, and pulled out all the stops. She event baked biscotti! Yum. I loved meeting Denise and her staff and customers - it felt like coming back to a dear friend, though it was the first time. One of my favorite moments was a woman came in looking for a dress for her retirement party on Monday, but felt that the neckline on the Valentina was a little too low for her. So I got a needle and thread from behind the counter and stitched it up for her and she walked out happy! So much fun!
At the very last minute of the event, my dear friend Emily came in the door with her fiance. She had driven quite a way to make sure she got to see me and to buy a Francesca in Orange Dot to wear for her wedding reception. I am so honored that she chose to do this and she looks stunning in the dress!
The day after I came home, the Supreme Court knocked down DOMA and Prop 8, giving full rights and recognition to gay and lesbian couples who marry in states allowing same-sex marriage. I love love and romance and all things involving two people finding a partner, so I wanted to celebrate. Inspired by Emily's choice to wear one of my dresses for her own wedding, I am offering a free Francesca dress from Cabiria to the first plus size bride marrying a bride (or groom marrying a groom who is fond of wearing plus size dresses). You will have to prove that it is an incipient marriage with an invitation or photos or license or something, but it would be my honor to celebrate with you!
Finally, the wonderful website Madison Plus Select has released the Francesca in Robin's Nest, worn by the lovely Ivory May Kalber, on their curated website for sale. I'm a lucky girl indeed.
Here's to celebrating all kinds of success!