If accessorizing is, “what separates us from the other mammals,” then the hominid enthusiasm at Gallery of Jewels was entirely warranted. Shopping for jewelry at a benefit for Dress for Success demonstrates the best of human nature: altruism plus bling plus conviviality plus wine equals a truly heightened anthropological experience. The Dress for Success organization provides job training, interview clothing, and confidence-building for low-income women across the country; this evening’s beneficiary was the San Francisco chapter celebrating its tenth year serving nearly ten thousand women. The organization partners with other local nonprofits, including domestic violence shelters and job training programs, to ensure their clients are well-trained, well-prepared, and well-dressed for economic self-sufficiency. Shoppers and supporters gathered at Gallery of Jewels on Fillmore Street, a gem of a locale that offers temptation from 100+ local and international jewelry designers at price points from $10 to $10,000. Owner Bill Hoover personally welcomed guests at the door, introducing guests including fashion stylesetter Joy Venturini Bianchi and Thalia jewelry designer Rachel Clinnick to Dress For Success’ Gia Barsi and many stalwarts of the organization. Host Victor Vargas said, “This is a treasure trove of a shop opening their doors after hours to create economic empowerment for others – what could be better than that?” Co-hosts Emilio Mesa and Angella Sprauve ensured everyone was introduced, while James Presley circulated with delectable hors d’oeuvres and wines from hangtime Wines and Tenbrink Vineyards. Guests were encouraged to show their higher natures by shopping, and by marking their calendars for the June 18th gala, to be held in the Julia Morgan Ballroom. The combination of shopping while helping made for a successful evening for all who dressed while the cause was addressed.
Amongst the jewels who attended: Gia Barsi, Julie Sims, Kimberly Charles, Jordan Carmack, Doug Waggener, Denise Lamott, Ian Murray, Emilie Rader, Michelle Pender, Maria Koronatova Ralph, Ian Stallings, Alec Laughlin, David Reposar ….and many more who sparkled and shone.