ExxonMobil Makes an Impact

Impact Day COllage smallExxon Mobil Impact day was Tuesday October 20, 2015 and 40 volunteers from ExxonMobil’s Fuels, Lubes, Corporate Global Services Company (FLCG) Procurement Team took over The Cottage Shop to give the store a boost inside and out! The Shop was closed for the day as volunteers rolled up their sleeves and gave the walls a fresh coat of paint, including our fitting rooms and their doors, installed 31 new shelves for our shoe displays, and laid gravel beside our bushes along Westheimer.

Volunteers were also busy down in the basement, helping us sort through the major treasure trove of clothing, shoes, jewelry and other accessories generously donated by a boutique. Their help processing all this merchandise was integral to getting the new goods out on the floor for our shoppers to enjoy!

This day of giving back is a part of Exxon Mobil’s Impact Day, formerly called Day of Caring, with United Way. With over 10,500 volunteers this year, Impact Day projects through United Way give corporations the opportunity to give back and support the needs of local nonprofits. ExxonMobil’s FLCG Team Procurement Associate Spencer Hutchings said they selected The Women’s Home as beneficiaries “based on the upstanding work The Home does and the values that it holds.”

The Women’s Home is grateful to ExxonMobil’s FLCG Procurement Team for their hard work and enthusiasm!

The Cottage Shop Goes Vintage

Vintage TCS FestivalOn the sunny Saturday of September 19th, The Women’s Home Cottage Shop joined 39 other vendors of vintage and antique goods for the Houston Vintage Festival. Hosted in the spacious and repurposed air hangar of the 1940 Air Terminal Museum at Hobby Airport, the festival brought together lovers of vintage goods, fashion and beauty with pop up vendors, a retro beauty contest and eats from local food trucks. The Cottage Shop was connected to Festival organizers by friend of The Home and Ms. Houston Vintage Judge, Tina Zulu, owner of Zulu Creative. The Festival’s organizers, Dawn Bell, Diana Candida, Maria Martinez, and Mitch Cohen generously donated a booth space to The Cottage Shop after hearing about the vital role The Shop plays in supporting our programs through revenue, and providing job training to our residents.

The Cottage Shop team split up to keep our shop open as usual while Cottage ShopVintage TCS Manager Cheri Barton and Cottage Shop Associate Gustavo Vila packed up Shop’s vintage collection of clothing, hats, jewelry and other accessories to sell at the festival. Over the course of the day, The Cottage Shop team met several new customers and reconnected with patrons who hadn’t visited in a while. By all accounts, customers were impressed with how the Shop has grown. By the end of the festival, the pop up vintage boutique gave us great exposure for our mission, the shop’s vintage section and a little added financial support.

We’re thrilled to have been a part of the Houston Vintage Festival’s stylish look back. Thank you again to the organizers Dawn, Diana, Maria and Mitch for inviting us to be a part of the festivities!

Donate your Holiday Styles to Shop. Taste. Empower.

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Have you been wearing that same little something every holiday party for the last three years? If you’re looking for a change in your holiday style, and a way to give your old clothes new life, donate your gently worn clothing, shoes, and home goods to The Cottage Shop. We are looking for men’s and women’s evening wear, shoes, and handbags to help us stock up for Shop. Taste. Empower. in November! Not looking to retire your special holiday outfit, but gotten the last mile out of that festive light-up sweater? Bring it down to The Cottage Shop to liven up someone else’s holiday festivities. Or if you have that unusual gift from last year’s white elephant exchange that you’ve never found a place for? Re-gift it to us and make someone else’s holiday gift hunt!

Our very first Shop. Taste. Empower. was Sunday, May 3, 2015 at The Cottage Shop and 200 shoppers came to sample delicious eats from Hungry’s, BB’s Roadhouse, and Phoenicia’s, bid on amazing silent auction items and catch great deals on all merchandise at the shop.

The event was such a great hit, we’re doing it again on Sunday, November 15 just in time for holiday shopping, and we need your help to make sure it will be even bigger and better than before! Tres Chic Boutique, owned by mother and daughter team Susan and Elizabeth Hancock, has generously donated over 100 pieces of stunning high fashion clothing which we’ll have on sale that Sunday and we’re looking for other donors to join them in stocking our shelves.

This holiday edition of Shop. Taste. Empower we’ll have sweet bites and warm drinks from Whole Foods, Jody Cakes, Paulie’s, and Greenway Coffee Company.  DJ Gracie Chavez will be back again to mix tunes to help shoppers get in the spirit of the season as fashion stylist Dawn Bell and Make-Up Artists and hair stylist Justin Hernandez, and Lydia Lutz offer style and beauty tips to interested attendees. Our Media Sponsor, Houstonia will have special promotional goodies and copies of Houstonia Magazine the day of the event. In addition to holiday styles for men and women in our vintage and evening sections, and our ugly holiday sweaters, we’ll have gift sections to help you find stocking stuffers, white elephant presents, and gifts big and small for all the people in your life.
If you’ve got potential merchandise for Shop. Taste. Empower. collecting dust in your closet or home, shake it off and donate it to The Cottage Shop by Friday November 6, 2015 and help us make this event fabulous and festive!

Then on the day of the event, bring your gently used winter wear for women including coats, hats, gloves, scarves and sweaters as a donation and get a free goody bag full of swag as our gift to you for helping our residents stay warm for winter!

Click here to reserve your ticket for Shop. Taste. Empower.

Shop. Taste. Empower. Holiday Edition 2015

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Click here to register for this free event!

The Cottage Shop’s Holiday Edition: Shop. Taste. Empower. party features the best of beauty, fashion and food, Sunday, November 15, 2015 from 1 to 4 p.m. The free event gives shoppers an opportunity to find incredible gifts, receive styling advice from Houston’s fashion experts, nosh on sweet treats and most importantly, donate women’s winter clothing to those in need.

The Cottage Shop at 811 Westheimer Rd. is an undiscovered gem, mixing new clothing and accessories with gently worn designer clothing in one cozy location. The Cottage Shop helps women in crisis regain their self-esteem and dignity, while cultivating an empowering spirit. The Shop. Taste. Empower. party is an opportunity to explore the store while enjoying the fun and fa-la-la’s of the season.

Be the best-dressed at every holiday party this season and receive personalized fashion styling by vintage expert and celebrity fashion stylist Dawn Bell and Houston Chronicle Fashion and Beauty Editor Joy Sewing.

Create a head-to-toe holiday look at the Beauty Bar with the ultimate Holiday Glam Squad. Beauty blogger, Nicole Kestenbaum (Lipstick & Brunch) and makeup artists Lydia Lutz (Artistry by Lyd), Justine Hernandez and Kenya Hunt (Makeup by Kenya) will be on hand to get shoppers gorgeous for the season, plus hairstylists will show shoppers how to create quick up-dos.

LUSH Fresh Handmade Cosmetics will bring their lip scrubs and holiday lipsticks and Shany Cosmetics will complete the lips and lashes beauty bar with luminous lashes and brilliant holiday eyeshadows.

Shoppers will enjoy sips and bites by Greenway Coffee Company, Jodycakes, Paulie’s Restaurant, Topo Chico and Whole Foods Montrose and lucky bidders will have an opportunity to win a Happy Hour for 8 at Boheme, Barista 101 class for 15 guests taught by David Buehrer of Greenway Coffee, plus much more.

The first 250 guests who donate new or gently used women’s winter clothing will receive a swag bag to rival Santa Claus, loaded with cosmetics, special offers on yoga and fitness, plus other treats. The shopping soundtrack is provided by DJ Gracie Chavez, co-founder of Bombón.

Women supporting other women on the host committee include Hallie Bauer, Helen Bernard, Alice Berry, Blair Foster, Brooke Grisebaum, Jennifer Keenan, Maria-Eleni Koinis, Nicole Ali Langham, Connie McAllister, Emily Mohn, Lauren Mohn, Alixe Ryan, Vickie Snow, Heather Staible, Christina Stith, Hayley Vaughn and Sarah Walters-Aramburo.

The Women’s Home extends special thanks to food sponsors: Paulie’s Restaurant, Jodycakes, Greenway Coffee Company, Topo Chico and Whole Foods Montrose; event supporters Aerial Yoga Houston, Boheme, BURD LIFE, Francesca’s, LUSH Cosmetics (Highland Village), Shany Cosmetics; and media sponsor Houstonia Magazine.

Looking for Shop Support

b2ap3_thumbnail_DSC05767The Cottage Shop has racks of exciting new merchandise–with more needing sorting!

Frequent shoppers at The Cottage Shop will notice that we’ve been receiving lots of new merchandise, and we always appreciate support in getting things sorted from inside the door to go out on the floor! We’ve had an influx of donations from generous boutiques and need help getting donated items processed and ready for our customers.

Recent volunteer groups have been doing their part to get things moving. On September 24, the Women’s Team Member Network at Wells Fargo visited The Women’s Home to learn more about the work we do and to volunteer. Manager of Volunteer Service Chris Hammond spoke to the group about volunteer opportunities before giving the floor to Board Member Mary Arnold. Finally, Wells Fargo Volunteers heard from one of our residents, who shared the impact The Women’s Home has had on her life. They then headed over to The Cottage Shop to help process and sort incoming merchandise and help prepare materials for the Re:Entry Summit The Home held on Wednesday, September 30.

Aetna, who volunteered in the Cottage Shop on  September 19, came back October 3. Groups like Wells Fargo and Aetna aren’t alone. In the past month, we’ve had volunteers from:

 Episcopal High School

Five Stars

Methodist Hospital

Exxon Mobil

In the coming weeks, we’re excited to already have several groups scheduled including:

Double Tree Hotel


Southern Methodist University

University of Houston Social Work Club

University of Houston’s Metropolitan Volunteer Program

If you or your office, social group, or faith community are looking for opportunities to get involved with The Home and would like to learn more about volunteering, please contact us at volunteer@thewomenshome.org.

3,000 Square Feet of Fashion

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Thursday April 16, 2015, a group of fashionistas got an exclusive glimpse at reNew & reDo 2015 Fashion Icon Theresa Roemer’s closet. A towering three stories and 3,000 square feet of clothing, shoes and accessories encased in spotless glass on gleaming white shelves served as the backdrop for the evening as the party carried on unhindered by the evening’s storm. Designer and high fashion donations from guests were piled high in the entryway, the donated clothing, shoes, and accessories will be sorted and stored to go on the runway and on sale at reNew.

Guests were there not only to see Theresa’s expansive couture collection but also to get involved and get excited about our upcoming reNew & reDo style show in August. reNew & reDo is The Women’s Home annual fashion show and high fashion clothing sale at the Wortham Theater Center, the proceeds from which go to support our programs and residents. In 2014, reNew & reDo raised over $130,000 with 21 volunteer models strutting the runway in ensembles composed by design team Lenny Matuszewski and Tamara Bonar for a sold out audience of 600 guests. After the show, the featured fashions were rolled out to join the rest of the boutique merchandise in the pop up Cottage Shop where guests wasted no time in finding and purchasing their favorites.

After our 2014 show’s fantastic reception and performance, we’re determined to outdo ourselves in 2015 and we hope you’ll join us!

Donate to The Women’s Home and reNew your Wardrobe!

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Tickets for our 6th annual reNew & reDo Fashion Show and Shopping Event are now on sale! With our biggest shopping event of the year on the horizon we are calling all Houston’s most fashionable men and women to clean out their couture closets for the cause.

Months before the show, we begin gathering the high fashion and designer clothing, shoes, handbags, and accessories for men and women from brands including Gucci, Prada, Dior, Chanel, and Michael Kors that will grace the racks and the runway in August. Couture comes from personal closets as well as boutique donations gathered from our friends and neighbors in the community.

If you have gently used designer styles in your closet that are looking for a new life, please contribute to making this year’s reNew & reDo bigger and better than ever by donating them to The Cottage Shop. Have an organization you’re a part of that’s interested in holding a clothing drive? Contact Chau Nguyen at cnguyen@thewomenshome.org or 713-328-1950.