If the chance of winning gift cards for Bloomingdale’s, Sweetgreen and Soulcycle wasn’t enough incentive to attend, beauty and fashion experts from Saks Fifth Avenue drew a crowd of students to Houston’s Hall of Flags for Wharton Women’s signature Dressing for Success event.
On Tuesday, Wharton Women organized its annual fashion show, themed “Corporate Catwalk,” to demonstrate dress codes in various industries.
In collaboration with Bonded Boutique, a retail store located at 38th and Spruce streets, the club outfitted 15 to 20 volunteer models who strutted Bonded dresses and jumpsuits. In contrast with last year’s theme of “Pretty in Pink,” the ensembles of this fashion show displayed more muted and neutral colors, with tunics and pumps of faded yellows and blues, black, navy and beige.
Dressing for Success is one of Wharton Women’s numerous philanthropy events, and all proceeds gathered from donations and raffle tickets for luxury gift baskets go to Career Wardrobe, a Philadelphia-based nonprofit that helps outfit and prepare disadvantaged women for the professional workplace. Career Wardrobe uses donations to buy clothing and provide professional development education for the 3,000 women they serve every year.
The event also involved a panel of experts from Saks who spoke on professional attire and makeup techniques for interviews. Seth Barton-Roberts, a Saks makeup representative working for Giorgio Armani, brought his favorite concealers and eyeshadow palette to demonstrate tricks for covering dark circles under the eyes and maintaining a natural look.
“I liked how it was small and we could really get an interaction with the people who were presenting, especially the representatives from Saks doing the makeup,” College freshman Molly Dorshimer said. Dorshimer served as a volunteer during the makeup demonstration. “I thought that was really helpful, because they were showing a transition from a day look to a night look, so it was two really useful looks.”
Danielle Selip and Dawn Toroker, Saks fashion representatives, gave tips on skirt length and how to wear a fitted jacket. “Interviews are about how you present yourself, and personal appearance can be key to your success,” Toroker said.
Though the event was free to all Penn students regardless of gender or school, it was suggested that all attendees contribute a $5 donation in the spirit of philanthropy. Last year, Wharton Women raised over $3,000 through raffle tickets and donations, and the club is hoping to raise even more this year by implementing Venmo and Square to facilitate the donation process for those without cash.
“We’re definitely aiming higher this year,” Vice President of Philanthropy and Wharton junior Sarah Liu said. “We have a lot more prizes this time, so I think we should be able to raise more money from that.”
Wharton Women reached out to local shops, restaurants and department stores for donations, ranging from spa tickets to Chipotle gift cards; the total value contributions amounted to nearly $7,000, and donations were organized into seven gift baskets that students could purchase raffle tickets to win.
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