Annual ‘Power of the Purse’ to Showcase Local Vendors - KTVN Channel 2 - Reno Tahoe News Weather, Video -

Annual ‘Power of the Purse’ to Showcase Local Vendors

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The Nevada Women's Fund's fifth annual "Power of the Purse" boutique shopping extravaganza is just around the corner and it promises to be the "must attend" shopping and social event of the holiday season.

This year's fun and festive affair takes place from 5 to 9 p.m. on Thursday, December 6, 2012 at the downtown Reno Ballroom, 401 North Center Street, and features 71 local artisans and vendors selling one-of-a-kind gifts, home décor items, beauty products, jewelry and more.

"The outstanding quality and distinctiveness of the merchandise provided by our juried vendors, most of whom are local small business owners, is a key component of the ever-increasing popularity of the ‘Power of the Purse' event,'" said Kerri Garcia, event planning committee chair. "We are very selective and choose only the best of the best during the application review process."  

Twenty vendors participated in the first year of the event in 2008, which drew 200 attendees. By last year, the number of vendors had jumped to 58 with more than 540 shoppers.  With 71 vendors participating this year, event planners are hoping to attract 700 participants.  

According to Garcia, "The growing interest from vendors wanting to showcase their goods as well as community attendance prompted us to move the event to a larger venue this year – and we still have vendors on a waiting list." 

Original event vendors continue to delight shoppers

Two vendors have been with the "Power of the Purse" event since its inception in 2008.

One is Janet Storie who owns Sparkles custom artisan jewelry. Storie specializes in crafting handmade pendants and earrings.

 

"I love creating one-of-a-kind designs that not only complement each woman physically, but which also feed her soul," Storie said.

She uses primarily natural stones and precious metals, such as silver, bronze and copper, in her creations. She is especially fond of incorporating a hammered copper and wire wrap technique into some of her items. Each of her original pieces is a signed, one-of-a-kind creation and falls within the $18 to $160 price range.

Storie describes "Power of the Purse" as one of her premier events each season. "The idea of helping women and children through participating in events like these is very dear to my heart. I also love the energy of the event participants and look forward to being a part of "Power of the Purse" every year," Storie added. 

The other original vendor is Karen Scott, a former human resources executive who, after relocating from Jacksonville, Florida to rural Fallon, Nevada, began making tote bags as Christmas gifts for friends and family members. What started as a home-based business with just Scott at the helm has burgeoned into a storefront in Fallon and now employs four on-site staff plus 10 sales representatives in four states.

While Scott will have totes available for off-the-rack purchase at the event, she also offers 400 fabric swatches from which to choose for a truly custom-made bag.

"People love designing their own totes," Scott said. "Too Cute Totes provides an opportunity for each person to not only pick their favorite fabric for their tote, but also allows them to add or remove things like zippers and pockets to make their tote truly their own design." 

Of her long association with the "Power of the Purse" event, Scott said that it's a natural fit. As her business grew, she found ways to employ women who wanted to work but who needed flexibility in their schedules to accommodate family needs. Simply said, "I believe in what Nevada Women's Fund does to empower women to improve their lives. I try to do that through my business and it comes full circle when I am a vendor supporting this annual Nevada Women's Fund event."    

Additional event highlights

The evening also includes a designer purse raffle sponsored by The Summit shopping center in south Reno and a silent auction featuring intriguing, themed baskets.

Tickets are $40 in advance at the Silver Legacy Box Office or through www.ticketmaster.com ($45 at the door) and include free, convenient parking, luscious libations and abundant appetizers.

Proceeds support NWF's mission to inspire achievement among women and families. Go to www.nevadawomensfund.org or call 775.786.2335 for additional details.

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