Five years ago, designer and fashion editor Ariane Dutzi was in Valladolid, Mexico, in the Yucatán Peninsula when she was struck by what she saw.
Her trip was in the middle of the swine flu epidemic and she witnessed firsthand artisans struggling to make ends meet and afford the medication they desperately needed.
Dutzi quit her career as a fashion editor in Paris and New York to open a workshop in the town. Dutzi Design has since crafted one-of-a-kind bags by Mayan men and women, teaching them about entrepreneurship in the process and striving for the empowerment of women.
That experience changed Dutzi’s life, and on June 3, the culmination of her hard work and efforts to help the men and women of the town will be on full display thanks to some Park Cities businesses and a pair of recent SMU graduates.
Dutzi was put in touch with Danielle Olson and Jenny Kaulfer through one of their professors at SMU. Olson and Kaulfer have spearheaded a campaign to bring awareness to the cause.
Olson met Commonwealth Couture owner Lynda Piepgras, an SMU alum, and explained the cause. After hearing about the cause, Pipegras was eager to step up and support the cause through her Snider Plaza shop.
Piepgras then suggested Olson approach Shona Gilbert, another Park Cities resident who launched her own jewelry line in. Shona’s jewelry has been featured in numerous Best Of Dallas lists and has been presented in Neiman Marcus stores around the country.
Gilbert joined up with Piepgras, a longtime friend, to support Dutzi’s cause and goal to empower the women of the Yucatan. The June 3 event on the rooftop of the Sundown at Granada on Greenville Avenue will run from 8-11 p.m. There will be live music, as well as deejays, drinks, and plenty of clothing and accessories from the two businesses and Dutzi Designs on display.
Live Hair Salon will set up a booth where women can get their hair done while browsing the collections. And you can also learn how you can help empower the women of the Yucatán.