The Gift That Keeps On Giving

Yesterday you met the lovely, sweet and dear Ms. Raquel. Hop on over here, in case you missed it. As a result of Raquel reaching her $1,000 goal in order to send 30 children to camp for 10 weeks this summer, through the Dowd YMCA's Community Support Campaign, Raquel promised to wear a dress for the first time since the 5th grade.

Can you believe it?  She's a natural if you ask me!

Now of course, every smart ensemble begins with a budget, and since we are not likely to see Ms. Raquel in a dress everyday, we set ours at $50. This may sound feasible, and certainly it is, but this would NOT be easy. Enter our lovely friends over at Lipp Boutique.

You know. The place I snagged this fabulous JJ Winters clutch. Here's a similar one for you if you don't find it there.

As I said, I knew an entire ensemble under $50 would be a challenge, so I called up the ladies at Lipp Boutique to see if they would like to participate in the giving.  I couldn't finish my ask before the owner excitedly and graciously jumped at the opportunity. How amazing and awesome!! Do you remember this dress from In Style Magazine I previously shared?

Well, I recently saw one very similar on the Sale rack at Lipp Boutique and thought the bold, bright colors would be a nice complement to Raquel's beautiful, dark olive complexion.

Raquel and her fun sister, Debbie, met me at the boutique to get to work!

We grabbed a few options.

I know you see that dress in the background.

And what do you know, but it was Raquel's favorite! We tried the dress on with a bevvy of accessories--belts, earrings, necklaces, rings, etc.  We ultimately went with a blue banded belt and triangle necklace, keeping in step with the dress's color block theme. 

Lipp Boutique so graciously gifted us the dress and belt!

We ventured over to Target, where Raquel immediately reached for this tan blazer.  At $29.99, her pick is smart and multi-functional. The metallic shoes were a steal On Sale for $14.99, another smart buy, since this color will work with virtually anything.

We threw in my Grandmother's sash, (of course), a pair of gold circle earrings from Morrison Smith Jewelers, a blue chain link bracelet from ivy & leo, and a gold dome shaped ring loaned to us by Lipp Boutique.

Raquel was already styling hip green fingernails to suit!

You know we had to pay homage and bust out a little YYYYMCA!

Precious Pea number two was so excited to be in on the action! He's seen most wonderful man in the world (AKA Daddy) take a gazillion pictures of his Mama, so he was thrilled to provide a little guidance at our photo shoot.

Raquel, I had SO much fun stylin' with you!!

And you know Hanky loves ya!

You look ravishing, my dear!

This was such a wonderful, fun opportunity to give back. I am very grateful for my membership at the YMCA. I couldn't have imagined a better opportunity for the Queen City Style's first venture in philanthropy. Many thanks to all the friends who donated money, to Raquel for being so fun and easy going during her brave time, to all my YMCA friends and to Lipp Boutique for being so generous. Y'all ROCK!

While the Dowd YMCA has reached their goal of sending 30+ children to camp this summer, there is always a capacity to do more for others. Click HERE if you would like to donate or more learn more about the YMCA of Greater Charlotte or locate a YMCA in your area.

For the love of giving back, always in great style... Whitley

Clothing Credits: Dress: Jack by BB Dakota, Mossimo Pointed Lapel Jacket: Target, Necklace: Ours is from Lipp Boutique or try this one, this one, this one, or this one. Bracelet: Ours is from ivy & leo, or try this one, and I love this link bracelet and watch in one. Belt: Ours is from Lipp Boutique, here's one. Shoes: Target Earrings: Mine are from Morrison Smith, but here's a nice simple pair. Ring: Ours is from Lipp Boutique, here's my new statement ring.