When you start something new, have you ever noticed how the world is divided into two distinct camps? Doubters and Cheerleaders. The most exciting part of starting this site has been the fantastic support I’ve drawn from friendships, old and new. No one has been any more encouraging to me than Jennifer Stringer, a friend I’ve known for over 10 years. We first bonded over our love for books. Jennifer started a book club at the local Barnes and Noble and I was part of her group. Since then she has become one of my closest friends, probably saving me thousands of dollars in therapy. She is funny, adventurous, and uncommonly kind, generous, and loyal.

More lovely than a Valentino dress any day!

Over the past few months, Jennifer has been my personal cheerleader, always ready to help despite a busy family and work life. When I began tagging DHD inventory and writing descriptions, Jen pitched right in, volunteering time just to help me get things off the ground. When she sensed I was discouraged, she would call just to give me a boost. When things have gone well, no one has been any happier for me. Even though she always looks like a superstar to me, Jen insists she has no real passion for fashion. Which really means that her enthusiasm for what I’m doing is born out of love and concern for me!

That’s why she spent last evening away from her family, just to join me at the IMA’s showing of Valentino: The Last Emperor. Always curious and interested in what’s going on around her, Jennifer was full of lively thoughts and questions on the drive home last night. As much as I love Valentino’s genius, I couldn’t help noticing how antithetical he was to my good buddy. So vain and self-absorbed is he that I might find him revolting if it weren’t for his charm. Jennifer, on the other hand, is all about other people, beautiful inside AND out. How blessed I am to have such a friend. I wouldn’t trade her for all the Valentino dresses in the world!