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About the 2017-2018 Series

The Women’s Foundation of Arkansas and ESSE Purse Museum are pleased to announce four installments for its second season of Stories of Empowerment. The series aspires to encourage togetherness and understanding over our shared experiences of womanhood. While ESSE Purse Museum celebrates and honors the journey of the American woman throughout the 20th Century, the Women’s Foundation of Arkansas fosters the forward-moving economic path of women today. With our Stories of Empowerment series, the WFA and ESSE intend to further these missions of honoring our past and supporting and strengthening our futures by sharing stories.

Our 2017-2018 series focuses on the overarching theme of Women’s Place, Ingenuity, and Our Power of Expression. The series will touch on ideas of creativity and faith in times if economic hardship, female advancement, creativity, and the uniqueness of being women in the 21st Century. We aim to learn from women across various fields, expertise, and interests who will share their perspectives on how they express themselves through fashion, beauty, entrepreneurship, hobbies, family traditions, and more. Our series launches with a historical perspective and culminates with ideas of moving forward as women in a technological world.

With each installment promising to be an evening of fun, fellowship and libations, we hope women of Central Arkansas will join us for our second season of Stories of Empowerment.

Time & Location
  • 5:00 to 7:00 pm
  • ESSE Purse Museum, 1510 S Main Street, Little Rock, Arkansas
Reservations

Reservations are required and are available online.

Cost is $25 per session. We hope you will consider purchasing season tickets which include attendance to all four installments + the opportunity to bring a friend to an installment of your choice. This option costs $100 and is a $125 value.

Student (high school, college, graduate school) cost is $15 per session. We hope you will consider purchasing student season tickets which include attendance to all four installments + the opportunity to bring a friend to an installment of your choice. This option costs $60 and is an $85 value.

Refreshments, libations, programming, and thoughtful, provoking conversations are included.

Thank you to our sponsor, Rx Catering!

Inspiration Through the Decades

June 8, 2017 | 5:00 to 7:00 pm @ ESSE Purse Museum

Guests are encouraged to bring saved family photographs and family heirlooms reminding us of special women in our lives. We will have the chance to share our photos and our stories, reflecting on women’s roles in society and the traditions and objects in our families that inspire how we express ourselves today. What was your grandmother’s favorite handbag, and where did she love to carry it on the weekends? What were you mother’s hobbies and career goals? This session is in conjunction with ESSE’s special exhibit ‘Take Your Purse With You,’ which features Katherine Strause’s paintings of generations of women and their purses inspired by lost and found photographs.

The Art of Adornment: What the Outer Tells Us About the Inner

September 7, 2017 | 5:00 to 7:00 pm @ ESSE Purse Museum

Traditional or shiny, edgy or artistic, adornments contribute to how we express ourselves, our beauty, and our beliefs. They are extensions of our essence, our inner uniqueness, and often our economic circumstance. We will share stories and perspectives on how we adorn ourselves, with what materials and styles, and why. We aim to discover how our outer and inner beings converge through our choices in expression through adornment. Guests are encouraged to wear their favorite embellishments and share their own stories of expression through the art of adornment.

Living With Faith

December 7, 2017 | 5:00 to 7:00 pm @ ESSE Purse Museum

Our faith often defines us. It gives us identify and purpose and is how we outwardly express—through words, action, love, and giving—our deepest beliefs about the world. This installment of Stories of Empowerment encourages women of diverse faith backgrounds to join us and share stories on how they express themselves through faith and how faith aids in their forward moving path as women.

The Economy and the Future of Fashion

March 8, 2018 | 5:00 to 7:00 pm @ ESSE Purse Museum

Advancements in science and technology have made fashion more transparent, unique, readily available to diverse socio-economic groups, and widely celebrated. As Stories of Empowerment often focuses on how the past plays into the present, we hope the series’ culminating session will focus on the future. How does science and technology support women’s ingenuity and uniqueness in the 21st Century and help us form our fashion decisions? How does fashion technology support entrepreneurship and economic advancement of women today?