Jeannette Kendall, president of Success In Style, also operates Charity¿s Closet boutique in Savage Mill.

Jeannette Kendall, president of Success In Style, also operates Charity┬┐s Closet boutique in Savage Mill. (Jen Rynda, Patuxent Publishing / August 30, 2012)

It’s been said that the right outfit can make or break you. And nowhere is a good first impression more crucial than a job interview. But not everyone has a business suit hanging in the closet. That’s where Success In Style comes in.

The organization, which is celebrating its 10th year, is dedicated to helping disadvantaged men and women dress for success for job interviews. The organization also provides fashion advice and interview coaching.

Ellicott City resident Jeannette Kendall founded Success In Style (SIS) 10 years ago with her business partner, Patti Francomarco. The two women owned a fashion consulting business called Elegance In Style and decided to use their talent for a good cause.

“Fashion consulting always results in customers shedding unwanted clothing,” says Kendall, who also writes a fashion and shopping column for Howard Magazine. “We realized that we had the opportunity to match this unending source of unwanted, yet high-end clothing to women who were in great need who were trying to find jobs.”


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In 2008, SIS opened its fundraising component, Charity’s Closet, an upscale resale boutique. Two years later, Kendall opened a men’s program at the North Laurel-Savage Multiservice Center. To date, SIS has assisted about 2,000 men and women.

Earlier this year, both Charity’s Closet and Success In Style relocated to the historic Savage Mill shopping center. Currently, Kendall is the only staff person; however, the organization has a five-member board, 75 adult volunteers and 75 teen volunteers.

The team celebrated the 10-year anniversary with their annual Pink Bag Lunch networking and shopping event in September. Plans for the event included a fashion show, “Ten Years, Ten Stories,” to highlight 10 clients modeling donated clothing.

Kendall calls her client models “living testimony to the impact of the mission of Success In Style.”

Success In Style, 8600 Foundry St., New Weave Building, Savage. 443-538-3843. successinstyle.org.