Style Strike bags fashion fans with its first episode

Style Strike debuted yesterday in the plaza of the Denver Pavilions. In this home-grown reality show, host Samuel Schimek -- of the I Heart Denver store in the Pavilions -- chooses audience members with old, out-of-style accessories to "strike" and replace with new items that are actually in "style."

Every Wednesday through August 15, the Pavilions will feature a new Style Strike, focusing on different kinds of accessories. Yesterday, three lucky winners took home brand-new, trendy bags -- and I received free movie tickets just for showing up! See also: -- Denver Pavilion's new series Style Strike -- Cash Mob at I Heart Denver

And not only did the three winners get new bags, they got to keep their old ones -- that's really a win-win situation.

Valerie had brought a small purse from a previous Project Runway fashion line. Schimek agreed that its function and style did not fit her needs, so he said, "Strike it!" and replaced the purse with a leather, tangerine bag that fits under her arm and holds all of her necessary items. Incidentally, that purse matched the necklace she was already wearing. As Schimek explained, "Tangerine is in."

Jamie, who doubled as the lighting assistant on the show, wound up taking home a brown leather purse with a bit more structure for functionality. Before he did the switch, Schimek discussed the "Mary Poppins effect" that giant purses have on people: Every girl knows that when you have a big purse, you fill it to the brim with everything imaginable. (I can cram an entire change of clothes, hair straightener, wallet, camera, extra shoes and water bottle into my purse, and it's only eight inches deep.) Jamie's new, sturdy purse has room for the essentials, but not so much that she turns it into an overnight knapsack. Catering to male fashion as well, Schimek tapped Corey, who was carrying an outdoorsy backpack. Now that Corey works in an office rather than at his former gig outdoors, he needs his bag to fit the part. A briefcase may seem too Wall Street or Oval Office for everyday use, but Corey scored big with the sweetest briefcase I've ever seen. It included a padded area for a 15" laptop, room for paperwork, chargers, phone and other personal items, and made Corey look like a first-class badass. Frankly, I was jealous.

To be considered for next week's style switch, show up at 11:30 a.m. on Wednesday, July 18 and register. And here's a real tip on this "reality" show: Hint that you're interested in something on the style wall, and chances are that you'll walk away happy. The crew also hands out gift cards and other free goodies.

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