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Handbags for Hope silent auction returns to Cottage Designs

Susan Bertrand, left, and Deb Case pose in the wine room at Olives Eatery, which Case temporarily transformed into an auction site to showcase 100 handbags available for purchase to the highest bidder during last year’s inaugural handbag auction. After having astounding success last year, Case decided to bring the Handbags for Hope auction back again for the month of October. Proceeds from the month-long event will benefit Maureen’s Hope Foundation, founded by Bertrand in memory of her sister, Maureen Humphrey, who lost her battle with cancer in 2003. The foundation aims to meet the personal needs of patients fighting cancer and other life threatening illnesses.

Susan Bertrand, left, and Deb Case pose in the wine room at Olives Eatery, which Case temporarily transformed into an auction site to showcase 100 handbags available for purchase to the highest bidder during last year’s inaugural handbag auction. After having astounding success last year, Case decided to bring the Handbags for Hope auction back again for the month of October. Proceeds from the month-long event will benefit Maureen’s Hope Foundation, founded by Bertrand in memory of her sister, Maureen Humphrey, who lost her battle with cancer in 2003. The foundation aims to meet the personal needs of patients fighting cancer and other life threatening illnesses.

— Cottage Designs invites everyone to name their price – for a handbag, that is.

Owner Deb Case has brought back a unique fundraiser touted as Handbags for Hope. Through Oct. 31, customers can visit the shop, browse the collection of numerous donated handbags and bid on their favorites.

“The process is relatively simple – if there’s a bag you wish to bid on, you simply place your bid at our store counter,” Case said. “If the bidder is outbid and wants another opportunity to bid on that specific item, we will contact you and give you the option to increase your bid amount. This is one aspect that makes this so special. You have more than a few hours to bid on a bag.”

This year’s auction features new and gently used handbags, totes, wallets and evening bags that range from high end designers to Italian leathers and cloths to Vera Bradley.

“You name it and it's here from all over the country,” she said, adding that donations came from not only Baldwinsville residents, but from people across the country. “This is largely due to the help of Rockette Brunetti who is one of the most generous, caring individuals in our village.”

In addition to getting a great price on a purse, bidders will also be contributing to Maureen’s Hope Foundation, which will receive all of the proceeds from the silent auction. According to Case, last year’s inaugural event raised more than $2,500 for the local not-for-profit and, as a result, was able to assist many families in need within the community.

Maureen's Hope is a local organization offering support and assistance to people facing the challenges of cancer and other life threatening illness.

According to the foundation’s website (maureenshope.org), “There are many needs that patients have when faced with a life altering disease that cannot be met by the medical community and we hope to fulfill some of those needs. Maureen's Hope caters to the personal needs of individuals facing these challenges by providing gift baskets and services that offer comfort and strength as well as helping to improve their quality of life.”

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