|About the Book|
On the surface, the Womans Exchange of St. Louis is an exquisite gift shop with an adjacent tearoom--beloved, always packed, the chatter light and feminine, the salads and pies perfect. But the volunteers who run the Womans Exchange have had enough grit to keep the place going through two world wars, a Great Depression, several recessions, the end of fine craftsmanship and the start of a new DIY movement. The decayed gentlewomen they set out to help in 1883 are now refugees from Afghanistan, battered wives and mothers of sons paralyzed in Iraq. Sample the radical changes they have made over the years, as well as the institutions they wisely left alone, like the iconic cherry dress that has charmed generations of women and mothers, including Jacqueline Kennedy and Gwyneth Paltrow.