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Thursday, November 14, 2019

daph. Brings Quality Llama and Alpaca Fashions to the Central West End

Posted By on Thu, Nov 14, 2019 at 6:05 AM

click to enlarge Quality handcrafted bags will be available for purchase at the daph. pop-up shop. - COURTESY OF DAPH.
  • Quality handcrafted bags will be available for purchase at the daph. pop-up shop.

Daphne Benzaquen has a simple goal — to create versatile, durable products that can make a woman's daily life easier. daph., a woman's fashion and lifestyle label, is the result.

daph. sells high-quality purses, clothing and accessories, all handcrafted in Peru. All of daph.'s goods are created using llama leather and baby alpaca fur. This winter, the St. Louis-based company will be selling its specialty products at a pop-up shop in the Central West End.

Originally from Lima, Peru, Benzaquen developed the brand with her Peruvian roots in mind. Although fairly uncommon in the U.S., llama leather and alpaca fleece are popular clothing materials in Peru. Benzaquen especially likes llama leather for its soft, lightweight quality, which makes it ideal for purses, clutches and other bags. daph.'s llama leather is sourced as a byproduct from llama farms in Peru, where the animals are popular for their meat and fleece.

"Because women's purses are already so heavy, I thought, 'Why should the material make them even heavier?" Benzaquen says. "The llama leather is great. It's lightweight but also durable and strong."

daph. also uses baby alpaca fur to make its soft, lightweight clothing items. Every year, alpacas in Peru are shaved to avoid overheating in the summer months. ("Baby" alpaca fur refers to an alpaca's fur that has been shaved for the first time).

Benzaquen prides herself on working directly with family-owned Peruvian farms to source the most sustainable and highest quality of leather and fur. These Peruvian traditions are translated through her modern style.

Benzaquen is also dedicated to using her platform to fund Peruvian charities. A portions of last year's daph. earnings were donated to a special needs school, Prite Niño Jesús, located in the Amazon. daph. gives back frequently to the St. Louis community as well, frequently collaborating with local charities here. "We're continuing these charity efforts this year and forever!" Benzaquen says.

daph. products are now available for purchase at a pop-up shop located at 314 North Euclid Avenue in the Central West End. The shop showcases daph.'s current seasonal collection as well as items from past collections while supplies last. The shop is open Tuesday through Saturday from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. now through December 24.

To learn more about daph. and its pop-up shop, visit the brand's website.

click to enlarge Daphne Benzaquen sporting her pima cotton open cardigan. - COURTESY OF DAPH.
  • Daphne Benzaquen sporting her pima cotton open cardigan.
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