Jen DaSilva's Cannes suitcase: Female-founded brands only

The Berlin Cameron leader is walking her talk when it comes to championing women entrepreneurs.

Jennifer DaSilva, president of Berlin Cameron, is packing her bags for Cannes with one key rule: Only female-founded brands are allowed in her suitcase.

DaSilva, the founder of Girl Brands Do It Better, an effort that focuses on empowering female entrepreneurs through connections and creativity, hosts various events at Berlin Cameron throughout the year to champion women.

In January, Berlin Cameron, Refinery29 - as well as social entrepreneur Dee Poku and strategist Serena Saitas - teamed up to launch LLShe, a platform that aims to support and help grow women-led businesses through commerce.

Two months ago, BerlinCameron hosted a Thankful4Woman Valentine’s Day Brunch alongside Thankful, Refinery29, Ellevate Network and Female Founder Collective, which included inspiration speakers, workshops and pop-up shops from female-founded companies. And just last month, DaSilva led an inspiring day of talks about motherhood and the stigmas and issues facing working moms today.

While finding only female-founded brands to match all of her travel needs was "a labor of love," DaSilva said it was necessary because she wants to be "walking the talk" when it comes to supporting women.

Everything - from the bag she’s packing the items in to her makeup - will represent female-run companies.

"My PJs too, so even when people can’t see me at Cannes, I’ll still be supporting female founders," said DaSilva.

In addition to her own suitcase, DaSilva is providing swag from all female-founders at her events during the festival, and the florist, photographer and baker are all female entrepreneurs.

DaSilva outlines her female-powered packing list below

  • A roomy Cuyana bag to carry all of my panel briefings.

  • A super comfy Yumi Kim jersey jumpsuit for the red-eye flight. Founder Kim Phan says her greatest reward is knowing every woman who wears her designs feels like the best version of herself. With my fear of flying I never feel like the best version of myself, so I’m hoping the soft jersey fabric will comfort me and enable me to get some sleep on the long flight.

  • Sclarandis shoes, which marry style and comfort for long days (and nights!) of networking and panels.

  • Tkees flip flops, which are sleek enough to store in my handbag to save my feet from the long walks on the Croisette.

  • Seamless underwear from Underclub, one of our Girl Brands Do It Better clients. It’s a subscription club that’s "all about you" that focuses on giving women confidence from the inside out.  I’ve been told that I’m their biggest customer!

  • Easy summer pieces from Rebecca Minkoff, who I often invite to appear on panels since she started the Female Founder Collective and has been such a voice for the fashion industry and beyond. I want her to know that I’m supporting her on our panels and off of them as well.  

  • Hands-free leather handbags from GG Maull, which not only help when you have to shake a lot of hands, but also do the job stylishly and consciously, as the company gives back to its artisans.

  • A dress from Kate Spade as they put their money where their mouth is by donating $1 million annually to causes that support the economic empowerment, mental wellbeing and access to professional growth for women in underserved communities in New York City and beyond. I know Kate Spade is no longer with them, but they still have a female CEO.  

  • The Accessory Junkie for sustainable, one-of-a-kind pieces sourced from artisans around the globe.

  • After the long days and nights, I’ll be sleeping in Dayo Women a brand that’s redefining lounge wear and celebrates self-love. I’m going to need it after the constant imposter syndrome battle I’ll be waging each day.

  • Although I probably won’t have time for the beach, I like to be optimistic so I’ll include my Chromat swimsuit, another Girl Brands Do It Better client that focuses on diversity and inclusion in everything they do.

  • Makeup from Thrive Causemetics for every product purchased they donate to help a cause thrive. And Skincare by Rodan and Fields - I love that I am not only supporting the female founders, but also my friend who runs a business from her home and needed the income to adopt a beautiful baby girl.

  • And packing it all in a roomy Away bag.

  • Of course, I wouldn’t have been able to do this with a bit of help from my stylist and friend Ali Call, who has really helped this ‘labor of love’ come to life by helping me find discounts, be creative and ensure that I’m living the mission from the inside out.

And check these female-founded brands for the events DaSilva is hosting

  • For our Women’s Pantsuit Party with Refinery29, the Female Founder Collective and VISA, we’re doing custom research on women’s perception of the pantsuit with female founded DIY research platform, Persky.

  • I’m bringing Pomp and Whimsy gin in my suitcase (from a female founder who started the Women’s Cocktail Collective) to serve it our Women’s Pantsuit Party. Instead of pouring the big-brand Champagne that everyone’s expecting, I’m serving Le Grand Courtage sparkling white and Tres Chic Rose which is owned and managed entirely by women and is also a part of the Women’s Cocktail Collective.

  • We’re filling our gift bags with items from female founders, from "I invest in women" shirts made from LLShe Pitch winner Society Nine to towels from Hammamas. I’ve had to call on the LLShe and Female Founder Collective networks for more ideas, and some companies are sending items.  

  • And we’re sourcing a female photographer and florist.

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