Wednesday, May 31, 2017

Little Black Dress Gala Spring 2017 Charity Event - Fairmont Hotel Vancouver

Positive change in the lives of youth at risk, is being done through the Help Change My City Alliance, its Founder/Producer Alpha B. Kirabira, Christine Michelle, Assistant Producer and a whole community of supporters. At this event, the Gala, Sponsors, Designers, Artists, Models, Hair and Make-up teams, Dancers, Musicians, Photographers, Media, Businesses, Galleries and many, many volunteers demonstrate their creativity and leadership to showcase possibilities and achievements, here in Vancouver. Funds are raised, through ticket sales and silent auction, funds that go into bursaries and other direct supports including  upgrading education, finding work and housing, counselling, and networks. The support is long term and effective as reported through testimonials from young people, succeeding and sharing their experience, on stage and in the community.

This time, I attended the dress rehearsal here and was impressed by the energy and enthusiasm of everyone, throughout the long day into early evening. Alpha and Christine circulated, encouraging that model of friendship and confidence, especially for those new to the experience. There was food and lots of cold water, doors were open and the day was organized, models assigned and goals explained and set.

On May 26, I spent part of the day, helping backstage and then went home to dress up for the main event. My black and white polka dot silk dress and back silk bag are treasures from My Sister's Closet, a thrift boutique on Seymour and Helmcken, whose proceeds go to Battered Women's support services. This is another great resource for everyone who shops for bargains and for those who enjoy sharing their skills and learning many new ones. But while I dressed for a Gala, I got a huge education about what goes into the making of a fashion show, first. The Fairmont Hotel Vancouver, parking and doormen are to be commended for efficiently helping us to unload and transport the racks and bins to the backstage area. At the end of the evening, very late, there they were again, loading up and moving that van right into an easy exit. Once behind the stage, it was up to us to grab a rack to hang the twelve outfits per designer and a table, too. How to organize everything in a small space, plug in a steamer and power cords. and then dress models, practise the line up, all of these steps were necessary and how one person does it all? Impossible. I worked with Carolyn Bruce and couldn't help but notice how models were entranced with her Spring colored, embellished jackets, fascinators, jewellery (necklaces, belts, shoes, fingers) and accessories. The purple headpiece is from My Sister's Closet and redesigned and bejewelled by Carolyn. The teapot purse is her creation and no one could resist opening it and trying it on her or his arm.

It was amazing to learn how designers do so much more than we know. Carolyn Bruce, made special pieces for the Silent Auction as well as always being generous with her work for special photos, events and fund raisers like Little Black Dress. She inspires confidence and spirit with her designs. Another Designer, Tetyana Golotta, not only showed her own collection but also modelled for Carolyn and other Designers. Rich Abarquez, Teacher, Model, Social Media Master, modelled for at least two Designers, helped backstage and kept up the positive vibes and support for newcomers, throughout the Gala. Backstage was where leadership and giving beyond the call, were highly evident.

Fascinator from My Sister's Closet Re-Designed by Carolyn Bruce

Teapot purse made by Carolyn Bruce

Lady in Gold by Carolyn Bruce

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