Students Strut their Stuff for Charity

Meg Savin

With just a quick glimpse around campus, it’s clear that spring fashion is on the minds of many. Flowing skirts, chunky sunglasses, as well as the traditional Reefs and array of colorful Polos are sported by ‘Gate students as we begin to thaw out from the extremely long, bitter winter. With that in mind, We Funk gears up for its fourth annual Spring Fashion show at the Palace Theater on Thursday April 27. “Lights, Camera, Fashion” is an event put together under the direction of seniors Chantell Bowman and Jonathan Lopez. The event is a fundraiser with proceeds going to the Madison Group Home and the Syracuse Rescue Mission

Preparation for the event has been extensive.

“We began planning for the show over the summer,” Bowman explained. “We just started throwing designers’ names out there, and we wrote up our proposal for the BAC.” Co-sponsorship for the event has come from the Center for Outreach and Volunteer Education (COVE), the African, Latin, Asian and Native American cultural center and the Office of Undergraduate Studies (OUS) program.

Getting the attention of designers was no simple task.

“I drafted a letter explaining the purpose of the event and what We Funk does and sent it to probably about 50 designers,” she said. “A lot of big designers will donate to established charities. I got a lot of ‘no’s’ and some ‘maybe’s.’ I’m hoping that some of those ‘maybe’s’ will say yes before the show on Thursday.”

Armani Exchange agreed to donate. Aside from Armani Exchange, individual designers Ronnie Nery and Du’Shon Daniels with his line, Expressions Inc. as well as Phat Farm will be featured in the show. Bowman explained that she used student connections to get in touch with these individual designers.

As a sneak preview of what we might see on the runway she noted, “expect to see a lot of bright, bold colors for spring. Du’Shon Daniels’ work is very loud. There is always a message behind his designs.”

The event was very well attended last spring at the Edge Caf?e. Bowman explained that the venue changed this year to the Palace Theater, as opposed to the Edge Caf?e due to spatial needs, but also in hopes of including more of the Hamilton community. Admission to the show is $1, or an article of clothing will get you in the door. Bowman hopes that the event will pull in over $600, which was the amount raised last spring. “There’s no particular goal, but if we could make between $600 and $1,000 that would be great,” she said

Bowman knows firsthand the importance of donating to local charities, after helping to fold clothes at a local thrift store with the campus group Sister to Sister recently. “The Syracuse Rescue Mission provides clothes, emergency shelters and aids with job searching for the homeless,” she said. “It helps homeless people rebuild their lives.”

She noted that the Mission’s thrift stores are in need of clothing donations that are in good condition. “For people who are going to interviews, they can’t wear clothes that have stains or holes in them.” All clothing collected at the door or at the COOP prior to the show will be donated to the Syracuse Rescue Mission’s thrift store

Along with the visiting clothing designers, Thursday will also be an opportunity to see some of the creative talent on campus. Senior Angela Cheung will have her original jewelry designs on display.

“I’ll be selling earrings and some bracelets,” she said. “A percentage of the profits will go to the Madison Group Home and the Syracuse Rescue Mission.” Much of Cheung’s work has been seen around campus since she began selling to students at the start of the semester.

“I haven’t really marketed the jewelry,” she said. “People have just found out about it through friends or word of mouth. I’ve been selling to a lot of the girls in my sorority.”

Cheung’s jewelry will be sold before and after the show, where she will be accepting cash or checks. The New York native explained, “It’s a hobby of mine. I’m trying to get my license to sell at the summer street fairs in the City as a part-time job.”

If getting a sneak peak of what will be hot this spring and summer is not enough of an incentive to check out the show on Thursday evening, the prizes will be.

“An iPod and digital camera will be raffled off,” Bowman explained. “Armani Exchange donated a black women’s trench coat that will be auctioned off. We have door prizes that have been donated from the Barge Canal Coffee Co. and Maxwell’s Chocolates. Victoria Secret gift certificates will be given out. We have a lot of prizes.”

The show kicks off at 8:30 PM. “Remember to dress to impress,” Bowman said. Word on the street says that the best dressed will be picked out from the audience to receive prizes.

Those interested in donating clothes can drop off donations at the COOP next week.