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Fabulous Fundraisers Use Fashion For a Good Cause

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The Frocktail Party

Fashionphiles flocked to the first annual Frocktail Party on November 12th, eager to bid on a bevy of designer dresses up for auction in support of the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation (JDRF). Held in the penthouse loft of the fabulous Burroughes Building, supporters were promised "an evening of frocktails, flirting and fun" and were not disappointed! Delectable frocks from Canadian darlings Greta Constantine, Jeremey Laing and Ashley Rowe were on hand, as were designs from Diane Von Furstenberg, BCBG, Dior and more. As ladies sipped their drinks and circled their sartorial prey, a surprisingly bountiful and handsome herd of men balanced out what could have been a fearsomely feminine soiree. This sold out event raised an incredible $23,000 for JDRF and definitely put the fun in fundraiser. If you missed the Frocktail Party don't fret, a fantastic frock with your name on it will be waiting for you next year, but be sure to get your tickets early because this fundraiser is sure to become one of Toronto's hottest annual parties.

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(Photos courtesy of Jon Howcroft)

The Zareinu Fashion Show

The 6th annual Zareinu Fashion Show held at the Royal Ontario Museum on November 17th put a passion for fashion with compassion back on the runway with a fundraiser in support of the Zareinu Jewish Day School and Treatment Centre. Hosted by Fashion Television host and Canadian style maven Jeanne Beker, the night showcased fashion shows by design darling NADA, Thien Le and popular children's store Little Ones. While NADA and Thien Le sent models down the ROM runway in stylish looks from their FW09 collections and previews from their SS10 collections, the Little Ones show was the real star of the night, featuring children from the Zareinu school who receive treatment for a wide range of physical and developmental challenges. Decked out in sweet and funky garb these kids, flanked by children of Zareinu school supporters, stomped and sashayed down the runway to fun music and great cheers from the audience. It was an utterly inspirational night that raised money and perhaps more importantly, awareness, for the incredible work Zareinu does for Toronto children with special needs who are able to overcome so many tough obstacles thanks to the specialized education, care and love that the Zareinu staff and community provides.

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(Images courtesy of ImpressionsPR)

(See my exclusive interview with Jeanne Beker during Toronto Fashion Week here; see my review and pictures from the NADA show at Toronto Fashion Week here.)

R4 Fashion

Nestled atop glistening Lake Ontario in the Atlantis Pavillion on November 20th, students, fashion industry insiders and green advocates came together for R4 Fashion to celebrate up-and-coming Canadian fashion designers who are passionate about stitching for sustainability. Featured on the eco runway were designs from AIME by Monica Mei, CARRIE by Carrie Hayes, Thieves by Sonja den Elzen and Rachel Jasmine Chan, all of whom aimed to prove that "going green doesn't leave style behind." Hosted by the Sustainable Technology Education Project at the University of Waterloo, the night also screened an original documentary about sustainable technology, the fashion industry and public policy, and invited as guest speaker Aiden Abram, a community catalyst and youth organizer passionate about climate change. Eager to move past the ubiquitous three environmental R's - reduce, reuse, recycle - R4 is meant to represent an ambitious but necessary next step and new dimension for the fashion industry. As with any nascent movement, R4 Fashion certainly has some hurdles to overcome but the evening represented a gloriously green foray into a new world for fashion in which style and design can be sexy and sustainable.

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(Photos courtesy of BlogTO)