Fashion, Music & Art in Support of Battered Women's Support Services

Images by NH Chae
Who doesn't love an event in Joseph MacKinnon's stunning Waterfall Building? It a beautiful setting with gallery walls on one side currently featuring the work of Richard Roblin, and a clear glass wall on the opposite. There is a bar area in a side room which this evening offered a nice selection for those of us who wanted to enjoy a drink while mingling. Add in a great cause and you have the makings of a very special evening. November 16th, the evening of music, dance, fashion and silent auction was in support of the BWSS (Battered Women Support Services). There were many people there I enjoyed running into including producer Jim Michaels - who I have never seen without a big smile and ready laugh - many old friends to catch up with and new faces to connect with.

Images by NH Chae
Host Mandy Ross of Fashion TV graciously guided us through the evening wearing a bright emerald green mini-dress by designer Nancy Perreault. The event began with a keynote speech by Angela Marie Macdougall, executive director of BWSS that filled us in on all the charity is doing as well as the opportunity to help fund their work by supporting My Sister's Closet thrift store. Macdougall was followed by another speaker - Jenny Jung - who stepped up, put away her notes and chose to just speak to us from her heart. You could have heard a pin drop as she shared her story of being the victim of teenage rape as well as the survivor of a physically abusive relationship.

Left - Angela Marie Macdougall - Right - speaker Jenny Jung and producer Jim Michaels
Images by NH Chae
The evening then moved into the performance section of the evening. Singer, model, actress, philanthropist and owner of Black and White Events - Tiara Sorenson - sang three songs for us while accompanying herself on the guitar. I really love the simplicity of this type of musical performance. Sorenson has a lovely, rich, low voice that was a pleasure to listen to and the songs she chose were a good pairing for her style. This was followed with a strong dance performance by Kesuqwaluck Piroska - dancer, choreographer, writer, artist and model. The choreography - in honour of her grandfather who suffered from Multiple Sclerosis - was the perfect addition to the evening. She entered walking assisted by a cane and incorporated the prop all throughout the choreography. The runway can be a difficult shape to work with, but she handled it smoothly. I loved her use of levels from standing to floor and her decision to end the number as she entered - walking with the cane.

Left-  Tiara Sorenson by Dan Poh, Right - Kesuqwaluck Piroska by Claude Duke
Two fashion shows crowned the evening. First came XIXO Boutique (pronounced Shee-Sho), an authorized distributor for the Mexican luxury brand - Cuadra.  What they offered us was a variety of handmade shoes, boots, handbags, accessories and apparel in genuine leathers and exotic skins. Styles ranged from classic jackets to detailed shoulder bags to hand-tooled vintage embroidered ankle boots. This unique boutique is located in downtown Vancouver at 934 Seymour Street. Be sure and pop in the next time you're in the area. AND, it's only 1 block from My Sister's Closet so you can visit them both in a single shopping trip!

XIXO - images by Claude Duke

The next fashion we saw included looks that were created from items available in the My Sister's Closet boutique. All items are donated by supporters and the looks on the runway moved through new, thrift, vintage, upcycled artisan and Eco fashion. For me this was a great echo of the show they produced for the recent season of Eco Fashion Week. Love this quote from their mission statement, "Style inspiration is all about the swagger of empowerment; an embodiment of the diversity of the left coast where the mountains meet the sea and where Toronto, Montreal, New York and Paris lean in to learn more. Fashion with a destination and we will join WITH you in a world where violence against girls and women is a memory." My Sister's Closet is located at 1092 Seymour Street (at Helmcken). It should definitely be added to every fashionista's visit list.

Image by Zed Studio 7 includes not only several looks from the My Sisters Closet shpw,
but many of the individuals who work hard to make this evening happen!
Special thanks this evening go to DJ Taffi Louis for spinning great music all night; Fiona Goud whose assistance where ever needed was invaluable; Keiko Boxall for coordinating the runway shows; Rachel Ryall for managing the bar; Rain Hair Salon for the model's make-up and hair; models Chantal , Monika, Iryna, Alexandria, Michelle, Shannen, Steffi, Gallina; volunteers from My Sister's Closet Samantha, Angela, Barbara and more; donations by Liza Lee, Yves Decary, Media Mindz and Aiona Alive; and all the photographers who took the time to come and take such amazing images.

Images by NH Chae

The next event by LuvNGrace at The Waterfall Building will the the Aiona Alive West Coast Launch on November 30th. For more info go to or phone producer Vernard Goud at (604) 374-5610.

With the founders of Aiona Alive whose event is coming
up on the 30th - Image by Dan Poh
Hope to see you there.