Fashion fervor

United Way to host fashion show April 25

Posted: Friday, April 17, 2009

An open invitation by the United Way's Cachet Garrett for a philanthropist to "discuss significant giving" could soon pay off.

Marlintini's Lounge owner Ethan Billings stepped up with an idea for a fundraising fashion show and live auction, to be held April 25.

"I read the article and started thinking about ideas and came up with something like Wearable Art, but different," said Billings, who projects the event will raise about $10,000 through ticket and liquor sales, and donated live auction items.

The fashion show planning committee united Billings and Garrett, as well as representatives from Shoefly, Choco, Gottshalks, The Wedding Shoppe, and Alaska Dames, all of which donated their time and ideas. The result is an upscale fashion show called "What to Wear in Juneau, Alaska."

The event will be hosted by local personalities Ben Brown and Collette Costa. There will be an intermission performance by Rumbalaska, a salsa dance team formed by salsa instructors Heather Haugland and Antonio Diaz.

Billings created a large catwalk that stretches 60 feet across the club. If this event is a success, Billings said he will consider hosting more fashion shows.

"I think it will be great to promote local clothing stores and other local businesses, as well as raise money for the United Way," he said.

Marlintini's is donating 30 percent of liquor sales that night to United Way.

Travis McCain at AK Litho donated printing costs and Shyla Germain designed the tickets. Other contributing businesses are Sequence, Nugget Alaskan Outfitters, Night Moods and the Alaskan Brewing Company, which will be modeling their new barbecue apron.

"It's pretty spectacular, its got a bottle opener on it with a retractable chord, an insulated bottle holder, an oven mitt, and multiple pockets - it's the perfect thing for spring" said Christy Virgilio-Ciambor, marketing coordinator for the Alaskan Brewing Company.

The brewery also will model T-shirts and hats to be auctioned off.

"The United Way tackles a lot of issues here in Juneau - children's causes, housing issues, they really give where they can," Virgilio-Ciambor said.

Some of the 50 models scheduled to appear on the runway will have their hair styled by Gail E. Marvin of the Cutting Edge.

"I might do a funky color like primary red on a model that will be a style and fashion statement," Marvin said.

In addition to wild hair, men and women's sleepwear by Night Moods will be modeled, including a satin pajama set for men and chemises, robes and pajamas for women.

The United Way supports 38 non-profit organizations in Juneau, and many businesses said they were happy to help, especially since non-profit organizations have seen a decrease in donations lately. A complete list of their partners can be found at

In addition to the fashion show, clothes, shoes, purses, hand-made garters and gift certificates to local businesses will be auctioned off.

Seating is limited, with 300 tickets available for purchase at Shoefly, Choco, Alaska Dames and the United Way office. General admission tickets are $20, VIP tickets are $30 and include a swag bag.

The event begins April 25 at 8 p.m. at Marlintini's.

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