Runway event raises breast cancer awareness

Project Runway, Christian Siriano, PinkJams!
Christian Siriano. Photo used under Creative Commons licence.

This post was written by Hatchet reporter Samantha Hatton.

“Project Runway” winner Christian Siriano showcased some of his latest fashion and helped bring together fashion aficionados and cancer survivors alike Friday night at the Pink Rocks the Runway fashion runway event.

The event was held at the International Trade Center and was hosted by Pink Jams!, an organization dedicated to the fight against breast cancer through awareness and fundraising.

The evening began with a reception where guests had the chance to meet Siriano. The event featured live music from Charm City Devils during the reception and the runway show.

First to walk the runway were 14 breast cancer survivors. All the models were under 40 years old because Pink Jams! advocates the importance of mammograms for even younger women. The youngest model received her cancer diagnosis at just 21 years old.

During the show, one survivor pulled off her wig while strutting the runway. She posed for the cameras despite having lost her hair from cancer treatments, causing the crowd to erupt in applause.

Each of the survivors modeled pink couture gowns made especially for the occasion by local D.C. designers like Elizabeth St. John and Estella Couture.

D.C. designer Afua Sam from Studio D-Maxsi said she felt honored when cancer survivor Stef Woods asked if Sam would design her dress for the show. Sam, whose design inspiration comes directly from the fabrics, made a gown that emphasized deep shades of pink and a long train.

Also joining the women on the runway were 11 men, including football players like Brandon Banks, wide receiver for the Washington Redskins, and Devon McTavish, defender for D.C. United. The men sported grey suits with pink ties.

Next to hit the runway was Siriano’s spring collection, which he also showed during New York Fashion Week. His line features some very feminine silhouettes, yet it maintains the edginess he has become known for. He balances many of his looks with neutral tones while incorporating bright shades of orange and yellow to complete an overall fresh and chic collection for the spring season.

Ticket sales and donations from Pink Rocks the Runway enabled Pink Jams! to provide a $30,000 grant to the Capital Breast Care Center. A check was presented to the care center by Siriano and the founder and president of Pink Jams!, Christa Floresca.

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