Peace Couture styles for a good cause

An evening of music, art and fashion to prevent domestic violence.

click to enlarge GOOD LOOKING OUT: A Peace Couture ensemble from La France. (Dress: Dina Bar-El, $698; cuff ring, $38; chandelier earrings, $48; gloves, $32.) Styling: Leslie Joy Ickowitz & Pamela Bloomgren. Hair: Bill Baker. Makeup: Pamela Bloomgren. Model: Melissa Zinge. - Esther Louise Photography
Esther Louise Photography
GOOD LOOKING OUT: A Peace Couture ensemble from La France. (Dress: Dina Bar-El, $698; cuff ring, $38; chandelier earrings, $48; gloves, $32.) Styling: Leslie Joy Ickowitz & Pamela Bloomgren. Hair: Bill Baker. Makeup: Pamela Bloomgren. Model: Melissa Zinge.

Ring ring (or, to be more precise, “Tear You Apart” by She Wants Revenge, the ringtone on my iPhone).

“Hello?”

“Will you volunteer to produce the Peace Couture fashion show again this year?”

It was my dear friend and partner in fashion, Pamela Bloomgren.

Peace Couture: An Evening of Music, Art and Fashion is a fundraiser for The Spring of Tampa Bay (domestic violence prevention and emergency shelter). Doing the show means contributing to a worthy cause. It means collaborating with other creative artists and highlighting amazing talent. It means making something beautiful in the spirit of hope and community. And it means I get to make fashion happen with Pam, which is our favorite activity.

“Yes,” I said. And that sums up how VERTICAL Tampa Bay magazine and MOD Productions partnered again for Peace Couture, taking place Nov. 9 in Ybor City.

Four local fashion designers, two boutiques, 30 models, a team of hair and makeup artists, Mrs. World 2012, and one live band will rock the runway. Serious talent is showing up. Designers Sandra Hagen, Spathose, House of Donshey and Wicked Betty will showcase looks, along with La France and The Spring boutiques. Local band Zulu Wave will perform live, adding a dramatic element that sets the Peace Couture runway show apart from the crowd.

“Peace Couture is a multimedia event highlighting local fashion designers, artists and musicians,” explains Kurt Piazza, assistant director of development for The Spring. “The motivation behind introducing visual art and live music was to expand the audience and attract a more diverse crowd.”

The event at The Italian Club will feature a nail-art bar provided by Bella Faccia Med Spa, artist installations by Danny Olda and Gigi Lage, pop-up boutique shopping, Cointreau Champagne cocktails, and an after-party with rock band Guiltmaker.

“Our aim is to make domestic violence a bit less threatening,” Kurt says. “Many people still feel awkward or uncomfortable talking about domestic violence, so we are presenting the message of domestic violence awareness in a more positive and creative way. Peace Couture allows us to be more dynamic in how we attract new ‘friends’ to The Spring, while still stressing the importance of the great need for our services in the community.”

Tickets to Peace Couture include complimentary signature cocktails and hors d’oeuvres, access to art installations, pop-up retail (provided by A&A Boutique and Crème de la Crème), the nail art bar, fashion show and live bands. Individual tickets are $50, VIP is $75 (including one reserved fashion show seat and a gift bag); a 4-pack of general admission tickets is $150. To order, visit TheSpring.org.

For some, the nail art bar alone is enough to get them there (if I wasn’t going in an official capacity, I would be one of them). But add to that an evening full of discovery featuring art, music and fashion by killer local talent and that’s cause to show.

I asked Kurt to divulge his hopes for this year’s event. “We hope everyone comes out to join us on Fri., Nov. 9, to support The Spring. We also hope that we encourage new members from the community to get involved in domestic violence awareness. And, lastly, we hope that everyone remembers that 1 in 4 women will experience domestic violence in her lifetime… and that is what The Spring of Tampa Bay hopes to prevent!”

Come in peace to Peace Couture.

Look for a “slice” of Leslie Joy Ickowitz’s VERTICAL Tampa Bay magazine in next week’s issue of Creative Loafing.

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