Doing good with style

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Artistic style in support of another good cause was the rage Tuesday night at the third annual VintageNOW fashion show in support of the Safe House for Women.

With the help of Deb Maevers' antique store, Pastimes Antiques, volunteers came together to produce the largest local fundraiser for the Safe House, which helps women who have suffered from domestic violence. From its crisis hotline to sheltering clients at an undisclosed location, many in abusive situations find help and support through this organization.

More than 40 local models strutted the runway, and the energy was infectious. Having moved from Buckners the first year to The Venue in year two, this year's event took place at the old Steve and Barry's location in the mall. It was an event where not only the models dressed up. Style pervaded the evening, and attendees were rewarded not only by contributing to a good cause -- raising more than $45,000 to date with additional contributions still arriving -- but by having great fun, too.

Style and art also played a role at the fifth annual Tailor Institute's "Diamond in the Rough" dinner benefiting autism research and support Oct. 27. This black-tie affair featured art by local artist and Southeast Missourian cartoonist Taylor Crowe, as well as photographs by his father, Dr. David Crowe, who founded the Tailor Institute in 2003.

Dr. Crowe regaled the audience with his inspiring perspective on individuals with autism learning to work and live independently, as did Tailor Institute executive director Jenny Knoderer. For those in attendance, it was a night filled with class, beauty and inspiration, all in benefit of a worthy cause.

For dress-up on the opposite end of the spectrum, also in support of a good cause, Cape came alive Oct. 25 with the 24th annual Southeast Showcase. Over the years this event has raised more than $720,000 to benefit patient services at Southeast Hospital, said Mary Burton-Hitt, director of the SoutheastHEALTH Foundation. And it's turned into quite an autumn annual tradition, with many of the more than 1,200 partygoers showing up in Halloween costumes. More than 47 area restaurants and vendors provided food for the event.

None of these events could take place without countless hours provided by volunteers or without the generous support of local families and merchants, who donate time, food, logistical support, money and, at the most basic level, their presence. Thank you to everyone involved. For photos of the events above, visit semissourian.com/multimedia. Doing good is rarely achieved with more style -- or fun.

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