Scottish fashion show raises money for international charity
Published: Wednesday, April 25, 2012
Updated: Tuesday, April 24, 2012 19:04
The annual “From Scotland with Love” fashion show celebrated its 10th anniversary this April at the Liberty Theater in Times Square. As always, the stars came out to strut their stuff on the catwalk in designer kilts and plaid couture, all in an effort to raise money for charity– and The Ticker had a front row seat.
Originally called “Dressed to Kilt,” the event has come a long way since its humble debut in April 2003. Since its inception, it has become more than just a showcase of Scottish culture and fashion.
“Our aims are still to put on a charity fundraiser to benefit good and noble causes and to promote the more contemporary and changing image of our home country in the USA,” wrote chairmen Dr. Geoffrey Scott Carroll and Peter Morris in the event’s program.
As the years have passed, many big names have contributed to the event, bringing attention to those causes; the list includes celebrities like actors Sir Sean Connery, Anne Hathaway, Chris Noth, and Gerard Butler.
“It’s our job, particularly as celebrities, to lend our voice […] and encourage others,” talk show host Wendy Williams said exclusively to The Ticker.
WPIX anchorwoman Tamsen Fadal echoed Williams’ sentiment. She has been a longtime supporter of the Wounded Warrior Project, one of the evening’s benefiting charities.
“When you get some big names behind this like they’re going to have on the runway it just […] brings it to light,” she stated.
Along with the Wounded Warrior Project, a US-based non-profit that provides aid to injured servicemen and women, proceeds from the evening’s event also went to the Scottish non-profit Cash for Kids charity that helps impoverished children across the nation.
“I’m a mother, and kids are kids whether you live in Jersey like me and my kid, or whether you live in Scotland,” said Williams. “In the case of the vets […] when our guys and girls fight we should always be ready to lend them a helping hand when they come back here.”
Along with charity, the event is also meant to showcase Scottish culture and fashion in an effort to “continue to show that Scotland is, was, and always will be, the best little country in the world,” as Dr. Carroll announced at the start of the event.
The Scots talking on the red carpet were very excited about the event. In particular, Miss Scotland Jennifer Reoch felt New York City was the best place to be to celebrate.
“I think there’s just so many different mix of cultures […] it’s nice to celebrate the diversity of the city,” she said.
As for the runway show, this year marks Scottish rugby star Richie Gray’s second appearance on the catwalk. Dubbed the “Scottish Rugby Tree,” the 6’10 lock for Scotland’s national team felt coming back was a no-brainer.
“Last year was a fantastic show, really enjoyed myself and, obviously, it’s for a really good cause, so it’s easy to just come back,” Gray said. “I’m glad to be back.”
The runway featured breathtaking creations and designs by popular designers like Vivienne Westwood and Gwen Stefani, as well as Scottish designers Joyce Paton, Spencer Railton, and Veronica MacIssac.
As for celebrity models, actors Ioan Grufudd (The Fantastic Four), Matthew Modine (The Dark Knight Rises) and Matthew Rhys (ABC’s Brothers & Sisters), and actresses Jill Hennessy (NBC’s Crossing Jordan) and Claire Holt (CW’s Vampire Diaries) walked the runway.
However, the true stars of the runway show that elicited a standing ovation from the audience were the US army veterans who head the Wounded Warrior Project, namely Marine Sgt. (ret.) Jeff Combs, Staff Sgt. (ret.) Dan Nevins and the President of the Board of Directors US Army Capt. (ret.) Dawn Halfaker.
While the event went off without a hitch, there were some obvious no-shows, including honorary chairmen Brian Cox CBE, Donald Trump, actor Kiefer Sutherland and two big name celebrity models, CW’s Gossip Girl actor Ed Westwick and New York Giant Ahmad Bradshaw. It was also difficult to pinpoint where the Liberty Theater was, as the theater itself technically no longer exists. It closed in 1933, and the space is now home to Famous Dave’s barbecue restaurant.
In the end, however, all of the guests were very enthusiastic and out to have a good time while supporting worthy causes.
“Kids and vets,” concluded Williams , as she summarized her reasons for attending – “and men in skirts!” she smiled. “How they doin’?”