Dare to Wear Love to close World MasterCard Fashion Week

Vibrant runway show to showcase Canadian designers

in support of Stephen Lewis Foundation

February 10th, 2012 — Toronto ON — Hoax Couture and the Fashion Design Council of Canada (FDCC) are thrilled to collaborate once again with the Stephen Lewis Foundation on the third Dare to Wear Love gala fashion show. African-inspired designs, created by more than 25 Canadian designers, will hit the runway at 9 p.m. on Friday, March 16 during World MasterCard Fashion Week at David Pecaut Square in Toronto.

A limited amount of tickets to Dare to Wear Love are open to the public and available to purchase online for $75 each or $300 each for a VIP package (which includes one front or second row seat, a special gift bag, and exclusive access to the cocktail parties before and after the show). Proceeds from ticket sales will support the Stephen Lewis Foundation and its community-level organizations that work to improve the lives of women, orphans, grandmothers and people living with HIV and AIDS in Africa.

Talented Canadian designers including Brian Bailey, David Dixon, Adrian Wu, Paul Hardy, Linda Lundström, Pat McDonagh, Izzy Camilleri, Lida Baday, Greta Constantine, Lovas Wesley Badanjak, and many more, will create one-of-a-kind ensembles from six yards of African-made fabrics to be modelled on celebrities, entertainers and models.

In addition to the fashion, guests at the show will also be treated to an inspiring speech by Stephen Lewis, chair of the board of the Stephen Lewis Foundation.

“Dare to Wear Love is such a creative and genius invention! The Stephen Lewis Foundation is both honoured and excited to be a part of it,” said Ilana Landsberg-Lewis, Executive Director, Stephen Lewis Foundation. “There is a profound symmetry between the way the fashion community in Canada brings awareness and fundraising around the issue of AIDS, and the way in which grassroots organizations at the frontlines of the AIDS pandemic in Africa use the arts to bring healing and hope to their communities.”

In December, the Stephen Lewis Foundation Arts Fund was created to shine a celebratory spotlight on the visionary use of the arts by African community-based organizations responding to the AIDS pandemic. The Arts Fund has ignited the commitment of the Canadian artistic community, who share a deep understanding of the power of the arts to give voice to grief, heal the deep wounds of loss, break through stigma, and nurture hope. Since its inception in 2009, the Dare to Wear Love campaign has been an integral part of growing this initiative.

To complement Dare to Wear Love, Hoax Couture created the Dare to Wear Red campaign, which challenges Canadians to raise funds for the Stephen Lewis Foundation by wearing something red every day for the month of February. The top three fundraisers will have the chance to fulfill their dream and model one-of-a-kind designs by Susan Dicks & Co. on the Dare to Wear Love catwalk.

For those not able to attend the show, support for Dare to Wear Love can still be shown by making a donation at DareToWearLove.com. As well, the Textile Museum of Canada is showcasing the original garments Canadian designers had created for the two previous Dare to Wear Love shows, including pieces from Brian Bailey, David Dixon, Fashion Crimes and Linda Lundström, until Saturday, May 12.

*Celebrity models and special performances to be announced in upcoming media release.

Website: www.daretowearlove.com
Twitter: @daretowearlove
Facebook: DaretoWearLove

About the Stephen Lewis Foundation:
The Stephen Lewis Foundation was founded to deliver funds directly into the hands of tremendously effective community-based projects working determinedly to turn the tide of AIDS in Africa. Stephen Lewis is the former United Nations Special Envoy on HIV/AIDS in Africa, former Canadian Ambassador to the United Nations, former Deputy Director of UNICEF, and former leader of the Ontario New Democratic Party. Since its inception, the Foundation has supported more than 300 grassroots projects in 15 of the sub-Saharan African countries hardest hit by the AIDS pandemic. Its mandate is to fund projects that support women who are ill and struggling to survive; assist orphans and other AIDS-affected children; reach heroic grandmothers caring for their orphan grandchildren; and sustain associations of people living with HIV and AIDS. http://www.stephenlewisfoundation.org

About Hoax Couture:
Hoax Couture has been at the cutting edge of Canadian fashion for more than 20 years. The duo currently runs a couture fashion studio in Toronto. The courage and resilience of communities across Africa in the face of the pandemic has inspired Hoax Couture to use their skills and relationships to raise awareness and funds to support their work for the Stephen Lewis Foundation. Hoax Couture believes the fashion community has the capacity, heart and ingenuity to bring the urgent goal of turning the tide of AIDS in Africa to reality. http://www.hoaxcouture.com

About the Fashion Design Council of Canada (FDCC):
Established in 1999, the Fashion Design Council of Canada is a non-governmental, not-for-profit national organization created to support Canadian fashion designers and the Canadian fashion industry. FDCC President Robin Kay is credited with spearheading Canada’s inaugural Fashion Week. The FDCC owns and produces Fashion Week, now in its 13th successful year, creating ongoing corporate sponsorships, and arranging the calendar and concurrent events. The bi-annual event has garnered international respect and is the second largest Fashion Week in North America. For more information, please visit www.worldmastercardfashionweek.com.

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Michelle Easton, rock-it promotions, inc., at 416.656.0707 ext. 103
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Debra Goldblatt, rock-it promotions, inc., at 416.656.0707 ext. 101
or debra@rockitpromo.com