Although the rest of the nation might view Alaska as a function-over-fashion locale, the Clare to Clare Fashion Show is evidence that there are plenty of fashion-savvy Anchoragites who know how to dress well and functionally.
The show is back for its second annual appearance tonight at the Dena'ina Center. The event showcases the work of local boutiques and artists with all the proceeds going to benefit a shelter for expectant mothers and women with children.
The Clare House provides temporary housing, food, and referrals for child care, substance abuse and mental health programs, affordable permanent housing, and employment and continuing education opportunities.
The event's director and creator is also a Clare, Clare Gauster.
Gauster worked as a fashion specialist outside of L.A. before changing career paths to become a teacher and event planner in Anchorage. Last year she designed a fashion line to display in a show that would benefit the Anchorage community. The Clare to Clare Fashion Show made its debut with overwhelming success, raising over $10,000 in one night.
“The fashion industry is largely superficial, which is why I left,” Gauster said. “Having the opportunity to work on a project like this that combines a cause I'm passionate about with an art form that I love is so special to me. There is so much passion and dynamic energy behind what these artists have to offer, and working for a cause like Clare House touches us all on a very human level. Artists understand hard times; so often, it is when people are in their hardest situations that they produce their best work.”
The fashion show this year is three times the size of last year's event and features lines from Infusion, Circular, Off the Rack, Bottoms, and Second Run. There will be performances by Melissa Mitchell, D.J. Kima Hamilton, H3 and Steven Alvarez. as well as a silent auction of Native Alaskan artwork.
“I hope that this event inspires people to do more in their communities,” Gauster said. “People who are in tough situations and have no support system rely on places like Clare House, and these kinds of places rely on the constant support from their communities.”
For more information and to buy tickets, visit clarehousebenefit.org.
Clare to Clare Fashion Show
Thursday, July 29, 6 p.m.
Dena'ina Center, downtown Anchorage
$30 General admission
$75 Exclusive runway seating