Byline: Jeffrey DeSouza Photography
Easter Seals provides high-quality services to ensure that all children with disabilities or other special needs and their families have equal opportunities to live, learn, work and play in their communities.
For Easter Seals, fundraising is not just one event, but an ongoing affair.
However, the Easter Seals of North Georgia has, what can probably be classified as its largest fundraising event annually in the Fashion Uncorked Designer Competition. Norma Center, its Developmental Coordinator, might reasonably argue that it is not the Fashion Uncorked event itself, rather the aftermath that is largest event of the year!
Norma Center is the Developmental Coordinator for Easter Seals of North Georgia. She has worked with Easter Seals for three years. She continues to connect with community and bring about awareness of Easter Seals and its fundraising efforts.
Annually, Easter Seals North Georgia presents Fashion Uncorked, a designer runway competition. The competition is a fundraiser to assist in the provision of services to disabled/special needs children and provides a forum to introduce emerging designers to the fashion and entertainment industry. Designers are challenged to produce four jewelry-inspired creations: children’s wear (modeled by the children of Easter Seals) with teddy bear wear, day wear and evening wear.
The Fashion Uncorked 2013 event
The Fashion Uncorked fashion show was held on Saturday, February 9, 2013 at the America’s Mart/Apparel Mart, located in the heart of downtown Atlanta, Georgia.
In alignment with Center’s original vision, spotlight showcases were presented from previous Fashion Uncorked winners, Angelica Cuervo and Sidratu Maju.
On showcase was also the artistic works of Ghazaleh Coulter.
“My mission is to express female beauty in its most immaculate form through the art I create, and reflect the freedom it desires!” ~ Ghazaleh Coulter www.GhazalehCoulter.com
The inspirational jewelry was provided by Enjeanious and Lady Lucia.
Performances from the Atlanta Ballet and R&B Singer Karmella Daniel enhanced the evening.
The Fashion Uncorked 2013 hosts were Christina Pullara and Dr. Courtney Hammonds.
The VIP show and red carpet host was Renee Knorr. The judges were: Rafael Cox, Erica Benoit, Mori Green, Sherie J. Nevett, Mary Jo Miller, and Tracee Dundas.
The ten competing fashion designers (Vanessa Henderson, Keon Brown, Mayola Welborn, Anecia Davis, Christian Harris, Morgan Johnson, Sara Shelton, Tania Zavala, Lawanda Scales, and Shekina Moore) presented colorful creations that expressed unique points of view which culminated into a great fashion show.
The winner was Keon Brown. His pieces consisted of a white peplum top with gold lame-esque pant daywear set and a black spiked-bust evening gown complete with dark red roses in full bloom skirting.
“The experience was outstanding. I enjoyed every part of it. Especially the way the audience and judges receive me and my designs.” ~ Keon Brown, winner of Fashion Uncorked 2013 Designer Competition.
As Fashion Uncorked 2013 winner, Brown will receive a spread in Kontrol Magazine, rountrip airfare to Los Angeles to attend LA Fashion Week,and a showcase in New Orleans Fashion Week 2014.
After the after party: The true focus: Fundraising
Now that the Fashion Uncorked 2013 event is over, the hardest work has begun. Maximizing on the exposure that the event provides to capitalize on receipt of funds to continue to provide much needed services to children with disabilities or other special needs and their families.
Norma Center was busy as every and Atlanta Fashion Examiner (AFE) had only a moment to touch base with her during the post event activities. Center was busy getting lost and found items to their rightful owners and beginning event follow-up activities. Not having a moment to take a breath, AFE was happy to inform her that all reviews received regarding the show were extremely positive.
Although goal reports were not available at the time that AFE spoke with Norma Center, Fashion Uncorked publicist Lenora B. Woods, posted on FaceBook that the event was sold out, as well as a press release that reported 500 attendees and over $20,000.
“... was amazing at Fashion Uncorked! Sold out seats & flashing lights everywhere!...” ~ Lenora B. Woods, Elle Nora Agency
A couple of the families being assisted through the Easter Seals of North Georgia service programs were available at the Fashion Uncorked 2013 event. It was so heartwarming to hear that a child was able to find his voice due to the speech therapy afforded to him via the Easter Seals programs and that a young lady was able to advance academically due to Easter Seals partnership with Sylvan Learning Center. One of the mothers also spoke on how the parent support teams and group counseling sessions made such a great impact on her ability to be strong for her child.
The result, ... Easter Seals of North Georgia and Fashion Uncorked continue to make a difference in the community, in the world of fashion and in the lives of families of disabled and/or special needs individuals.
To learn more about Easter Seals of North Georgia, please visit: www.northgeorgia.easterseals.com
To learn ore about Fashion Uncorked, please visit: