In St Andrews, February is synonymous with ‘fashion show season’ – frankly I couldn’t have thought of a better event to start the season than by the Charities Campaign’s Catwalk charity fashion show. Part of RAG week, Catwalk differentiates itself from heavy weights FS and DON’T WALK by developing concepts that can be replicated in real life, exemplified through this year’s concept of ‘the undergrowth’. A representation of urban grime culture, I felt the concept was so far removed from what we are used to seeing in St Andrews, making it even more interesting.
As I walked into 601, I was immediately handed a glass of Eden Mill Gin & Tonic (the best of both worlds – tasty and supporting local businesses). The music was loud and everyone was buoyant, I found that I was swaying along to most of the tracks played by Tanya, Catwalk’s Head of Music. On the TVs, there were pictures of the models being displayed and a fast paced video mashup which helped to demonstrate the disintegration of fame, success and luxury. Throughout the show, the TVs were streaming what was going happening on the catwalk, which I had to commend them on.
The goody bag was a mix of snacks from Propercorn (practically a St Andrean staple), Goods Full Stop and Walkers shortbread, discount codes, but by far the most exciting item was the pre-drink from Twisted Halo drinks. All in all, a fun prelude to an exciting Saturday night that was to follow.
Glitter and patterns were abundant, both on the catwalk and amongst the guests. The audience were dressed in a range of outfits, from black tie to beach prints, making both the stage and the crowds around the catwalk fascinating sights in their own right. Key highlights of the show included the highly anticipated lingerie segment, the faux fur coats and the kilt tribute (an amazing celebration of Scottish culture!). The models interacted with the audience throughout and danced on the catwalk, far removed from the stiff image of models on runways world wide. By the end of the Fashion show, everyone was dancing to Mambo no. 5 as the models and committee came out and strut their stuff one last time.
As with most events, the transition between the event and the after party can be a challenge. While not being the committee’s fault, the stage area had to be cleared out, leaving guests crammed into the bar area, causing many to relocate into the main bar. Despite the window between the show and the after party being rather short, it was still a period during which some guests might have left – but as a reviewer I can see no way of getting around it. The music at the after party gave off a different vibe from that of the show, with Union DJ Joel Andersson adding a new dimension to the event.
As part of the Charities campaign, 100% of the funds raised from the tickets and the exhilarating auction during the interval for bidding on a pair of tickets for one of the London Fashion Week Men’s Launch party (which went for £340), will go to Frontline Fife Homelessness Services, Anthony Nolan and Women for Women International UK, which are on the local, national and international level respectively. If I had to sum up catwalk in a few of words it would be cheekbones, cutting edge and Charity. I look forward to next year’s edition eagerly!
All photos courtesy of Lightbox St Andrews