Red Dress Collection raises heart disease awareness with glamour
Thom Navarro, Erin Weness, and Maria Legatt
The second-annual Red Dress Collection closed out the first weekend of Minneapolis-St. Paul Fashion Week at the Graves 601 Hotel. Produced by MNfashion, the event brought together more than a dozen talented local designers and celebrities for a charitable night of giving and glamour to raise awareness for women's heart disease.
CW's Carly Aplin hosted the event in a black Realia by Jen dress that combined lace, cutouts, and daring thigh-high slits for a truly eye-catching look. Before the runway show, Aplin introduced Maria Legatt, a survivor of congestive heart failure that told an emotional story about her own battle with heart disease from a young age. The two were also joined onstage by young heart disease survivor Erin Weness who has gone through several open heart surgeries -- and isn't even 10 years old. These personal tales brought the event to a new level, and served as an important reminder of what the night was all about: helping others with heart disease.
Amelia Santaniello in Richard Beckel.
WCCO anchor Amelia Santaniello opened the runway show in a stunning piece by Richard Beckel. The strapless gown, accented with origami-style butterfly bows at the neckline and above the train, had an ultra-glam vibe.
Heart disease survivor Krista Wanous donned a playful design by Samantha Rei of Blasphemina's Closet. The mid-length scarlet dress came equipped with the fullness of a petticoat underneath the skirt, a signature element of the designer. Swathed in delicate, dotted black mesh, the Lolita-like getup came together in the back with an exaggerated ribbon laced up corset-style. The steampunk-inspired look also included a jaunty, miniature top hat with gold detailing and gold-spiked wedges.
Alix Kendall of Fox 9 owned the catwalk in a retro-inspired outfit by Rachel Blomgren. Perfect for the anchor's petite frame, the creation consisted of an a-line skirt with a line of detail buttons down the back and a long-sleeved peplum top.
Guild Collective's Pam Mondale wore a glamorous Emma Berg creation. The sleeveless dress hugged at the waist, with the pencil skirt bottom hitting at the knees. The look was topped by a flowing, floor-length train that billowed behind Mondale on the runway boasting a chevron design.
Rena Sarigianopoulos in Caroline Hayden
Rena Sarigianopoulos of KARE 11 looked positively old Hollywood in a Caroline Hayden design. The strapless dress was covered in extremely detailed beading from bodice to hem, and sparkled as Sarigianopolous walked down the catwalk. Adding to the glam-factor was an attached cape that trailed down to the floor with an elegant train. When the train proved to be less practical in the crowded lobby post-show, it became a draped shawl over her arms.
Other Minnesota celebs that hit the runway included Allison Kaplan in a free-flowing Lindsey Hopkins dress, Falen Bonsett in a Christopher Straub piece, and Sara Talebi in a showstopping Monique Lhuillier dress, among others.
The show seemed like it was over in a flash. And while the fashion was undeniably eye-catching, the true winners of the night were the heart disease survivors on the catwalk and off: All the proceeds from the event benefitted the American Heart Association.
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