Auction of Red Dresses by Top South African Designers to Benefit Heart and Stroke Foundation South Africa
In support of the Heart and Stroke Foundation South Africa, MasterCard Worldwide has announced that it will be presenting the inaugural Go Red for Women – Little Red Dress initiative – to be showcased at the MasterCard Style in the City event taking place in Cape Town from the 29 October to 1 November 2009.
Go Red for Women presented by MasterCard will see eight sought-after South African designers each creating their own unique beautiful red dress, which will be worn on the runway by eight well-known South African female personalities, magazine editors and businesswomen.
The exclusive red dresses will be designed, created and modelled by the following designers and women at the opening gala dinner of MasterCard Style in the City on the 29 October:
1. Jackie Burger, editor, Elle, for Abigail Betz
2. Jill Docherty, business leader, MasterCard Africa, for Gavin Rajah
3. Jo-Ann Strauss, presenter, Top Billing, and host of MasterCard Style in the City, for Gabi Rosenwerth
4. Kate Wilson, editor, Marie Claire, for Marianne Fassler
5. Lerato Tshabalala, editor, Sunday Times, Lifestyle for David Tlale
6. Michelle van Breda, editor, Sarie, for Stefania Morland
7. Pnina Venster, editor, Glamour, for Jacques Lagrange
8. Samantha Page, editor, O Magazine, for Bongiwe Walaza
All eight dresses will be on auction on the evening of the 29 October. There will be a reserved minimum bid for each dress and all proceeds raised will benefit The Heart and Stroke Foundation South Africa. The dresses will then be put on display for the duration of MasterCard Style in the City to give all attendees an opportunity to view the beautiful designs, and how much was raised for the Foundation.
Photograph: Stefania Morland – Red Dress Collection
“The Go Red for Women initiative, symbolised by the little red dress, is an important platform for us to bring home the message of heart health to women in South Africa. Our collaboration with MasterCard will enable us to get our message across in a way that is close to women’s hearts: fashion,” says Ashleigh Kuttner, Programme Director: Projects, Heart and Stroke Foundation South Africa.
The initiative specifically aims to raise awareness of the risk of heart disease and strokes – which are the number-one killer of women worldwide. It is also part of the international Go Red for Women movement that aims to empower women with the knowledge and tools to take better care of their own and their families’ heart health.
An alarmingly small number of women in South Africa are aware cardiovascular disease remains one of the major killers of women – one in three before the age of 60 will suffer from some form of heart condition. With the right knowledge and tools, women can protect themselves and their loved ones.
“The red dress is the symbol of the initiative, serving as a red alert for women to take action to protect their heart health,” said Jill Docherty, business leader, Marketing & Communications in Africa for MasterCard Worldwide.
“MasterCard has long been involved in programmes reaching out to women to educate and empower them. We would like to encourage all potential bidders to express their generosity and bid for a little red dress taking a big message from the heart, about the heart, to the women in their lives,” she says.
“The Foundation is so grateful to MasterCard for their commitment to and support of Heart and Stroke Foundation South Africa. We are reaching out to all bidders to dig deep when they bid for the dresses on the 29 October; we will put all funds raised to very good use for the purposes of the Foundation,” concludes Kuttner.
The upcoming MasterCard Style in the City event is taking place in Cape Town from the 29 October to 1 November 2009 at the V&A Waterfront. The four-day interactive fashion, beauty and health event will feature the fabulous fashion-duo Trinny and Susannah of BBC’s Undress the Nation, who will be entertaining South African audiences with their Style Academy that has already proved its popularity internationally.
MasterCard and Women
Go Red For Women presented by MasterCard is among other initiatives that MasterCard has undertaken to support, educate and empower women. In May this year, MasterCard supported the Singapore Heart Foundation with Go Red For Women presented by MasterCard. The initiative involved ten rising fashion designers from Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia, Thailand and the Philippines, who created their own masterpiece of a red dress that was auctioned for the cause.
MasterCard also worked with the Hong Kong Heart Foundation on a similar campaign for the MasterCard Luxury Week 2009. In support of the Hong Kong Heart Foundation, MasterCard auctioned four red dresses specially designed by internationally-renowned Hong Kong designers. Part of MasterCard Luxury Week Hong Kong 2009, the exclusive red dresses by Shanghai Tang, Dorian Ho, Vivienne Tam, and Ports 1961 were shown at the closing show—The Red Dress Collection presented by MasterCard.
Another women-focused initiative is the U21 Global Scholarship for Women in Travel and Tourism launched in 2006 to provide scholarships to working women professionals to develop their leadership skills and realise their full potential in the area of travel and tourism.
MasterCard has dedicated significant resources to knowledge leadership of women. Its ongoing annual MasterCard Worldwide Index of Women’s Advancement measures the socio-economic development of women across 21 markets in Asia/Pacific, Middle East and Africa.
Photograph: Gavin Rajah – Red Dress Collection
The Red Dress Collection presented by MasterCard:
The Designers and their Red Creations:
I wanted to design a beautiful dress that was also very versatile, glamorous, timeless and ageless – something that could be worn in many different ways, and that looked like a totally different gown every time you wear it, (the perfect travelling companion). Taking into account the fact that there’s no way of knowing who the lucky lady that will walk off with the dress will be, the dress will fit quite a few sizes. This dress can be worn as a long skirt, teamed with various tops, as a cheeky baby doll dress, or a glamorous off the shoulder ball gown worn with a generous tulle skirt to give it more volume. It can even morph into a sexy halter neck. So, this red beauty is a coat of many colours, made of luxurious red silk, and will make whoever wears it look and feel like a million dollars.
This delicate creation epitomises my style. I have over-dyed some silk tulle, and silk chiffon. Together these fabrics have been draped and intertwined to give substance to an otherwise very diaphanous silhouette. The detail is in the dye technique and the texturing of the fabric. There is no additional beading or trims to distract from the sensuality of the colour and the feel of the luxurious fabric.
My creation is inspired by femininity itself. It is made of co-ordinated textures, rough and smooth. The design is made to enhance the beauty of a woman’s body shape and movement. It is a 30 panelled dress with appliqué trims crafted down the panels. It is a combination of stretch satin, tulle and sequin which is matte and shiny.
Cut on the bias in the finest silk charmeuse, the dress is inspired by antique Chinese lacquer floral motifs. Hand beaded in jet crystal and glass beads with a combination of Chantilly lace – the dress is fluid and has exaggerated movement on the hemline. Think 1940′s Shanghai Art Deco with a contemporary edge to it. True to the Rajah signature it is ultra feminine and dramatic.