Edinburgh Charity Fashion Show

Feature by Morgan McTiernan | 28 Feb 2015

Edinburgh Charity Fashion Show (ECFS 2015) is celebrating its fifteenth year, with this year's event being held in the city's Usher Hall on Saturday 14th March. The fashion show is run solely by university students, who plan to create an evening that combines fashion, art and entertainment – all in a bid to raise money and awareness for their chosen charities.

Since its formation in 2000, the non-profit organisation has donated nearly a quarter of a million pounds to various charities. The aim of this year’s event is to "Free the Elephant in the Room" and ECFS has partnered with two charities, Elephant Family and the Scottish Association for Mental Health. ECFS hopes to both raise awareness of mental health issues (one in four people are known to suffer from mental illness at some point in their lifetime) and to also publicise the plight of the Asian Elephant (where 90% of the species has thought to have been poached in this decade alone).

Last year’s event proved to be a huge success and was housed in the stunning National Museum of Scotland, one of Scotland's greatest art historical landmarks. This allowed ECFS to proclaim its theme of 'This is Edinburgh'. ECFS partnered with the charity WaterAid, raising £20,000 for the charity to provide access to safe water (and the necessary tools of sanitation and hygiene) to the poorest communities in 27 countries across Africa, Asia, and Central America. At last year’s show models wore brands such as Joseph, Walker Slater, French Connection, Hawick and 21st Century Kilts, Diane Von Furstenberg, A.L.C, Mark Fast, Alice Temperley, and Walker Slater.

This year's fashion show aims to be a platform for local brands and stores to showcase their work, with confirmed designers including Herman Brown, Those Were the Days Vintage, Fabhatrix (a luxury hat shop situated in Edinburgh's Old Town) and Rail, a pop-up shop and gallery that is a collaboration between designer Gigi Ettedgui and artist Oisin Gallagher. The renowned Armstrongs vintage store will also showcase a selection of their finest garments.

Georgina Futong and Louisa Dearlove, the event's chairwomen, told us: "The Edinburgh Charity Fashion show is definitely a unique event in the student social calendar. The committee consists of over 60 students who contribute a variety of incredible artistic, creative and business talents. It has become an integral part of Edinburgh and is getting better every year. What makes ECFS special is that it is a year-long campaign to raise money for both deserving and international causes, and showcases the best of student creativity."

She continues: "The whole year builds to the show itself, with a launch party, pop-up shop, and multiple photo-shoots, all of which have taken time and effort from the committee, who are now eagerly gearing up to what we believe will be a truly unforgettable evening."

With this in mind, we are sure that ECFS 2015 is set to be just as much a success as previous years. As the official partner PR agency Bell Pottinger said, “the literal and the metaphorical elephant needs to be freed from the darkroom that is ignorance and taboo,” and through fashion, ECFS aim to do just that.

100% of the proceeds of the event will go to the chosen charities and there is also a ticket to suit everybody's budget: tables cost £60 per person and fit 10 people, front row seats cost £35 and standard seats cost £25. There will also be a raffle and auction, with prize details for both being released one week before the show. The auction will be open online (via the ECFS site) for those who want to get their bids in early. Expect prizes to include holiday getaways, custom made suits, designer clothing, beauty products and booze - what's not to like?!

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8.30pm, Sat 14 Mar

Tickets are available via the Usher Hall website usherhall.co.uk/