Zoe Patterson, a student at Lamar High School in Houston TX, started the fashion show her sophomore year, in 2008, in order to fulfill a requirement in the Middle Years Program with the IB Diploma. She found the Pink Ribbons Project over the summer before her sophomore year and knew immediately she wanted the fashion shows to benefit their organization.
The Pink Ribbons Project was started in 1995 when Jane Weiner discovered her sister, Susan Rafte, had been diagnosed with breast cancer. Growing up they hd always been best friends. Jane wanted to do something for her best friend and organized a dance performance in New York City that combined many well known dance companies from all over. The dance performance raised enough money to send Susan and a few other women to Congress to fight to legalize certain drugs that had been proven to help fight breast cancer in other countries. The FDA approved certain drugs and one of them, Taxotere, Susan was prescribed. She is now a multi-year survivor and was the Executive Director of Pink Ribbons Project for many years. Jane danced to save Susan's life, and succeeded.
"I chose Pink Ribbons Project because I loved The Story. Dancing has always been a big part of my life and the idea that someone was able to save another person’s life by dancing was really inspirational. So at the end of the summer I asked Loubel Cruz, now the Executive Director of Pink Ribbons Project, if they would let the fashion show benefit them, and although I’m sure they though I was insane, they said yes."
The show has grown tremendously since the first show in 2008. The first Tickle Me Pink Fashion Show was held at the Lamar High School Little Theatre and showcased 15 student designers, one designer drove from Louisiana to participate. That night we had around 270 people attend the show and raised about $5,600 in profit for the organization. Seeing as the maximum capacity of the LHS Little Theatre was 180 people, we decided the next year to have the show at the River Oaks Theatre, one of Houston's historical landmarks. In 2009, Tickle Me Pink Fashion Show -Masquerade Edition- drew a crowd of 350 people and we had 25 student designers show their work. What was also amazing about the second year was the enormous amount of student volunteers who helped out back stage, during the reception, and in the production of the show. We had almost 100 student volunteers, not including designers or models.
The fashion show is truly an amazing opportunity for students from all over south Texas to participate in their community and be able to interact with their peers in a new business like manner. They learn responsibility, leadership, and they gain experience in an area of the fashion and production industries that they may want to pursue later in life.
-Texas Goes Pink-
On Thursday, April 29th, 2010, the courtyard of West Ave at River Oaks was flooded with a sea of pink! With thirty-three designers and over 150 models backstage we had a fantastic show. Over 450 came to watch the city's youth support Pink Ribbons Project and we raised over $5,500 in profit bringing the total profit of Tickle Me Pink Fashion Shows over the last three years to over $18,000 and the total amount of profit and underwriting to almost $30,000. The show started with a performance by Guerilla Foco Clan, a local student band, and during the reception we were delighted to have The Handshake and The Transco Empire, also student bands, play for the guests. The show honored Ms. Jeannine Peace, a up and coming jewelry designer who dressed some of the models in her beautiful work. Thank you so much to everyone who helped make Texas Goes Pink such a success and I can't wait to see everyone at Tickle Me Pink Fashion Show 2011!
Zoe Patterson, Event Chairman
Ellen Pellegrin, Assistant Charimen
David Wicoff, Master of Ceremonies
Alex Goss, DJ
Ben Hoffman, Graphic Designer