Savvy shoppers put fundraising and money-saving in fashion – by swapping their clothes.
Tea and Togs saw about 90 people turn up bringing unwanted clothing to swap, have a sparkling afternoon tea and watch a fashion show by Newcastle’s Love Niche Studio featuring real-women models.
The event, held at the Novotel, Kingston Park, has raised more than £2,000 for Smile For Life Children’s Charity, supporting disabled and disadvantaged young people in the north east.
Paula Gascoigne, Chief Executive of Smile For Life, said: “We are very proud of the Tea and Togs events but this year was the best yet. The real-women models were wonderful and the outfits they wore from Love Niche were stunning.
“The quality of the clothes brought in for swapping was fantastic – I got a beautiful dress still with the labels on! I love walking away with a free outfit – it’s the ultimate thrill!”
She added: “The fact that we’ve raised £2,000 is fantastic and will help so many young people with disabilities live easier and happier lives.”
Tea and Togs, now in its sixth year, collaborated with love Niche Studio, based in Clayton Street, Newcastle, who styled 10 real-women aged from 30 – 80 in three different collections.
One of those modelling on the day was Rachel Reaveley. The 32-year-old mum-of-two said: “It was lots of fun trying on the pretty outfits from Love Niche. I ended up wearing clothes I would have never dreamed of trying on, but I actually felt great.
“It was lovely that all of the models were real, everyday women that others could relate to. It helps others to see what the outfits really look like. Nisha styled everyone really well according to their style and shape.”
Nisha Vedhara, Designer and Stylist of Love Niche, said: “It was great to be a part of Tea and Togs, it was a wonderful day raising money for a fantastic local charity. It was also a great way to get women together and celebrate being women.
“Our ethos is always about women learning to appreciate their bodies, no matter what their age, size and shape. We want people to understand that they are wearing the clothes, rather than the clothes wearing them. The fabulous ‘real’ women on the catwalk ranging in age from 30 to 80 certainly helped to illustrate this.”
Cash was raised through ticket sales, raffle tickets, and fees from stall holders.
One of those attending the event was Louise Ellison. The 37-year-old said: “I am really impressed with the standard of clothes brought in to swap – I got a lovely new outfit! It’s nice to see someone else walk away with clothes you’ve brought in and know they’re appreciated.
“This was my first time at Tea and Togs and I’ll definitely be back. It’s a great way to spend an afternoon with the girls and all for a good cause.”
For more information on Smile For Life go to www.smileforlife.org.uk or call the office in Gosforth on 0191 2844166.