Fashion show gives pets a second chance

Organizer Linda Roberts shows off one of the donations made to WAIF for “Rescues and Runways.” - Liz Burlingame/Whidbey News-Times
Organizer Linda Roberts shows off one of the donations made to WAIF for “Rescues and Runways.”
— image credit: Liz Burlingame/Whidbey News-Times

Fashion, fur and animal awareness usually don’t mix, but that won’t be the case for tonight’s fashion show at Inferno Restaurant.

Models styled in the new Maurices fall collection will strut the runway alongside animals.

The event is called “Rescues and Runways,” a show sponsored by Maurices to benefit the WAIF animal shelter. Each of the animals are rescued pets that are being fostered as they await adoption.

“WAIF always has an abundance of animals,” store manager Linda Roberts said. “It would be great to spread awareness and help get these pets adopted.”

Similar pet-themed fashion shows are happening nationwide as part of a Maurices campaign. They hope to collect 5,000 pounds of supplies for about 700 shelters across the U.S.

Roberts said the store will model its entire trend for fall from rock n’ roll to southern comfort and casual to dressy. The clothes range from sizes one to 24.

“It targets the 20 somethings, but to be honest with you, we have people up to their 60s shopping here. It’s all in their attitude and personality,” Roberts said.

The show will be held in Inferno’s upstairs banquet room, and Roberts says to expect a lot of color. Many of the clothes feature hot purples, lime greens and turquoise.

“About one-third of our models are actually customers that we picked off our sales floor while they were shopping,” Roberts said, adding that the others are local merchants or WAIF animal handlers.

There will also be some fashion for the pets. They will don “Friends for Life Charms,” in which half the charm is clipped to the pet’s collar and the other is kept by the owner.

Roberts will act as the onstage emcee to describe the outfits and the history of the animals.

“We’ll see if we can’t get anyone adopted that night,” Roberts said.

During the show, there will also be a silent auction with about seven auction baskets.

Tonight’s show is free to the public and Maurices staff will ask for donations at the door, either in pet supplies such as food or toys or in monetary donations. Inferno Restaurant is providing a menu for food and refreshments.

The show begins at 6 p.m. and Inferno Restaurant is located at 930 SE Pioneer Way.

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