Imago fashion show about empowering women

Imago is a fall fashion/art show by four downtown Chilliwack businesses who are raising funds for cancer charity Look Good Feel Better

From left

From left

Four local businesses are pooling their wares to bring a unique fashion show to Chilliwack in October.

Imago is a fall fashion and art show presented by The Button Box, Little Village Shoe Boutique, Lolly’s Fashion Lounge and The Arthouse on Mill.

“It’s a big endeavour for us four little shops to get together and do this,” says Lois Chadburn, owner of Lolly’s Fashion Lounge.

Imago will take place at The Arthouse on Mill, formerly Logan’s Home Hardware and now a vast gallery space, on Oct. 5.

The models will be dressed head-to-toe in fashion and accessories from the three clothing stores, and they’ll be surrounded by walls of art by various local artists including Gary Haggquist, Maxwell Newhouse and Marko Jalava.

“Our whole intention of opening a larger space was to accommodate all art forms,” says Jalava, co-owner of The Arthouse on Mill. “We thought a collaboration between art and fashion would be a good one.”

The event is months in the making. The idea to do a fashion show surrounded by art came about in the spring by Lee-Anne Jackson, co-owner of The Arthouse.

The name of the event, Imago, is Latin for ‘image’ and means the last stage an insect attains during its metamorphosis. It’s a process of growth and development.

The organizers wanted to support a charity that would complement the event name, and so they chose Look Good Feel Better (LGFB), an organization dedicated to empowering women who are dealing with the effects of cancer and its treatment.

LGFB was created from a belief that if a woman with cancer can be helped to look good, chances are she’ll feel better, her spirits will be lifted, and she’ll be empowered to face her illness with greater confidence.

“It’s about making people feel empowered in what they face in life,” says Chadburn.

“We wanted to target the positive self-esteem aspect of the show,” adds Jeanie Blecker, owner of The Button Box.

It’s going to be a fast-paced show with high energy.

There will be about 14-15 models walking the raised runway that night, all of whom have volunteered their time. They range in age from 19 to 65, they are all shapes and sizes, and they all have different personalities.

“I don’t think there has been a fashion show like this in Chilliwack, so we are bringing the big city here,” says Blecker. “It going to be a real classy, high-end show.”

You’ll be seeing the latest women’s trends for fall including chunky cable-knit sweaters, cozy scarves, felt hats, and handbags. Plus the variety of footwear will be extensive.

“Hunter rain boots, booties, flats, heels, ankle boots — they are the top selling styles across Canada,” says Nalla Steigvilas, owner of Little Village Show Boutique.

Trevor McDonald will be emceeing the event. There will be live music by Chilliwack’s Lakeisha Hewitt, who will be singing and playing the guitar, as well as sounds by Simple Machines, a multi-instrumental, one-man band from Vancouver who performs violin, guitar, bass and keyboard music on a live loop.

Appetizers and wine will be served by Vita Bella.

“You’re getting musical performances, art, fashion, plus a complimentary glass of wine. It’s going to be a very engaging evening,” says Chadburn.

Tickets are $75, and part proceeds will go towards LGFB. Everyone who buys a ticket will get a thank-you gift at the door valued at more than $100, which includes coupons for all four participating businesses. There will be more than $1,000 worth of door prizes, plus a silent auction.

“This whole thing is about embracing the people. It’s not about brands, it’s about the people,” says Chadburn.

Imago hits the runway Wednesday, Oct. 5 at 7 p.m. at The Arthouse on Mill (2-9360 Mill St.). Tickets are $75 and can be purchased at The Button Box, Little Village Shoe Boutique, Lolly’s Fashion Lounge and The Arthouse on Mill. You can also get tickets online at or at the door.

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