With all the mess that's going on politically these days, fashion can seem kind of trivial. When people are being denied certain liberties, when folks feel like their voices aren't being heard or respected or when those who decide the law blatantly make some of us feel like we're invisible, does it really matter that a shirt collar was so last season or a pant hem width very three years ago? Yes and no. It does matter since you're spending power affects the livelihoods of countless garment producing employees. Then it sort of doesn't matter at times since there are bigger issues to connect with like just dressing to suit your needs, even if Esquire says 'nay'. It can sometimes seem backstage to the very ideas of fighting to uphold the very laws that unify and uplift a society.
Clockwise from top left: Actor Lee Tergesen in Joseph Abboud, Supermodel Alex Lundqvist in Stephen F, NY Post's Richard Johnson in Paper Denim & Cloth, Richard Johnson and Luis Fernandez, Yankees Pitcher CC Sabathia in John Varvatos and Actor/Comedian Tommy Davidson in Tongue In Cheek
For some time now, I've said that with such little time for ourselves nowadays that making things more two-fold is the way to influence things to get done. So when I got the opportunity to attend the inaugural Blue Jacket Fashion Show last week I first thought "another fashion show during fashion week?... groundbreaking!" However, when I learned that that whole event was to draw awareness to prostate cancer, then the redemption hit me. Fashion, like sports, movies & music, can serve to help us escape the craziness of heavier issues like politics, healthcare and social changes, but it can also serve to bridge the gap to those issues as well. By enlisting those centered in the objects of our escapisms we get to see a modern way to bridge the gap by getting everyone involved by any means necessary.
Clockwise from top left: Actor/Comedian Mario Cantone, Host Carson Kressley in Nicole Miller, Philanthropist Omar Sharif Jr., Omar Sharif Jr. with designer Gustavo Moscoso, Bill Nye The Science Guy' and designer Nick Graham, Bill Nye
This is what happened Wednesday Night at Pier 59 in New York City. The blue carpet was rolled out for a cool group of athletes, musicians, media & entertainment personalities, actors and designers with the emphasis on prostate cancer and benefiting the Prostate Cancer Foundation (PCF) founded in 1993 by financier Mark Milken. Every 3.3 minutes a man is diagnosed with prostate cancer and it has become the deadliest non-skin cancer among American men so early detection is key. The PCF focuses on research and development into prevention, treatment and care to make sure that prostate cancer doesn't become an epidemic. In addition to the awareness raised, Johnson & Johnson has also developed a free photo-sharing app for smart phones (@DonateAPhoto) that will donate $1 for every photo shared and pay for one hour of research for every 30 photos that are shared. Doing your part by taking a selfie, group photo, nature photo, etc. is how you can show your strength, concern, humanitarianism and solidarity to help eradicate this cancer globally.
Clockwise from top left: Musician Ian Mellencamp in Maggie Norris Couture, Ian Mellencamp with designers Maggie Norris and Nicole Miller, NY Giants Wide Receiver Victor Cruz in John Varvatos, Alessandro Mele in Thom Browne, CNN Anchor Don Lemon in Proper Cloth, Actor Jack Griffo
Further helping the fight, each jacket on all these handsome gentlemen were one of kind creations by the designers and then auctioned off after the fashion show during a dinner with all of the proceeds going towards the PCF. This was a great two-fold evening where like all the marches and peaceful protests that have been going on lately, it shows how we are stronger as a nation when we work together to ensure that everyone has a chance to live their best life.
Left to right: Stylist Ty Hunter in Dolce and Gabbana, two runway looks from Rag & Bone, legendary R & B Singer Melba Moore entertains the crowd
For more information about The Prostate Cancer Foundation and how it serves men globally with the almost $700 million it has already raised since its inception, go to www.PCF.org. Stay informed and fashionable gents.