Harpenden charity shop fashionista to host St Albans Fashion Week fun

Caroline Jones, St Albans Fashion Week

Caroline Jones, St Albans Fashion Week - Credit: Archant

The Harpenden fundraiser behind a charity shop couture campaign will be strutting her stuff as part of this year’s St Albans Fashion Week.

Through her campaign Knickers Model’s Own, Caroline Jones set herself the challenge of wearing a pre-loved outfit sourced only from Cancer Research UK charity shops every day for a whole year, with the aim of raising £36,500 for the charity in memory of her mother Mary Benson, who passed away last October.

She posts her outfits daily on social media and has gained an international following, appearing on Loose Women earlier in the year and being filmed by Alex James as part of a top secret documentary.

Now Caroline’s bringing her quirky styles to the Cathedral Catwalk Show taking place on October 29 and 30.

SAFW director Ellena Ophira explained: “Whilst the memory of Caroline’s mother lies at the heart of her campaign, she also touched the lives of so many women who were looking for a style icon they could connect with. Women of all ages are drawn to Caroline’s quirky and eclectic sense of style and find great joy and inspiration from her colourful creations.

“Every year during SAFW we raise money for local charities. SAFW is all about the community, so as we bring large groups of people together we aim to raise money for worthy causes on our doorstep.

“As soon as I heard about Caroline, I knew this was the charity for us this year. I thought what she was doing was not only a wonderful tribute to her mother, with whom she shared a passion for fashion and style, but that she was putting herself out there and showing women how they can be creative and have fun with fashion. Caroline’s story is one that is close to my heart and I am inspired by her bravery and creativity. Philanthropy and fashion, it’s the perfect fit!”

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Caroline said: “I am very excited to be involved with SAFW and to send pre-loved fashion down the catwalk is a real thrill for me. I am currently busy pulling together my collection and look forward to showing how on-trend and fashion forward pre-loved can look. I am particularly thrilled that SAFW has chosen my Knickers Model’s Own campaign as their sole charity, helping to raise vital funds for Cancer Research UK.”

Ellena added: “We really wanted to put Caroline on the catwalk. Nothing showcases Caroline and her cause more than putting her stylish CRUK creations centre stage and letting people marvel at the possibilities that can come out from charity shops on your doorstep. We have some heavy weight retailers taking part, but Caroline isn’t phased, in fact she is embracing the opportunity and promises to put on a real show, we just can’t wait!’

Not only will Caroline be showing her pre-loved CRUK collections on the Cathedral Catwalk, but she will also be hosting a more intimate styling masterclass on October 26 at Brasserie Blanc in Verulam Road, where she will talk more constructively about styling and putting together a great look.

Tickets cost £20 and include a two course lunch with a glass of sparkling wine. Tickets must be purchased in advance and all profits will go to Caroline’s campaign.

On a slightly larger scale of fundraising Caroline will be the guest of honour at a Zumba Latin Party held at SAFW entertainment sponsor, Club Batchwood.

“Looking great is as much about feeling great and this year we really wanted to do something that embraced this fact,” said assistant director Vicky Taylor.

“We’ve had lots of people ask us to host something about health and fitness, so we thought a fun exercise class was the way to go. We wanted to create that party feeling, so that everyone has a great time and we can raise lots of money for Caroline. Club Batchwood have very kindly donated the premises for free and so all the proceeds will go to Caroline’s campaign.”

Tickets are just £6 for an hour-long class taken by catwalk model and Zumba teacher Jon-Bradley Maloney on October 27 from 7-8pm. Tickets can be purchased in advance from the SAFW website and on the door on the day.

For all information and to purchase any tickets for SAFW head to the website.