WALLINGFORD — A night of fashion raised money for charity while also showcasing the work of local designers Tuesday at Le Jardin Café.
The show featured two local shops— Achiq Designs and Zaccariello’s Tailor and Formal Wear.
The café, which is located in the space as Achiq Designs, gave the audience a preview of the collection offered in the other side of the building.
The purpose of the show was not only to showcase the latest fashions but also to raise money for the Ronald McDonald House of Connecticut.
At the show, guests snacked on various hors d’ouvres while models made their way down the runway.
The models consisted of adults of all ages.
Arianna Kaplan, one of the models in the show, wore a mock neckline sweater with tiered lace detailing on the sleeves, paper bag pants, and BCBG booties. She paired the outfit with silver hoop earrings and Achiq Designs’ “Michelle” necklace.Behind the scenes with Fabi
Fabiola Giguere, who owns Achiq Designs, was thrilled with the show’s turnout. Giguere and her family also own Le Jardin Café.
“We just moved from Cheshire, as that is where we had our jewelry store,” Giguere said. “The space was just so big, so we were thinking we should do a boutique as well with shirts for guys, dresses, and a small spot for kids too.”
Dresses for formal occasions such as holidays, weddings, gatherings and more are available. Plus-sized clothing may be offered in the future, according to Giguere.
Jewelry in the store is handmade by skilled Peruvian artisans featuring gemstones. Giguere is the designer.
According to the website, some of Giguere’s favorite jewelry pieces include a Fiori bracelet, sailor necklace and arete earrings.
Many of Giguere’s designs were featured in the show.
Ilena Andrich, one of the models, wore a sleeveless high-waist split dress in royal blue with floral detailing. She also wore drop-leaf earrings and a bracelet. Andrich works at Achiq.
Jill Dechello, a volunteer, worked closely with Giguere on the show. The fashion show also previewed the Magical Elf House that Dechello organizes. The house will be held on Dec. 16 and 17 in North Haven.
Other models in the show included Vicky Shimmield, who wore a drape neck silky maxi dress in plum. The dress has adjustable spaghetti straps and a hidden back closure with a side slit. Her outfit was paired with a single pearl necklace in 14K and gold hoops.
Shimmield’s sister Isabel also participated in the show, wearing a boatneck sweater dress in classic black paired with BCBG booties. Her jewelry included a Venice necklace and Seville earrings in Crisocolla.
Michaila Stratton, one of the other models, wore a midi sweater dress in chocolate featuring a turtleneck and ribbed design. The outfit was paired with a fun accessory for fall, a fedora hat with belt trim. Her jewelry with the outfit included an Equis Cuff bracelet, mermaid earrings, and a custom cubic zirconia ring.
Rafaela Mangilo, a North Haven resident, enjoyed watching the show with her daughter and mother.
“I really liked the gold dress with the draped one-sided sleeve. I just loved it,” Mangilo said.
Mangilo said that her mother, who lives in Wallingford, is good friends with Fabiola Giguere.
“I really believe in the cause, supporting the Ronald McDonald House, what they do for the children, and having a safe place where you can make meals and recover when you’re healing from surgery,” Mangilo said.About the Ronald McDonald House
The first Ronald McDonald House opened in Philadelphia in 1974, after recognizing the need for parents to stay close to their children who were hospitalized.
The role of the organization was to create a charity that would support facilitating family-centered care. The houses are typically located near top children’s hospitals to allow parents who are far from home to stay close to their hospitalized child while benefiting from the comforts of home without incurring hotel and food expenses.
The closest Ronald McDonald house in Connecticut is located on Howard Avenue in New Haven. The facility was opened in 1985 and houses 18 guest rooms and two respite rooms.
To learn more about the Ronald McDonald House, you can visit their website at www.rmhc-ctma.org.