‘Tis the season for giving back and such was the sentiment at last night’s annual Fashion Fights Cancer holiday party. The event was open to the public, and donations were collected for the charity’s mission to provide relief for cancer patients via therapeutic fashion-and-design oriented activities.
Photographer Giovanni Zaccagnini’s ‘Message of Life’ portraits were on display throughout the space. Zaccagnini’s work featured eight FFC participants as well as Saint Laurent Paris model-of-the-moment Saskia De Brauw, whose body was used as canvas to display words and phrases that reflected the cancer struggle.
The night also marked the debut of Pamela Love’s five-piece Love Wheel
capsule collection with proceeds benefiting FFC. Love recently finished up her first foray into the program, having taught seven patients how to design their own one-of-a-kind jewelry during a month-long workshop.
ELLE.com took the opportunity to catch up with Love, who spoke about cancer, art as therapy, and what she’s taken away from her FFC endeavors.
ELLE: How did you get involved with FFC?
Pamela Love: Actually, Fashion Fights Cancer contacted me, and it was an interesting time because I have a really close friend who is dealing with cancer right now. I also lost a friend about two years ago. So, it’s been a real wake-up call for me that cancer really does affect everybody.
ELLE: Why is it important for people to get involved with organizations like FFC?
PL: I think that it’s really important to do whatever you can to help. There are obviously so may organizations that give money to cancer research, but I think it’s important to try to nourish patients and enrich their lives while they’re going through the process. Because it’s really the worst thing in the world.
ELLE: What was the creative process during your FFC workshop?
PL: We started with inspiration, so basically we pulled all kinds of books and magazines, and [I] had [the cancer patients] pull images the same way we would create an inspiration board. From there, we had them all do sketches and narrow it down to just one design that they wanted to produce. We then used wax and started to carve the piece, which would eventually be cast into metal. On the last class, we cleaned up the metal pieces, set stones, and added a chain. So they got to go through the whole process from inspiration to carving and casting.
ELLE: What did you think of the pieces once they were completed?
PL: They came out so beautiful, and they all meant something to each of them. They were all just so talented. They just really put their hearts into it. I was actually jealous of some of the pieces [Laughs]. I was like, “That looks better than mine!”
ELLE: What was the inspiration behind your Love Wheel collection?
PL: I’ve been interested in reading tarot [cards] since I was 14. I love tarot cards; I think they’re beautiful. I used to read [them] at camp. All the girls would come to my bunk and sit on my bed, and I’d read their cards. So the inspiration for that piece was the Wheel of Fortune from the tarot. It’s about life, hope, and rejuvenation.
ELLE: What has been the biggest take away from this experience?
PL: It’s inspiring for me to see how much these women were able to step out of what was going on with them and sink themselves into their design. Because sometimes when I’m going through a tough time, I’m such a baby and I’m like, “I can’t work right now, I’m so upset!” but this really encourages and inspires you to really suck it up and really dig into what you’re doing. Once you really do get into it, you are fully in it. Art has such a transforming power. It can really take over your mind once you allow it to.