Fashion Cares was conceived in the UK in 1986 and smartly noted, and with permission from the originator, picked up and brought to Toronto in 1987, by local garmentos Syd Beder, then sales agent of the avant garde, and Rick Mugford, at the time retail store manager of the appropriately named shop “WOW”! Fashion show producer Phillip Ing, who for all but one year poured his heart and soul into the event, as the the director, and the people at MAC cosmetics, who teamed with the show from the early years, together, were instrumental in keeping the momentum of the event over its many, many years. The event was held to raise awareness of HIV and AIDS, as well as raise funds for the AIDS Committee of Toronto (ACT). The idea was to have a more than just regular runway fashion show, and to sell the above pictured t-shirt and make a spectacular evening of it all. It worked, so well, that it went on to have a 25 year run during which it would ,in various years, be held in many different venues, include fine dining, auctions, sales events and celebrities galore in conjunction with the annually re-themed fashion show. From the beginning everyone in the industry was invited to participate; designers designed things exceptional to their norm, hair and makeup people outdid themselves, and the models and the photographers and just about anyone else who could do something, did. Hundreds helped one the 25 year run to make it a local legend. The concept celebrated its 25th and final year in 2012; 25 successful evenings of “celebration and celebrity” that succeeded in helping to more than create an awareness of the disease and spectacularly raise approximately 12 million dollars for ACT. Bravo to all involved and a “Special Thanks” to Phillip…to whom without, it would have never been the same.