LONDON — The Seven Bar Foundation made its London debut last week, staging a charity fund-raiser in the British capital with runway shows by Agent Provocateur and Atsuko Kudo.
The charity aligns itself with lingerie firms in order to raise money for microfinance to help impoverished women set up businesses. In the past, Seven Bar has staged fund-raisers in New York, Miami, Paris and Shanghai.
“Europeans definitely do it better,” gushed Renata Mutis Black as she took to the runway at Old Billingsgate, the cavernous former fish market in east London, as the gala evening got underway. “This is the biggest thrill of my life to put this show together — it’s ladies’ night.”
Guests at the Lingerie London event were mostly industry figures, including Marigay McKee, chief merchant at Harrods, and Sebastian Manes, buying director of women’s wear at Selfridges. The Irish actor and comedian Chris O’Dowd and his wife Dawn Porter, a British TV presenter, also attended.
Atsuko Kudo, which specializes in Latex designs, staged a show of its pieces, which were paired with Nicholas Kirkwood platform shoes.
Agent Provocateur staged a theatrical show starting with dancers dressed in skimpy army uniforms and later featuring Marie Helvin, Olivia Inge and Peaches Geldof wearing lingerie and saucy nightwear from the brand.
The Agent Provocateur looks were paired with shoes from a new collaboration with Charlotte Olympia. The Candice and Bellatrix platforms were available to purchase straight off the runway on Net-a-porter.com, and afterward at Charlotte Olympia and Agent Provocateur retail stores.
Ten percent of all sales of the night were earmarked for the charity.
Pieces from the new Empowered by You lingerie collection also had a moment on the runway, with seven models showing off the designs. The collection is the first branded product to be created by the Seven Bar Foundation. It features second-skin Brazilian-cut thongs, with 20 percent from the sale of each panty to be donated to The Seven Bar Foundation.