Wow! It was a lot of work, but I am SO glad that I participated in Cure by Design, the gala fundraising event for The American Cancer Society last week.
It was held in the magnificent Ronald Reagan Building in DC… in the Atrium, which is just breath-taking!
I was asked to handle all of the Design and Décor of the Oculus – a circular area where the VIP Lounge was. It was a bit of a challenge, being round and also having no ceiling!
I called-in lots of favors and encountered SO much generosity from my favorite manufacturers and suppliers.
During the event, the Director of Cure By Design said she almost cried when she saw the VIP lounge as I had done it. She loved it and said in the program, ”We applaud Ginger Rodriguez at WestBay Interiors for creating the amazing decor in the VIP reception area and the place settings and thanks for your hard work and talent in making everything you touch beautiful and special!!” OK… tearing-up a bit here! SO it’s nice to have hard work appreciated!
What an event it was!
First and foremost, it was a Fashion Show and the runway models were all Cancer Survivors sporting outfits by amazing clothing designers.
It moved me in so many ways; men, women , and children who have seen hell and come back to THRIVE! They walked the runway beautiful, confident, inspired and wanting to help others.
Having a Special Needs son, Sean, who has been through so many surgeries and procedures, I felt an extra kinship and could well relate to their medical battles. I recalled the hardships he has seen, and all the amazing family, friends, doctors, and nurses that got us through that.
In a room of strangers, I felt close to so many.
One sweet highlight was the grandfather who out-bid anyone who bid on his seven year old grand daughter’s painting, “Life without Cancer.” This wonderful gentleman! I don’t know his name, but I remember meeting him, earlier, in the VIP lounge and him sincerely thanking me for creating it. I had no idea at that time that the depth of his appreciation for my support of the event – was rooted in his hopes that little girls like his grand daughter may someday see just what she painted…. a “Life without Cancer”.
And also, from now on, whenever I need to get into my “Sasha Fierce” strong and courageous mode I will always think of Janice Ferebee’s triumphant walk down the runway.
In 2011 she learned that she had a gynecological cancer, but has no intention of being subdued by it AT ALL! As she walked the runway she victoriously , and maybe defiantly, put her hand to her head, grabbed what we did not realize was a wig… and threw it off and away! There wasn’t a dry eye in the house! She had shaved her head in honor of her sister, who died of cancer in 2005. She said she “Lives life out loud.” and she certainly does! I LOVE that!
And it all comes around full-circle. The sense of being INSPIRED and UPLIFTED is something that I strive for when I design and decorate the homes, offices and shops of my clients. It was lovely to be on the receiving-end of that effect!
Thank you ALL so much for a life-changing event!
I thought I was doing it to make the event richer and more beautiful for all of you
I had no idea that you were going to make life richer and more beautiful – for me!
What a lovely event!