by Justin Fenner at STYLEITE
People around the world have been awestruck by the destruction caused by earthquake and tsunami that hit Japan last week, and since then there’s been an outpouring of support from charities and relief organizations all over the world. The fashion community is no different, and its members have taken to a variety of tactics to raise support, money and simple awareness about the overwhelming obstacles Japan now faces. Herein, a few examples of how people in fashion have been trying to help — and how you can help, too. And if there’s anyone we missed, please let us know!
Lady Gaga and Nicola Formichetti
Yesterday, Lady Gaga started selling a simple rubber bracelet that says “We pray for Japan” in English and Japanese. It’s $5, and all proceeds are donated to tsunami relief efforts. Gaga Daily reported today that $250,000 has been raised already. You can get yours here, and you can make an additional donation when you buy the bracelet. Gaga’s friend and stylist Nicola Formichetti has been tweeting about the bracelets to his 43,000 followers, which has no doubt helped sales.
Prabal Gurung and Anna Dello Russo
Designer Prabal Gurung tweeted a link to the International Red Cross‘s disaster relief page, asking his followers to make donations to the Japan relief effort there. Stylist Anna Dello Russo has been a big proponent of the Save Japan Project, a Twitter campaign organized to keep the world up to date on the status of the Japanese people.
We reported yesterday that Uniqlo‘s CEO Tadashi Yanai has donated almost $26 million to the relief effort. If you don’t have that kind of money, you can still donate clothing and shoes at North American Uniqlo stores, but we hear the one in New York’s SoHo neighborhood is not quite ready yet.
Designers on Twitter
Designers have been expressing lots of support and concern for the people of Japan, mostly via Twitter. We’ve seen missives from Kenneth Cole, Vera Wang and Michael Kors, just to name a few. But Diane von Furstenberg posed the question “How can we help?” and it got us thinking that it doesn’t really matter what you do here. If you can do something to help, however small or large that something might be, you probably should.
Bergdorf Goodman is using the power of social media to guide its Facebook followers to a variety of donation and support options. From the Earthquake Relief tab on their profile page, you can visit Charity Navigator to figure out what kinds of contributions go where, donate money through your iTunes account, find out how to text a donation to the Japanese Red Cross or even buy a shelter kit for people who have lost their homes.