CHRISTMAS OFFER Subscribe to Surrey Life today CLICK HERE

Fashion for Good ~ a catwalk show, celebrity makeovers and a host of great pop-up shops

PUBLISHED: 19:39 25 September 2012 | UPDATED: 21:56 20 February 2013

This year’s team of volunteers hope to make Fashion for Good an even bigger success

This year’s team of volunteers hope to make Fashion for Good an even bigger success

One of the biggest fashion events ever to take place in Surrey, the Fashion for Good weekend promises a glittering catwalk show, celebrity makeovers and a host of great pop-up shops representing boutiques from around the county

Originally published in Surrey Life magazine September 2012

One of the biggest fashion events ever to take place in Surrey, the Fashion for Good weekend promises a glittering catwalk show, celebrity makeovers and a host of great pop-up shops representing boutiques from around the county and its all in a good cause too. Here, Debbie Ward chats to organiser KAT VITOU to find out more about this exciting event, which is also supported by Surrey Life magazine

SUBSCRIBE to Surrey Life magazine
BUY SL online
DOWNLOAD the app

Second-hand clothes, hard-working volunteers and a lot of vision helped glamorous Surrey fund-raiser Fashion For Good net an impressive 20,000 for local charities last year. Now, organiser Kat Vitou has set her sights on trying to double that total with a return of the successful catwalk fashion show plus a day of shopping and pampering to be held at Brooklands Hotel in Weybridge this November.

Kat, who lives in Cobham, came up with the idea for a major fund-raiser after reading a report by the Community Foundation on hidden poverty in Surrey around the same time as the Daily Mail ran a piece calling Cobham the Beverly Hills of the UK. Moved, she began researching local charities that helped the disadvantaged and hatching a plan to raise cash and awareness.

I didnt want to just ask people for money as such, says Kat. I wanted to come up with a concept that I could direct all the right people in the area to and that theyd love.

She admits the more affluent parts of Surrey can seem like a bubble and says she had a few of tongue-in-cheek comments from people, both in and outside the county, when she told them about her plans. People would say things like: Disadvantaged? Dont they have a swimming pool in the back garden?

Its because of that perception, of course, that the people in the area who do need help can sometimes get overlooked, and Fashion for Good now supports Oasis in Cobham, which helps disadvantaged families, the Lower Green community association in Esher and domestic violence charity Your Sanctuary in Woking.

Little black book
With a background in fashion herself, Kat felt a catwalk show was the obvious choice for last years inaugural event. Before taking time out to raise her family, she worked in online publishing for some top fashion magazines in London, so she was also able to use her knowledge and contacts to secure favours for Fashion For Good.

I needed to do something that I knew and that would work for the people round here to get them involved, she says. What also struck me in the area was that people were really fashionable and there were a lot of high-end boutiques still surviving in a recession.

Last years seemingly simple concept was to gather a band of 10 volunteers, mostly local mums, to go door-to-door collecting second-hand designer clothes over a period of eight months. These outfits were then upscaled by London stylists including Georgie Pincus who has worked for Vogue paraded in a fashion show and sold.

This year, the emphasis has changed. On Friday November 9, eight or more boutiques will be involved in the catwalk show with a model each to showcase their outfits with help from stylist Fran Lee of Production Element. An auction will also take place with prizes including use of a Barbados villa and celebrity donations like a signed Freddy Flintoff cricket bat. It will be another very glamorous evening, says Kat. Were using it as a launch pad for Saturday when weve got 36 pop-up shops from Surrey and London.

The Surrey Fashion Weekender, as it will be known, will also offer a range of other treats like blow-drys from Anita Cox salons, makeovers with Louise Rednapps beauty range, manicures and more. For just 20, visitors can have half an hour with one of a band of top personal shoppers who have worked for the likes of the royal family to help style them for that Christmas party or winter break. Up-and-coming singer Jack Jenkins will be providing entertainment and to turn the whole day into a great pamper experience Brooklands Hotel will also be laying on a high tea. Its a full-on day, with lots of lovely things to do with your girlfriends, says Kat, pointing out that while men are very welcome Mercedes-Benz World is next door if they need a diversion.

Boutique street
With between 500 and 1,000 people expected on the Saturday, Kat believes the event will also help local businesses. Already confirmed are House of Fraser (showcasing its Mary Portas range), boutiques Club in Esher and cSee in Cobham and the upcoming online range from Little Mistress.

Last year, mums on Kats volunteer team were emboldened to invite celebrities they saw at the school gates and the likes of John Terry were among the shows audience. This year, there will be more celebrity involvement with PR, celebrity and fashion expert and stylist Nick Ede hosting, helped by international model Katya E, while Louise Redknapp will be showcasing her make-up.

Kat, who also runs website Cobham Mums, is being helped by a team of ten volunteers working around childcare commitments or their own businesses. Most of them are mums who want to show their children that theyre doing something good for the community. A lot have had careers and made the choice to look after their children full-time but they still like the idea of using their brains. Weve got people in sales, marketing and PR teams. None of them get paid but they are all working really hard. Others who have lent their support include a graphic designer and web developer. The community spirit, I think, has been amazing, says Kat.

Plans for Fashion for Good are long-term, with the format to be tweaked each year to keep it fresh and exciting. Kat also intends to include more charities in future. Ive got a five-year plan with this. I want to get twenty grand or more every year and I want Fashion for Good to highlight these issues, says Kat. I want this to be the biggest thing. Im not quite taking over the world but I want to be taking over the county!

  • The Fashion for Good weekend will take place at Brooklands Hotel in Weybridge on Friday November 9 and Saturday November 10. For more information or to get involved as a volunteer, sponsor or participant, see the website,, or e-mail You can also follow the event on Facebook and Twitter. Keep reading Surrey Life magazine for further news and updates!

More from Surrey Life


We round up 10 of the most beautiful photos of Surrey shared on Instagram this week…

Read more
Yesterday, 11:11

This edition of Surrey Life features all the local ingredients to make this month special

Read more
Yesterday, 00:00

To mark the appointment of Peter Estlin, a former head boy at King Edward’s Witley, as new Lord Mayor of the City of London, Surrey Life has joined forces with the 400-pupil school to give away two tickets to the Lord Mayor’s Show on 10 November plus an overnight stay in London

Read more
Wed, 14:33

With The Great British Bake Off back on our screens the nation is falling in love with baking once again. Head pastry chef at Pennyhill Park, Sarah Frankland, tells us about what it takes to make it as a professional

Read more
Tue, 10:51

Wrap up in your favourite coat and scarf, grab your sparklers and a warming drink, and enjoy one of these fantastic firework displays taking place in Surrey for bonfire night

Read more
Tue, 10:49

Home to outstanding architecture, ambitious community projects and arts ventures that are putting these villages firmly on the map, East and West Horsley are among our county’s most desirable addresses

Read more
Tue, 10:43

Chertsey’s best-kept secret, the Great Cockcrow Railway, steamed into a half-century this year

Read more
Tue, 10:34

A taste of Korea has swept into the beautiful market town of Godalming as Bada sets out its stall with a tapas-style fusion of seafood, traditional dishes and spice

Read more
Mon, 16:06

With friendship as the central theme in Adele Parks’ new book, Zoe Richards met up with the bestselling author and her publisher, Kate Mills, to find out how these two Surrey dwellers have discovered a successful working relationship, and become firm friends too

Read more
Mon, 11:37

Great things to do in Surrey this weekend: art exhibitions, walks, concerts, theatre, places to visit and other events and ideas.

Read more
Mon, 00:00

As the twilight falls, the magic begins… There’s something for everyone at Christmas at Kew – and we’re giving you the chance to win one of five family tickets for two adults and two children to the Preview Night of Christmas at Kew on Wednesday 21 November 2018

Read more
Tuesday, October 9, 2018

Good table manners have long been a source of national pride but in this modern age of social media are our longstanding traditions being left behind? Rebecca Younger visits the stately Beaverbrook estate for a lesson in British etiquette

Read more
Tuesday, October 9, 2018

Whether you're looking for fine dining, pub grub or exotic dishes, eating out in Surrey has something for everyone. Here's our guide to the best local restaurants and pubs

Read more
Tuesday, October 9, 2018

The spookiest time of the year is fast approaching! We pick some of the best events to celebrate Halloween in Surrey

Read more

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to the following newsletters:

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Our Privacy Policy

Topics of Interest

Follow us on Twitter

Like us on Facebook

Subscribe or buy a mag today

subscription ad

Local Business Directory

Property Search