Life Is Sometimes A Dream

Life is sometimes a dream.

This year I’ve spent on DIFFA Style Council has been simply amazing. There really aren’t any other words. I’m so thankful for the wonderful people I’ve met and the new volunteer opportunities I’ve been introduced to. This experience has had a tremendous impact on me.

The goal of Style Council is to fundraise and spread awareness on behalf of AIDS service organizations in North Texas. An average of 4200 people in Texas are diagnosed with HIV every year and 60% of new HIV diagnoses in Dallas County are people under the age of 35. The fight against HIV/AIDS is far from over!

The Style Council fundraising year ends with the House of DIFFA event and there aren’t enough words to describe the evening. Every year there is a different theme and this year was Arabesque. Think Arabian Nights meets New York Fashion Week and that pretty much describes it.

The evening started with a camel, greeting the attendees as they entered the Omni Dallas. As you walked into the ballroom, there were belly dancers and the room was dark with pops of bright colors everywhere. The night was filled with intricate dance productions and elaborate, detailed costumes. It felt like I was in a movie!

Natasha Bedingfield was the surprise guest performer and brought the house down and after she performed, she stayed on stage encouraging people to donate.

We heard from Eric Leonardos, a celebrity hairstylist from Texas who is living with HIV. You may remember him as the guy who revealed his positive HIV status on “Finding Prince Charming” (aka The Gay Bachelor) and then won. He shared his story of being diagnosed with HIV and how far we’ve come in the fight. While there’s still no cure, it’s no longer a death sentence and he’s proof that HIV doesn’t have to stop you from living a happy life.

And then there was the highlight of House of DIFFA … the fashion show! Every year there is a fantastic fashion show. The Style Council members walk the runway (which is both awesome and terrifying) and I wore an amazing dress, made by Nardos Imam, a super-talented Dallas-based fashion designer. Last year, I needed a dress for a DIFFA event and my friend, Amy Vanderoef, introduced me to Nardos. She made a custom couture dress for me in 6 days and it was incredible, so she was the obvious choice to design my dress for House of DIFFA. I was really inspired by the Elie Saab spring collection for the Arabesque theme and Nardos and I worked together to design the gown. It was exactly as I envisioned it. Perfection!

It was an unforgettable night and the best part was the money raised for DIFFA. Style Council alone, raised $300k, which is an incredible amount of money for 12 people to raise. The pictures here don’t even begin to describe the night. Check out the DIFFA Facebook page to see it all! An amazing year for an amazing cause and I was blessed to be a part of it!



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