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Annual thrift shop fashion show to celebrate ‘Sixty Years of Style’

By Staff | Feb 4, 2020

Noah’s Ark will host one of the island’s long-standing traditions next week for the community.

The thrift store at St. Michael & All Angels Episcopal Church on Sanibel will hold its annual fashion show extravaganza, titled “Sixty Years of Style” this year, on Feb. 10 at 1 p.m. at the church. Free for the public, it will feature looks from the store, as well as door prizes and a special check presentation.

The doors will open at 12:30 p.m., with punch and cookies provided after the show.

“It’s sort of a present to our customers,” Liz Coffey, event co-chair with Robin Fidler, said about the annual event. “It’s just a fun thing to do for our customers.”

She explained that the church’s original thrift store was not called Noah’s Ark until about 1968. Only open for a couple of hours per week, it was located out of what is now the office for the church. About 1990, the church constructed the building that the thrift shop presently operates from on the property.

CORKY BOYD From left, St. Michael’s parishioners Julie Boyd and event co-chairs Robin Fidler and Liz Coffey choose clothing to model at the Noah’s Ark Fashion Show, “Sixty Years of Style,” on Feb. 10.

To commemorate the store’s 60 years of selling donated clothes, household items, small appliances, furniture and sports equipment, this year’s fashion show will feature special vintage outfits representing each of the last six decades of the shop’s operation – 1960s, 1970s, 1980s, 1990s 2000s and 2010s.

“We’re going to have a couple of things for each decade to start off the show,” Coffey said, explaining that there will be psychedelic outfits for the ’60s, clothing that could have come straight from out of movies like “Pretty Woman” for the 1990s and more. “We tried to find things that fit in with the times.”

Up-to-date clothing will also be featured, like active wear, lifestyle fashions and evening outfits.

“There will be casual clothes, there will be some lovely cocktail dresses,” she said, noting that there will be women’s and men’s. “We let our models select what they’re going to wear. They shop the store.”

“They can choose jewelry, scarves, hats, purses,” Coffey added.

All volunteers at Noah’s Ark, most of the 23 models will wear two outfits.

With music provided by pianist Dr. Richard Mattern, Coffey will serve as the moderator.

“I will mention the size of each garment and how much it costs,” she said.

The items will be available for purchase after the event.

“In addition to that, there will be some other special items that we’ve brought over from the shop that we think are really nice and add to what’s for sale,” Coffey said.

About a dozen door prizes will also be given away at the end of the show.

“They are all brand-new items that were donated to Noah’s Ark,” she said.

Attendees will have the opportunity to buy $25 gift cards to the store at a discounted $20.

Coffey noted that they cannot be used the day of the event though.

The church is using proceeds from last year’s show to award grants to 23 local, national and international organizations. F.I.S.H. of Sanibel-Captiva will be presented its check at the event.

Attendees are encouraged to wear something that they have purchased from the store.

“We always invite our guests to wear an outfit that they bought at Noah’s Ark,” Coffey said.

Resident and visitors are welcome to come out and enjoy the show.

“It’s just a nice way to spend a couple of hours having fun,” she said.

Parking is limited, so carpooling is recommended.

For more information, call 239-472-2173.

Located behind the church, Noah’s Ark is at 2304 Periwinkle Way.

Open Monday through Friday and the first Saturday of each month from 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. and the second Tuesday of each month from 5 to 7 p.m., the shop accepts donations of clothing, shoes, accessories, jewelry, household items, dishes, pots and pans, bath and bed linens, and children’s toys and clothing. Gently used furniture is also accepted, but must it be approved before being dropped off.