2012 November 6
Mary Alice Stephenson Does Good Post-Sandy Through Glam4Good
Patrick McMullan (left); @MaryAliceStyle (right) View Gallery
(NEW YORK) We all know that Marc Jacobs’ West Village digs are still flooded, The Mark and The Carlyle dealt with an influx of fashion crowd-dwelling downtowners, and there are ways to shop it out while helping Sandy relief efforts in the process. But some folks in the NYC style orbit are hitting the pavement (and the Pampers aisle) a bit harder to assist—take Prabal Gurung’s trip to the SoHo God’s Love We Deliver outpost yesterday, for example. And then there’s Mary Alice Stephenson, who’s personally shuttling minivans full of essentials to one of Queens’ most ravaged nabes, Breezy Point, through her Glam4Good organization. The Daily rang up Stephenson while she was in the car, en route to distribute more goods to Sandy victims, for the scoop on how she’s helping, and how you can, too. Through Friday, donations of new or gently used threads will be accepted between 9:30 a.m. and 6 p.m. at: Mary Alice Stephenson, Attn: Glam4Good, 530 Seventh Ave., Mezzanine 1, N.Y., N.Y., 10018. P.S. Another Stephenson-endorsed way to help? Through United Way's efforts!
BY ALEXANDRA ILYASHOV
How did Glam4Good decide to help out with the Sandy aftermath?
My friend Eugene Brennan is a firefighter out in the Breezy Point/Rockaway Beach community. Initially, we started a clothing drive on Facebook, not for basics but for nicer things to help people get dressed for work—then we realized that right now, people need Pampers, tampons, flashlights, beer, water, duct tape, face masks…and socks! Socks, socks, socks. They need a lot of socks.
How did you take action?
Our Glam4Good team just filled up our cars and we told all of our friends to do the same on Twitter and Facebook. That’s the power of social media! We [as an industry] sell fashion via ads and articles; we know how to do that. So if I can get the word out and help “package” and sell [relief efforts] like I’m selling perfume, that’s a great way to get people involved.
What’s it like in the hardest hit areas?
I’m driving to Breezy Point right now with my friend Alexandra, and she was in the housing projects in this area the other day—she was one of the only people out there handing items out. This is the worst thing I’ve ever seen; it’s really, really horrific, honey. I’ve been posting pictures on Facebook of what I saw. People were shocked, because it wasn’t what people were seeing in the media. There are no closets for people to put anything in right now; we’re moving out all the contents out of their homes. It’s not like we’re rolling up in a Glam4Good relief van or anything, but we’re handing out the basics that people have sent us—hats, socks, gloves coats.
Who’s been pitching in from the fashion industry?
C. Wonder is supporting Glam4Good in a major way; they just announced their involvement yesterday. The Chris Burch team went out and bought as much as they could—hats, socks, everything—and had it at my door in 45 minutes! C.Wonder is also my first corporate sponsor helping me and Glam4Good, which is really exciting.
Amazing! Any other instrumental do-gooders who’ve been helping you out?
Alison Brod PR helped us by donating beauty products from all different brands they work with; L’Oreal donated a huge amount of shampoo, conditioner, makeup, lotion and essentials, and more is coming in this week from other brands.
What’s the story behind Glam4Good?
For the last 20 years Glam4Good has been an initiative that I've funded myself—and I’ve done it without cameras or articles following me. Fashion just doesn’t look good unless it does good. I’ve worked with brands like Calvin Klein, Estee Lauder, Coach, Covergirl, who’ve helped me on and off.
What’s next for Glam4Good’s Sandy relief efforts?
We’ve asked for “not basics” so that we can set up an area in the Breezy Point community once people are up and running again and heading back to work in a few week’s time. They’ll have the basics, like T shirts and jeans, but people lost everything. Everything! So when the time is right, we want to set up a place for people to get these beautiful clothes that are being donated, that’s not in a garbage bag. They have to go to work and school, and any money they have will be going to rebuilding their homes, not their closets.
Where is Glam4Good headed next?
Usually we go into smaller situations and grant wishes [via Make-a-Wish] and do makeovers—Sandy is extreme, but every month there’s a Glam4Good effort happening. Anyone who wants to help out can reach me on Facebook or Twitter. We always need volunteers for Glam4Good! We’ll be launching it officially as a foundation soon—we’ll let you know when, we’re in the process of working on that right now.
You’re big on giving back! What else is on your charitable docket right now?
I’m the fashion ambassador for Make-A-Wish, and I also work with Grace Centers of Hope, a woman and children’s shelter, as well as Free Arts. Glam4Good works with veterans for the Bob Woodruff foundation. Tomorrow, I’ll be getting 70 wounded soldiers and their caregivers red carpet-ready for the big event [Annual Stand Up For Heroes Event] at the Beacon Theatre on Thursday. The Limited is supplying the clothing, Nine West is doing the shoes, Dior Beauty is doing the makeup, and Kerastase is doing the hair.
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