Doffing designer duds for charity

If you want to see beautiful girls in gorgeous clothes get nearly naked (who doesn't?), then go to Celebrities tonight for the Be Bare: Vancouver's Naughtiest Fashion Auction benefiting Rose Charities.

For Canadian supermodel Noot Seear, Rose Charities is a family affair. Her uncle, William Grut, started the organization in 1999 after visiting Cambodia, where he performed surgeries for cleft palate, sight restoration, land-mine injuries, and acid burns. Rose Charities has since grown into an international-relief organization that operates on a nonprofit, nonpolitical, secular basis. The group keeps administration next to nil, to ensure that every penny gets used to its fullest potential wherever it is needed most. Now Seear's mother, Josephine de Freitas, and sister, Mimi Seear, are both integral parts of Rose Charities.

“It's such a small kind of homegrown charity that when people donate money, they can call us and we can tell them exactly where their money went,” Mimi says when she sits down with her sister in an interview with the Georgia Straight. De Freitas got involved after the December 2004 tsunami, and the two organized fundraising drives that helped send doctors and nurses to Sri Lanka. Besides emergency pediatric care for child survivors of the tsunami, the charity also provided counselling and psychological support, educational assistance, and recreational programs (such as basketball and cultural events), and the construction of the Children's Memorial Community Centre in Kalmunai, Sri Lanka.

Noot, who is the chair of the board for Rose Charities New York, is looking forward to Be Bare. “Once you realize that you can help and you can make a difference, it becomes addictive. So when my mom came up with this idea I couldn't say no. I was excited to do something [for Rose Charities] again.” Her best girlfriend, supermodel Erin Wasson, a face of Maybelline, and Natalie Talson, a finalist on Canada's Next Top Model, will join Noot Seear along with 15 of Vancouver's hottest models. They will wear clothing from local designers and shops such as Richard Kidd, PD's Hot Shop, Twice Shy, Leone, Aritzia, and Endeavor Snowboards. The women will work the catwalk, giving the audience a good look at the wares before each piece is auctioned off. Then the models will strip down layer by layer in a classy, burlesque way as the clothing sells until they are left standing in their designer skivvies. The bidding will start small, but remember the point is to raise money, so bare your bank book and bid high.

Seear, 22, has been modelling since the age of 13, when she was discovered by Selena Wallace of W Model Management at a Seattle model search and soon took the fashion world by storm. She is branching out into an acting career as well as working on a clothing line called Lowluv with Wasson. She describes the Lowluv look as “men's clothes for women, like skinny jeans and vests, no frills”. Expect to see items in stores in December.

For more info on Rose Charities go to For tickets (minimum $15 donation) to Be Bare, visit Doors are at 9 p.m.; the show is at 10 p.m.