Celebrating Asian American Talent for a Cause at ATG’s 8th Annual Fashion for a Passion

Photo | Dr. Jarvis Jacobs
Photo | Dr. Jarvis Jacobs

Nov. 7, 2016 (DALLAS) – Fashion for a Passion presented by Audi Dallas gave guests from all over the Dallas community a fresh take on Asian American fashion, music and art at its 8th annual event on Oct. 29 at new venue sixty five hundred. Through sponsorships, ticket sales, live and silent auctions, a raffle and additional donations, more than 350 glamorous guests gathered together to raise more than $26,000 net, all of which benefit the mission of Against The Grain Productions, a Dallas-based non-profit, with its supported orphanages and underprivileged children in Asia, scholarship fund and community outreach programs for 2017.

14956444_10154705158643781_6353134815397268853_n“As a small 100% volunteer-run organization, we are so proud of what our board, ambassadors, advisors, volunteers, sponsors and Asian American artists accomplish together as as a team year after year to bring a top-notch event to the Dallas community,” said Against The Grain President and Co-Founder Tammy Nguyen Lee. “This year’s theme was about being a tribe – and we proved that we could come together with our passion and commitment to a cause.”


As one of Dallas’ hottest fashion tickets and fall cha14993322_10154705154518781_6655516683148350762_nrity events, the evening showcases and celebrates emerging Asian American artists and musical performers. More significantly, it has become a place to discover talent, becoming a launch pad for then up-and-coming designers such as Khanh Nguyen of Nha Khanh and Jerry Matthews of Nine Muses, who have all gone on to notable fashion careers.

The event featured live entertainment, a silent auction, art exhibit, fashion show with live auction, tasty bites by Chino Chinatown, cocktails courtesy of Ben E Keith and concluded with an extended wrap-party with music by DJ Super T for guests, artists and volunteers to mix and mingle until midnight.15027393_10154705165873781_1498487721983371477_n14947562_10154705144078781_1005757410989820129_n Young Asian American entertainers stole the stage this year as they helped kick off the show. Seven year-old Ayden Nguyen delighted audiences with his hip hop moves, while pre-teens The Sun and Stars sang cover favorites. Kollaboration Dallas Singers Jessica Kim and Mijee Park also dazzled the audience with their musical stylings. Yut And The Hot Four returned again to accompany stunning models (provided by Page Parkes, Clutts Agency and Dragonfly Agency and with hair and make-up styled beautifully by Dianne Gomez and her team from Essensuals London) as they walked down the runway created by Magic Moments in looks from Nine Muses, recent UNT graduate Victoria Lin, eco-friendly-design collaborators Cykochik x Nikki Li, Danh Ta and Houston-based Danny Nguyen Couture.

14955860_10154705166658781_100672767546279128_nArtists whose works were both on display and for auction included Sarah Hickey, Jin-Ya Huang, Susan Yu Petty, Tram Vo and ATG Artistic Scholarship finalists Xian Boles, Michelle Dominado and Michelle Kim.

CEO of The Smithee Group Ben Smithee and former Miss Asia Houston Dr. Diana Tran-Yu, who were both past Groundbreakers Speak panelists, were this year’s emcees.

Photography was generously provided by:

Praise for Fashion for a Passion:

“It always means so much to me to be a presenting designer. This charity and event is something that I am very passionate about, and everyone involved feels like family. This year especially was so fun, and I can’t wait until next year.” – Jerry Matthews, Designer and Creative Director of Nine Muses

“This is my first year being a part of Fashion for a Passion. As a recent graduate, I was so excited to participate in this opportunity that ATG has created for emerging Asian American Artists… As the only non-established designer from the group, I feel motivated to inspire other artists to chase their dreams and to never give up… I hope one day my unique voice and story can be heard by many people. I want to let other artists understand the importance of trusting themselves and going against the grain. Having the courage to take action and break through any barriers in pursuit of your passion.” – Victoria Lin, Designer

“It was an honor to be a Presenting Designer for the third time at FFAP! It was more special this year being able to present a 100% eco-friendly and ethical vegan collection of handbags and apparel in collaboration designer Nikki Li. We wanted to show that fashion can be fabulous without harming people, animals, or our planet!” – Nikki Duong Koenig, Founder of Cykochik

“Being a featured designer at FFAP for a second time was just as exciting and meaningful to me. ATG has provided me with a way to challenge myself as a designer while also being able to give back to a wonderful cause. ATG has also helped me find acceptance within the Asian community. I never had the chance to get in touch with my Asian roots as a kid, and it was always such an interesting and mysterious part of my background. Finally collaborating with fellow vegan, Nikki [Duong Koenig] of Cykochik, is one of the biggest milestones for my carries, and I feel as I am ready to begin planning the launch of my own vegan, ethnical line.” – Nikki Li, Designer

“It’s always an exciting and humbling experience to represent ATG and their great cause. Having the opportunity to connect with my community through their platform gives me a voice to showcase my womenswear brand. Thank you to Tammy, her organization, and to everyone who came out showing support.” – Danh Ta, Designer
“I wanted to send my sincere gratitude for having Ayden. The event was amazing and very well run and organized, you have a fantastic team!” – Cindy Nguyen, Mother of performer Ayden Nguyen
“Fashion for a Passion is an event that has become one the biggest highlights of my year! Being an adopted Asian American, the efforts Tammy and her team are taking with ATG are amazing and hit close to home. FFAP is such an important part of supporting their efforts and the event is one of the most fun experiences of the year! The fashion is amazing, the entertainment is top-notch, and the cause is essential. Can’t wait for 2017.” – Ben Smithee, Emcee and CEO of The Smithee Group
“FFAP is an event that we look forward to each year. The team from ATG has so much passion and love that shines through each and every person involved with FFAP. We look at fashions from London Fashion Week to pull inspiration for the hair and makeup looks each year to pull the looks together for each designer. We look forward to many more years of giving to this beautiful cause!”  – Dianne Becerra, Lead Hair Stylist and PR Manager at Essensuals London 
“Our makeup team looks forward to working this event every year. We love giving our time to a great cause. We took a look at what was happening on the runways this year during fashion week and drew inspiration from Pat McGrath to create a look that would be timeless and translate well to each designers collection. We look forward to what’s to come for FFAP and ATG.” – Lorann Shindler, Lead Makeup artist at Essensuals London
“AREAA-DFW, as a Community Partner, is proud to be a part of ATG and believes in the charity work that Fashion for a Passion brings. This is always one of the highlight fall events in the community. ENGVEST | DFW iRealty believes it is an honor and privilege to sponsor ATG and its charity mission. Fashion for a Passion is just one of many events that brings the community together to raise awareness about orphanages overseas. We are proud #beCAUSE we believe in the difference that ATG makes.” – Daniel Eng, President of ENGVEST | DFW iRealty and AREAA-DFW
“The fashion show was fantastic and fun to watch! It’s a reminder that there are talented people out there who need an opportunity for their talent to shine. My husband and I both came from refugee families. We’ve been there, and we’ve had our struggles, so when we donate to ATG, it moves us to know that we are able to give back to the less fortunate and hopefully to be able to make their lives easier.” – Laina Luyen Vo, Owner of Hot n Juicy
“We are a proud year-round sponsor for ATG. This is a wonderful group of people that do so much good for the community.” – Anh Vo, Owner of Cindi’s NY Deli
“I think supporting Tammy’s efforts to help young aspiring Asian Americans as well as to take care of orphans across the world is such a worthy cause and has prompted me to stay involved with her life-changing and world-changing charitable work.” – Dr. Sam Lam, Facial Plastic and Hair Transplant Surgeon of Lam Facial Plastics | Ova Skin Care
“What a great organization! We go to FFAP and other ATG events to be a part of something that is particularly good. What other organization can you think of that puts 100% of all funds collected to where it is needed most? We love what they do for orphanages, underprivileged children in Asia, scholarships and community outreach programs. Other organizations may say they try, but ATG puts donated money right to the need! For many years now, we have felt privileged to be able to be a part of such a wonderful organization by both attending their events and donating money for scholarships. We encourage all to help those in need by doing the same.” Pat & Bruce McRae, scholarship donors

About ATG Against The Grain Productions, Inc.
ATG Against The Grain Productions, a Dallas-based 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, promotes Asian American cultural awareness through compelling media projects and raises funds for international orphanages and underprivileged children. In addition to hosting outreach events, it also awards annual scholarships to exemplary Asian American student artists and leaders. ATG produced the feature documentary, Operation Babylift: The Lost Children of Vietnam, which has screened at more than a dozen film festivals nationwide and received the Audience Choice Award for Best Feature Film at the Vietnamese International Film Festival and the Documentary Audience Choice Award from the Philadelphia Asian American Film Festival. ATG will begin production on its second documentary, Light of Day, uncovering untold stories of domestic violence in the Asian community in 2017. For more information, visit www.AgainstTheGrainProductions.com or www.TheBabylift.com.

#ATGProds   #FFAP2016   #beCAUSE


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A Jarvis Jacobs Photo
A Jarvis Jacobs Photo




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