Designer Raul Torres launches inaugural fashion fundraiser for AIDS Arms


SEEING RED | Designer Raul Torres, left, with his model, Lindsey, showcasing a red goddess gown — one of several that will be up for sale to benefit LifeWalk. (Arnold Wayne Jones/Dallas Voice)


ARNOLD WAYNE JONES  | Life+Style Editor

Screen shot 2013-08-01 at 2.05.39 PMAlmost everyone of the mother’s side of Raul Rulli Torres’ family pursued a career in the medical field — doctors, nurses, etc. But it was not in the cards for Torres.

“I can’t handle the sight of blood,” he says.

But as it turns out, Torres is still doing his part for those infected with HIV. And he gets to use his profession to do it.

Torres has organized the first DFashionWeek summer fashion show, a fundraiser for AIDS Arms. Funds raised will go toward the Guys & Dolls team for LifeWalk.

“I have been a member of the Guys & Dolls team since I moved down here two years ago from Arkansas,” Torres says, “but I wasn’t very active. So this year I have tried to be more involved.”

Being in fashion, Torres decided to reach out to others in the community to see if there was an interest in doing a charity show. He posted a notice on a networking site, and before long, people began signing up.

“I started getting models and designers, and we started posting that on Facebook and that attracted more models, photographers and hairstylists,” he says.

The idea was for designers to come up with fashions that they would donate after walking down the runway, and 100 percent of proceeds would go to the LifeWalk team. (Guys & Dolls is one of the most successful teams, having raised more than $600,000 since its founding more than 15 years ago.)

Torres now has a slate of about a half-dozen designers (including Karolina Karo, Ju’els Collection, King Onye and more), each of whom will design, in addition to other fashions, a red garment.

“I just thought about the red ribbon representing HIV and AIDS and that color popped into my mind,” he says.

In addition to women’s fashions, there will be men’s underwear from Gasoline (modeled, of course, by hot men) — and even a paper dress Torres made to promote the event. He promises one of  the models will wear it on the runway, too — anything to get people to pay attention to a cause that’s close to his heart.

This article appeared in the Dallas Voice print edition August 2, 2013.