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Fashionable Girl's Guide: Support our pets, look good in the process

By BY ALLISON MAREK
July 23, 2014 at 2:23 a.m.

This chevron look is appealing, even in the summer.

I love it when someone says, "I swear, I never do this," and then proceeds to climb up on their soapbox with an ease and grace that only comes with a thing practiced once or twice. I am not one of those people. If I have something to say, I generally do so.

Now, anyone who knows me knows that I am an animal person and a huge advocate for adopting shelter animals.

In 2007, I adopted Trixie-Belle, the love of my life, and because of her, I am forever changed. It was then that I really became aware of the staggering number of homeless and sheltered animals. Just in Victoria alone, the numbers will boggle you. On top of the number of homeless pets, the number of people who refuse to neuter their animals is enough to make you sick.

There is no good reason to breed your pets these days. One trip to Adopt-A-Pet, Dorothy H. O'Connor Pet Adoption Center or the Victoria City-County Animal Shelter will prove that there are more than enough sweet, loving, smart, wonderful dogs and cats just waiting to be adopted. Refusing to take such a simple step to stop shelter overpopulation blows my mind.

I have one dog and two cats of my own - all rescues, all neutered. I also, as of late, seem to have adopted three more stray cats who hang around my house for the free food and shade of my garage.

I have no problem with this. I will feed and shelter as many strays as I can, but with one rule: They must be neutered. Because two of them are very wild and won't let me near them, I knew I needed help.

That was when I came across a wonderful organization called "Victoria Trap, Neuter, Return." For an unbelievably low price, they will trap feral cats, have them neutered and return them to you. Seriously, people, all you have to do is make a phone call. Just $15 to prevent hundreds of homeless kittens is more than worth money.

So, why am I talking about this, and what does it have to do with fashion? Well, the organization is having its second annual Spay-ghetti Dinner on Monday night at The Sendera. What an easy way to support a hard-working organization. You've got to eat - might as well do so to the benefit of others.

Of course, I needed something special for such an event. But what does one wear to a dinner supporting the neutering of animals and serving spaghetti? Nothing white.

I stopped into my new favorite boutique, The Market of Victoria on Airline Road, which I had heard was closing. Turns out, it just has a new owner, Debbie Doll. I had only been in a few times looking for gifts, so I hadn't paid close attention to the clothes.

Seriously adorable stuff. Especially if you like the Bohemian look. Everything from beautiful, lacy, billowy summery dresses to casual, fluttering tops to modern yet completely unique looks. Gorgeous scarves and lots of jewelry options make The Market a one-stop shopping experience.

Taking into consideration my dinner destination, I found these two options especially appealing. Apparently, I had a thing for chevron that day. Both were comfy, casual and flattering, but I ended up going with the colorful one. I really appreciated the waist-accentuating tie, which looks good on every woman, and the fact that the multiple colors would mask the inevitable spaghetti stains.

Another fashion success. One event supporting two local organizations. A wonderful dinner raising money for a truly honorable cause and a fabulous dress embracing a local boutique. Everybody wins.

Allison Marek is an attorney by day, shopping and sale fanatic by night. You can reach her at allison.marek@yahoo.com or at fashionablegirlsguide.com.

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