By Rebekah Skochinski

Samantha Romeo, model with Lux BoutiqueSamantha Romeo, model with Lux Boutique

This June, an exclusive designer shoe event makes its return to the city with an extra bit of kick, courtesy of reality-television star Jody Claman of Real Housewives of Vancouver. Claman, known for her oftentimes controversial behaviour is also a successful entrepreneur, businesswoman, and the creator of a charitable organization that helps fight hunger on Vancouver’s East Side.

The added star power isn’t the only change to the gala event, building on the success of its debut in 2010, which raised more than 20 thousand dollars for Habitat for Humanity Thunder Bay. At Shoes and Champagne 2, attendees can expect a champagne symposium, cocktail and canapés reception, the Red Carpet Fashion Walk, shopping on-site, and a chance to win one of three prizes for “best dressed.” However, when it comes to bidding on the shoes up for auction, which include high-end designers like Jimmy Choo and Prada, the perfect fit is guaranteed. Instead of bidding on limited sizes, gift certificates will be issued. As well, there will be shoes worn and autographed by celebrities up for bid, like a pair of purple Gucci peep-toe pumps autographed, worn, and donated by Dancing with the Stars competitor, Real Housewives of Beverly Hills/Vanderpump Rules reality star and Restaurateur Lisa Vanderpump.

Habitat for Humanity Thunder Bay CEO, Diane Mitchell spoke enthusiastically at the launch on Friday afternoon, sporting a lovely pair of designer shoes from the last event. Models from Lux Boutique draped in sequins did a fashion walk with some of the shoes up for grabs, and Claman skyped in live from her enviable closet in Vancouver offering a taste of what is to come. Admittedly, while the shoes may not be the most sensible, the funds raised are. All proceeds from the event will contribute to next year’s home builds in the city. And that’s definitely something worth raising a glass and a paddle for.

Shoes and Champagne 2 will be hosted at Bight Restaurant and Mariner’s Hall on Thursday June 20; tickets are $75 each, and can be purchased at Habitat for Humanity’s Restore outlet, or online at Those looking to get up close and personal with Claman can pay an additional $25 for an exclusive VIP cocktail party.