day eighty-four

in addition to my cbc interview, a couple of weeks ago i was also interviewed by the local newspaper. my story made the front cover which was a fun surprise! here is a copy of the article.


Giving back with some fashion making do

By Margaret Brand
The Review-Mirror

This winter and spring Christine Chu is learning to enjoy the clothes she already has so that she can give back to one of her favorite organizations.

The money she would normally have spent on clothing, and haircuts she is donating to Almost Home, a centre in Kingston which provides daily accommodation and respite for families whose children are receiving medical treatment in Kingston area hospitals.

Chu's self imposed discipline for January to July includes wearing one of two brown dresses every day and making do with the clothes and accessories she already has as well as items she is given.

In June 2008 Chu spent three weeks at Almost Home after her son Tenzin arrived too early and had to spend time in the neonatal ICU before going home to Althorpe with his mother.

“I always wanted to give back to them in some way. We didn’t really have the financial means,” she said.

Chu is donating the money she would have spent on clothes and haircuts to Almost Home.

She got some inspiration from “The Uniform Project”, a New York City based project which is raising money for an education project in India. A woman has been wearing the same styled black dress for a year. The project has raised over $56,000 over the last ten months.

Every day Chu takes a photo of her outfit, outlines the price and provenance of what she’s been wearing and posts it on a blog at

The blog has become a constant for Chu, a stay at home mum completing distance education to pursue a career as a medical transcriptionist.

“It’s taught me about the generosity of other people. I’ve gotten donations I didn’t expect,” she said.

Almost Home relies entirely on the generosity of private and corporate donors, as well as fundraisers, to obtain the $250,000 they need to keep the home operating.

The eleven bedroom home was purchased n 1992 after a capital campaign by a group of citizens who saw a need in the community for support for families whose children were receiving treatment at area hospitals.

The building they purchased on Williams Street was converted back into one home, which now includes eleven bedrooms and a small apartment in the rear for a night manager.

Information on Almost Home, as well as the ability to donate online is available at


today's look while taking a few moments to relax:

blue t-shirt under dress: donated by kimberly's deja vu boutique (details below) for this project - thanks! (free)
blue silk tie around waist: also donated by kimberly - thanks! (free)
brown tights: (about $12)
black fishnets worn over brown tights: the bay (about $10)
black ruffled platform wedge sandals: if footwear, about ten months old (about $110)

grand total:
about $132.08

kimberly's deja vu boutique
sommerville centre, 6835 highway 62 north (1 mile off the 401)
belleville, ontario k8n 4z5