White Party windfall

Wearing White After Labour Day For Windfall

January's blistering cold is especially hard on those less fortunate, but a bunch of fashion types went fundraising for Windfall last night at Wear White 4 Windfall's Winter White Party, and Frugal Fashion Week's WhoWhatWEARWhenWhy, showing how our city was able to help out in style.

Man-about-town and restaurateur Toufik Sarwa hosted his annual Winter White Party at his new resto Cinq 01, where everyone from Ainsley Kerr to Shawn Hewson schmoozed in their winter whites.

Wear White 4 Windfall

I chatted with event co-chair Jennifer Campbell about the month-long Wear White 4 Windfall event, which has been going for five years to support Windfall. Windfall donates 14 million new items to people in need every year, which are distributed through 100 local social services agencies (the raised cash goes towards things like the agencies' distribution costs and buying items like snowsuits at cost).

Participating companies include The Gap and H&M (this raised my eyebrows a little, as H&M is still stinging from their recent bad press; the New York Times reported that they were slashing and dumping masses of unsold clothes rather than donating them). Every dollar raised means roughly $28 of new clothing that can be given away (and keeps 100 tons of product out of landfills).

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As to why the event was held in January, Campbell says that the cold will help remind participants that there are fellow city-dwellers who often can't afford to stay warm--this year, Campbell hopes to raise $50,000 for the cause. People have been donating $4 a pop to wear white at work, while local businesses have been debuting white-themed offerings for the cause.

Over at Queen Street West eatery Nyood, Frugal Fashion Week kicked off its new fundraising series, WhoWhatWEARWhenWhy. Designers like Another Word For Pink, Decadent Designs, Yvette Le Roy, Our Lady, Patricia O'Connor, and Faren showed a handful of looks each to support the cause.

Fashion often gets a bad rap as being frivolous, but, as Campbell says, there's nothing like new clothes to give you "a sense of hope and dignity."

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Wear White 4 Windfall photos by Adam Moco; WhoWhatWEARWhenWhy photos by Jonathan Loek.

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