Gord Downie suit designer raises money with keychains from leftovers
Limited-edition keychains sold out, proceeds to benefit Tragically Hip singer's brain cancer research fund
Keychains made from scraps of leather used to tailor Gord Downie's eye-catching metallic suits were a hot item online Friday.
In several hours the limited-edition keychains from fashion designer Izzy Camilleri had sold out on a website raising money for brain cancer research.
Camilleri, who created Downie's look on the Tragically Hip's Man Machine Poem tour, came up with the idea to give fans a souvenir of the singer's iconic look.
After the Hip's final Kingston, Ont., tour stop in August, she says there was extra leather from Downie's seven suit designs, originally meant for minor repairs and alterations. She repurposed the leftovers into 1,000 keychains shaped like guitars and embossed them with .courageforgord.
Each was selling for $25 on the CourageForGord.org website with proceeds going to the Gord Downie Fund for Brain Cancer Research at Toronto's Sunnybrook Hospital.
The seven outfits were each named after someone Downie considered instrumental in helping him prepare for the tour. The gold suit was coined "Paul" for Hip bandmate Paul Langlois, the silver suit was dubbed "Patrick" after Downie's brother and the turquoise suit, "Edgar," was dedicated to his father, who died last year.
Downie's assistant "Jenn" has her name tied to the acid green suit while two musical icons were also given a nod — the purple suit is called "Prince" and the mirror ball suit is "Bowie." Camilleri's hot pink suit design was named after herself.
Two custom leather jackets will also be up for auction on the website starting Saturday. Both were created "in the spirit of what she designed for Downie."
One is in metallic silver sized in a men's large while a metallic pink female version is sized medium. Camilleri says she hopes to raise $25,000 from both the keychains and jackets.