COVID couture: Calgary fashion brands feature medical chiefs on T-shirts

CALGARY — Two Calgary clothing makers and a local artist have teamed up on a line of T-shirts honouring three now-popular female public health officials.

The shirts have colourful renderings of Canada's chief public health officer, Dr. Theresa Tam, as well as Dr. Deena Hinshaw and Dr. Bonnie Henry, the chief medical officers of Alberta and British Columbia.

Fashion lines SophieGrace and Madame Premier are selling the shirts, with the portraits by Calgary artist Mandy Stobo, on their websites.  

The shirts cost $45 and net proceeds are going to charities that focus on food security: the Greater Vancouver Food Bank, Fresh Routes in Calgary and Second Harvest in Toronto.

SophieGrace founder Emma May says there will be a limited run of no more than 300 or 400 shirts.

She says both her brand and Madame Premier are female-focused, so it made sense to celebrate three high-profile women who have become trusted leaders during the COVID-19 pandemic.

"There's something about the scientists and the measured voice that they have and the trust that people have in them that's really connecting, I think, for our communities."

May said Madame Premier already had some blank white shirts available and a local shop is printing them up while following physical distancing rules.

"This is our small little way of seeing how we can try and give back," said May. "I think everybody just wants to feel like they're part of a solution rather than part of a problem."

This report by The Canadian Press was first published on March 26, 2020

Lauren Krugel, The Canadian Press