Kupuna Achiever: Fashion designer uses love of fashion to give back to community

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Jeanie Chun is an internationally renowned fashion designer and has been in the fashion business for over 45 years. She has had several high fashion boutiques in Waikiki and dressed many prominent personalities, including former Hawaii first ladies and former first lady Hillary Clinton. Today, she uses her love of fashion to give back to the community.

Originally from Seoul, Korea, many of Chun’s award garments are exhibited at “The Modern Costume Museum of Korea” in Seoul. “I love being creative using my hands,” she said. “I love designing anything.”

The designer has done business in the United States, France, Canada, Korea and Japan. In 2003, she received the Hawaii Business Woman of the Year Award from the U.S. Business Advisory Council of Washingto, D.C.

Chun is the founder and president of Jeanie Chun’s Club De La Mode, a ladies only social club for those who like to be fashionable and stylish. Chun says these women want to continue their elegant image even though they are retired or no longer in the public’s eye, so she produces special events for members so they can dress up and have fun.

“I enjoy being a fashion designer,” Chun said. “When you make something that adds to the beauty around you or someone else, it makes you happy also.”

Chun has put on many charity fundraising fashion shows throughout the years. Presently, she holds creative art work seminars for ladies’ clubs where she teaches women how to redesign old garments, shoes and jewelry and turn them into new fashion. She also does music ministry work for her church’s outreach service.

“Community service is sharing who you are,” she said. “Every person who has good values should offer to help if someone needs help. It really makes you happy more than the people receiving help from you.”

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