How A Weekend Visit Sparked A Design Revolution


It started when my family had friends visiting for the weekend. Five kids, two families, we were all excited for the sleepover.

A Rude Wakeup Call

I love cozy group weekends. Everyone rolls out of bed all tousled and pajama'd, gathering in the kitchen for breakfast.

But that Saturday morning, I realized something had changed. (Maybe after the second baby? Maybe after I passed 40?)

I was aware of my chest in a way I hadn't been before. Self-consciously, I realized that staying in my pajamas, braless, would have been obvious and socially awkward.

I had to put on a bra.

Not Fair

Goodbye, Saturday morning freedom. Hello, squeezy weekday discomfort.

I felt like the one kid who had school when everyone else got a snow day.

Promises, Promises

That's the day I started looking for comfortable, supportive bra alternatives. And I looked, literally, for years. I scoured stores and the internet.


I tried everything.

Bands, Bands, Everywhere

From built-in bras to shelf-bras (ha) to support camisoles, nothing felt comfortable and supportive and made me feel attractive. It was always a trade-off. And the support, when there was any, still  relied on the same oppressively tight chest bands that bras used.

Fire in My Belly

At this point, I had a fire in my belly that wasn't just reflux from my tight bra band! I was determined to fix this.

 So I spent the next six years designing prototypes, seeking out technical experts, sourcing fabrics and factories. All to solve the one big problem: how to shape and support a full bust comfortably -- without that hateful chest band. 

It Wasn't Just About Me

A lot of people thought I was foolish to spend all that time, energy, and money obsessing over this unique challenge of feminine physics.

But all my full-busted peers? They understood.


They -- YOU -- needed this as much as I did. 


Finally Free 

After years of work and with the help of lots of other entrepreneurial women along the way, I did it.

I eliminated the tight chest band.

And in the process, I eliminated the bra, too. So effectively that this new construction is patented and has won two International Design Awards.

Most importantly, I created a truly new choice for women: easy, effortless clothing that effectively lifts and shapes fuller busts with built-in support and actually feels comfortable and looks great


These are styles that real women like us can wear anywhere -- home, office, gym, events -- and still feel Saturday-morning free,  any time.

Designing clothes with compassion for our curves is my way of making our world a little bit better.

Karen Poirier, Founder​

I'm from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, an American city with a long history of hard work and innovation. 

I was raised to be independent and to solve problems. If I didn't know how to do something, I was expected to figure it out.

That upbringing has always made me question the way things "have always been done" when I see room for improvement.

And I see a lot of room for improvement when it comes to dressing a fuller bust.

For me, it starts with eliminating the tight chest band and thinking entirely differently about where support comes from and how it should feel.

Embrago is my answer.