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How A Weekend Visit Sparked A Design Revolution

OUR STORY

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

A Rude Awakening

 

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. And I was annoyed about that.

 

I felt like the one kid who had school when everyone else got a snow day. Strapping on an uncomfortable, constrictive bra meant saying goodbye to Saturday morning freedom and hello to squeezy weekday discomfort.

 

That's the day I started looking for comfortable, supportive bra alternatives.

The Search Was On

 

I looked for years. Literally.

 

I scoured stores and the internet.

I tried everything.

Bands and Hooks and Wires Oh My


My goal was to find a way to LOOK fully dressed while FEELING like I was in pajamas. I tried everyting:  built-in bras, shelf-bras, comfort bras, shapewear support camis. Nothing I found ticked all the boxes. I wanted to  feel comfortable and be well-supported, but it was always a trade-off. I could find one or two but never all three. 

What I found was that the comfortable options offered little to no support, or bad support:  uniboob, armpit boob, etc.

And the more supportive options were just as uncomfortable as bras, with their oppressively tight elastic chest bands or constrictive shapewear fabric. They often still used torturous bra-like hardware like wires, hard nylon straps, squeezy nylon compression fabric, or gratuitous foam padding that added unwanted bulk.

Designing the Anti-Shapewear

At this point, I had a fire in my belly that wasn't just reflux from my tight bra band. I knew there had to be a better way, so I set out to make it.

 I spent the next six years designing prototypes, consulting with technical experts, sourcing fabrics and searching for factories. All to solve the one big problem: how to shape and support a full bust effectively and gently—without the painful constriction of tight chest bands and straps. 

Learning That A Lot of Women Need This

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

But there were many, many more who understood. On my journey I talked with dozens of women who felt the same way I did. Whether they were full-busted or mature-busted, or even small-busted, they all agreed that innovation was sorely needed in the area of bust coverage and support.

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

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Finding Bra Freedom
 

It was complicated. There were many failures and obstacles along the way. I worried that it might be impossible. After all, why wouldn't the "experts" already have thought of this? It seemed so obviously necessary. 

 

But after years of hard work and determination, and with the help of other entrepreneurial women along the way, I discovered something amazing.

 

It wasn't impossible. It was complicated and expensive and technical, but it was possible. The day I tried on the final designthe one that eliminated the tight chest band AND all the other discomfortswas a very, very good day.

In the process of eliminating the tight chest band and all the other hardware, I realized, I eliminated the bra, too. And did it so effectively that this new support system has been awarded a patent, won two International Design Awards, and sparked a bra-free clothing revolution.

 

The best part of this story is that women now have a truly new choice: easy, effortless clothing that effectively lifts and shapes fuller busts. They have the option of built-in support that actually feels comfortable and actually looks greatThese are styles that real women can wear anywhere, from home to office and from gym to 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. These styles have been life-changing for me. I hope they will be for you, too.

Sending you hugs of support!

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 questioning the tight chest band, and thinking entirely differently about where support comes from and how it should feel.

Embrago is my answer. 

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