The inspiration behind our made-to-order Lemon Squeezy campaign is from Elisa Jenkins. Elisa, along with Maria Koutsogiannais, owner of Food by Maria and Melanie Cathelin, owner of Greta Jane Paper Co. and us all teamed up to create a limited edition custom Natural Crewneck dubbed Lemon Squeezy. Throughout this past year, Elisa had been battling breast cancer. When we first spoke with Maria about bringing a custom garment to life she wanted to theme the campaign around talking about the things we're scared to talk about, enter Elisa. Inspired by true events about ‘squeezing her lemons’ Elisa’s story is the theme behind the Lemon Squeezy Crewneck. Read more about our made-to-order collaboration below!
We have always been brand friends with Maria Koutsogiannais and couldn’t wait to get a project on the books with her. From our first conversation with Maria, she had told us about her dear friend Elisa Jenkins, who had just been diagnosed with breast cancer and was currently undergoing treatments.
Throughout our first conversation with Maria, it was clear we wanted to produce a campaign that was vulnerable, open and evoked a spirit of transparency. Maria wanted the campaign to be themed around asking hard questions, talking about things we might sweep under the rug and sharing our story, even if that story wasn’t a fairytale we had all grown up expecting. After speaking with Elisa she had shared that it was only when she had found a lump in her breast after “squeezing her lemons” that she had the wherewithal to ask her doctor about what that lump was and what it meant. Elisa’s early diagnosis was attributed largely to her success in beating breast cancer.
“ I attribute a lot of this to finding the lump in be breast early. It is because of this that I am so excited to work with this amazing team to spread awareness, not just about breast cancer, but not being afraid to check yourself and talk with your doctor (no matter your age). “ - Elisa Jenkins
In life, we all are faced with “stuff”, whether that be losing loved ones, dealing with mental health challenges, battling a sickness or a disease, we wanted Lemon Squeezy to be the vehicle that allowed us to bring awareness to asking questions and being upfront with less than desirable conversations.
"I have known Elisa for over 10 years and we have been working together for almost half that time. When Local Laundry reached out to collaborate on a project I knew her story needed to be shared to raise awareness around the stigma of Breast Cancer. I have always checked my boobs for as long as I can remember but I would be lying if I said I didn't panic each time out of fear of possibly finding something. On top of that, I always touched them because I just felt I needed to but we've always misunderstood who cancer can affect and I want to make sure all women around the world understand how cancer impacts them. Cancer does not discriminate against age. But that's why this campaign is so important and I am so excited to be a part of it.” - Maria Koutsogiannais
When we started thinking about what we wanted the Lemon Squeezy design to look like we wanted it to be outside of what you normally see in terms of designs surround breast cancer. We wanted it to be a little quirky and something that a person could wear on the daily and incorporate into their daily lives. Enter, Melanie Cathelin, owner & founder of Greta Jane Paper Co. Melanie suggested we have boobs as the design. Now if you know our Local Laundry designs, you know we’re far from boobs on shirts. But what if boobs were lemons? And each lemon or set of lemons were not-so-secretly drawn as different kinds of boobs. We all agreed; brilliant. The Lemon Squeezy design is the first, and might also be the last of its kind.
"When Local Laundry asked if I would be able to come up with an illustration for their newest campaign, I was not only honoured that they chose to reach out to little ol' me, but also honoured to be included - not just as an illustrator - but as part of the campaign's narrative. That's how I came up with the design - I simply told my story.
I had a partial mastectomy in 2006. From then on, my life seamlessly split into two parts: the me before the surgery with the Originals - smallish B-cups that were with me for 22 years - and the me after the surgery with the New Ladies,
bearing five rigid scars. The New Ladies, with their newly mismatched sizes and scars, gave me evil eyes every time I looked in the mirror. And, through some contortion of body dysmorphia alongside a splash of unattainable notions of beauty standards promoted by society, I became unnecessarily self-conscious about them.
I found myself always noticing people's boobs. These ones are big, those ones are oval, that one is higher...and as time went on I realized no one had normal boobs, not really. So I finally started to embrace the funny look of the New Ladies. Sharing my ridiculous shame about them and joking about it became an ever-so cliche, but needed a coping mechanism. Why did no one talk about how different everyone's boobs are? They are all different and lovely and it should be widely accepted as such! So I started drawing them, and Greta Jane Paper Co. was born.
So when I was asked to come up with something for this campaign, I knew almost immediately what to do. Because ever since opening up about my experience and new accoutrements, I fully believe that sharing stories - and sharing our shapes, our misshapes, scars and sizes - saves lives and allows others to not feel so incredibly alone." - Melanie Cathelin
The Lemon Squeezy design is printed on our Natural Crew. The Natural Crew is hasn’t been dyed with any chemicals and is the natural shade of cotton. Plus, the Natural Crew is made from bamboo cotton making it super soft, and moisture-wicking. As one of our more sustainable garments, the Natural Crew, is naturally antimicrobial, meaning it doesn’t hold a lot of odour, thus you don’t have to wash it as much. The Natural Crew quickly became the perfect backdrop to house the Lemon Squeezy design, not only do the lemons pop, but it’s a premium garment for a premium campaign.
The Lemon Squeezy Crewneck is a limited edition, made-to-order garment, meaning we only put the garments into production when the campaign closes - this is the most sustainable way to create clothing, that way we only sell what we make! The campaign for Lemon Squeezy closes on Oct. 3 at midnight, following that, all garments sold will be put into production. The typical turnaround time is 4-6 weeks so you can expect your packages to start to send mid-November. From each Lemon Squeezy Crewneck purchased we will be donating $25 to the team’s charity of choice, Rethink Breast Cancer.
If you would like to purchase a Lemon Squeezy Crewneck for yourself or someone you know please click here!