Artist Collab: Limited Edition Vulva Print Dungarees and Trousers
Our Vulva Limited Edition unisex dungarees and trousers launched last week and we have been blown away by your amazing response! Here we wanted to share more about the artist, inspiration and the wonderful organisations that we are supporting with this campaign.
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The print in gorgeous orange, turquoise, and blue is designed by Sanna Suvi who is studying Fashion & Textiles at Portsmouth University and is researching the lack of vulva diversity in art and media. Sanna’s work combines social change and green values with clothing design and up-cycling. Check out more here. We love it!
Did you know that 65% of people were embarrassed to say the word vulva?
We want to normalise conversation and remove stigma surrounding vulva’s, vaginas, gynaecological anatomy and periods - and have fun doing it! No one should feel embarrassed to use these terms and what better way to kick start the conversation then to wear one.
And the best part?
We are working with a wonderful set of organisations to encourage discussion, raise awareness and support for very important causes particularly period poverty. We envisage a world in which no person suffers from period poverty or stigma associated with their periods.
Read more about about period poverty and our wonderful partners below...
The problem of period poverty
Period poverty is a problem which is still very prevalent both in the UK and globally. Most people have experienced an occasional struggle to manage a period, but for some, they dread every month as they don't have the sanitary products they need. Sanitary products in the UK are classed as a “luxury, non-essential item” and taxed at 5 per cent — with the average lifetime cost of sanitary products estimated at £4,800, with some figures quoted as high as £18,000 over a course of a lifetime!
It's a big issue: 1 in 10 people between 14-21 cannot afford period products and over 137,700 children in the UK have missed school because of period poverty.
While in India, 20% of students drop out of education entirely after their period begins and in Kenya more than 1 million students miss up to six weeks of schools each year due to lack of access to menstrual products.
There's been an amazing campaign run by Pink Protest and many activists to make sure the UK government understands the problem and starts to make some changes. Last year they succeeded and in March 2019, the UK Government pledged to provide free period product in all English primary and secondary schools and colleges from 2020. That's a great step forward, but there's plenty more to do and the problem still exists nationally. For example, there are 70,000+ homeless people alone with limited to no access to period products that need it.
So what are we doing about it?
With each pair of Vulva dungarees or trousers purchased, one pack of plastic free sanitary products will be donated to one of our two chosen charities through Hey Girls; Freedom 4 Girls and Homeless Period Brighton. Read more on our wonderful partners below...
Founded by Celia Hodson and her daughters Becky and Kate, Hey Girls is a brilliant social enterprise that donate comfy, chlorine and bleach-free, environmentally friendly sanitary wear to tackle period poverty in the UK. Their Buy One Give One products go directly to help young people in need – for every box purchased by an organisation or individual, pays for another box to be given away by Hey Girls; who effectively match it! The sanitary products they donate include pads made from bamboo and corn fibre, 100% organic cotton tampons and medical-grade reusable menstrual cups.
Freedom 4 Girls
Based in Leeds, Freedom 4 Girls support those who menstruate by challenging the stigmas, taboos and gender inequalities associated with menstruation through education, provision of menstrual health management solutions and actively being at the forefront of the wider campaign against period poverty.
They actively support people who menstruate in both the UK and in East Africa, who struggle to access safe menstrual hygiene protection by offering not just disposables, but environmentally-friendly, washable re-usables and menstrual cups.
Homeless Period Brighton is a volunteer led campaign that provide sanitary items to homeless and vulnerable people who have periods and very limited to no access to products. In addition to this campaign, our Brighton store is a drop-off point for period products that will go to Homeless Period Brighton. So if you can pop in, don't forget to bring any sanitary or hygiene products you can spare, so we can pass them on to the people who need them.
The Eve Appeal
In addition to a sanitary pack donation with every purchase, 5% of all sales from the Vulva capsule collection will be donated to The Eve Appeal, the only UK national charity funding research and raising awareness and funds for the prevention and early detection of the five gynaecological cancers – womb, ovarian, cervical, vulval and vaginal.
Athena Lamnisos, CEO of The Eve Appeal puts it perfectly;
'The Eve Appeal’s mantra is: know your body. If you don’t know what’s normal for you, then you can’t hope to spot when something isn’t and get yourself to a doctor in time. With gynaecological health, spotting those signs early is critical – unusual bleeding, discharge, skin changes, lumps, bloating – they may not mean cancer, but you need to get checked out. It’s perfect to be working with Lucy and Yak – what better way to challenge the taboos that surround all things gynae than by wearing a diverse range of them. With 60% of women not able to correctly label an anatomical diagram (and know the difference between the vulva and vagina) we hope this partnership might just make a real difference. Driving funds into awareness and research is key to prevention and the 5% donation from the vulva collection to support these groundbreaking programmes will take us one step closer to banishing the internal body shaming that surrounds our bodies.”
Here is to a world of open and honest conversation where no one is ashamed or embarrassed by their bodies, everyone has bodily autonomy and we can all celebrate our diversity!
Find out more about our fabrics and how we work, and don’t forget, You can enter #yakmirrorselfiemonday and #FlatLandY! We'll post our favourite mirror selfies in our Instagram stories every Monday and our fave flat lays every Friday!
Each winner bags a £25 L&Y voucher, so have some fun and get involved!