Millie, a new post-surgery brand based in Nottingham, has launched a crowdfunding campaign on Kickstarter to fund the production of its first lingerie design.
Founder Susan Pringle has worked with Laura Stanford, a former designer at M&S, Debenhams and Agent Provocateur, to develop a soft cup, non-wired, pocketed bra designed for women to wear after breast cancer treatment.
Millie was conceived in response to Pringle’s fruitless search for a suitable bra after going through breast cancer twice – once in 2002 when she had a mastectomy and reconstruction surgery and again in 2012, which disrupted her breast shape.
“I searched high and low for a beautiful and comfortable bra, failed on an epic scale, and decided that rather being grumpy about it, I’d better do something about it,” she said.
Pringle’s aim is to raise £30,000 by pre-selling 500 or more bras on Kickstarter.
Funds raised will fuel the next phase of technical development, which includes grading and fitting, and Millie’s first production run.
Investors who do not wish to purchase a Millie bra, can gift their rewards to women who have been through breast cancer treatment via two charities: Keeping Abreast and The Nottingham Hospitals Charity.
“Our initial focus is to reach consumers directly so that we can deliver product to the market, being worn and talked about, and use these insights to build traction to raise investment finance to develop our bra wardrobe launch collection, scale our business, and take it to the lingerie trade,” said Pringle.
As well as building financial support to deliver the product to market, the focus of Millie’s activities is to raise awareness of the practical and psychological impacts of breast cancer.
The brand has launched a new social media campaign called #isItJustMe, providing a platform for women to talk about the impact of breast cancer treatments.