A Gloucestershire-based swimwear designer is set to create a special swimwear line to provide more options for women who have been through a mastectomy.
Natasha Griggs, founder of Cheltenham-based Topaz Swimwear, has set about creating a bespoke line that will emulate the luxury brand’s wider range.
Currently in the research stage with Gloucestershire Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust as the supporting partner, Topaz will now begin working with the Gloucester Cancer Institute and the Hospital Charity — with the initial designs expected following market research via clinical patients and post patient feedback.
The company said it would look to incorporate features such as sewn-in breast pockets for waterproof prosthesis, clickable and attachable pockets, moulded foam underbusts, elastic underbusts with silicone support details, as well as altered features like higher necklines and armholes.
The number of mastectomies is not reflected in the post-surgery swimwear options women encounter. One of the major concerns for women after breast surgery is a perceived loss of femininity, which is at the forefront of their post-surgery psychological needs.
These same concealment issues influence the clothing women buy and I believe women post-mastectomy should be empowered to make choices that enhance the image they have.
Topaz’s collaboration with the NHS on the project began after an introduction facilitated by The Growth Hub.
Paul Spenley, Business Guide at The Growth Hub, said
We were able to help Natasha secure funding during the early stages of her business model and since then the reach of her products has grown exponentially.
This new mastectomy swimwear line is a testament to Natasha’s character and the brand’s underlying ethos that fashion should be accessible to all. Having just marked Breast Cancer Awareness Month, there has never been a more fitting time to develop a product like this.
The Growth Hub has been a reliable port of call throughout my business journey and if it wasn’t for them, partnerships like this one would not have been possible.
They have helped us steer through the crazy time that was the pandemic and I couldn't recommend their services more to any budding Gloucestershire business owners.
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