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Yellowberry: Meet the teen titan who is taking on the youth bra industry

Posted by on Apr. 11, 2014 at 10:29 AM
  • 116 Replies
3 moms liked this

Yellowberry: Meet the teen titan who is taking on the youth bra industry


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It took only one trip to the mall to show Megan Grassell what was wrong with the bra industry. And 10 months of hard work to figure out how to change it.

Today, the 18-year-old high school senior from Jackson Hole, Wyoming, is the founder of Yellowberry, an underwear company that’s making wholesome, age-appropriate bras for girls aged 11-15.

That’s the sort of thing Megan couldn’t find a year ago when she took her kid sister Mary Margaret, then 13, shopping for her first bra.

“It was an awkward moment for her, but a chance for me to show off my sisterly knowledge,” Megan wrote in the Kickstarter pitch that helped get Yellowberryoff the ground.

“I couldn’t believe the bras that she was supposed to buy,” she added. “The choices for her, and for all girls her age, were simply appalling to me. They were all padded, push-up and sexual. Not only that, they did not fit her body properly, which automatically made me wonder ‘Where were the young, cute and realistic bras for girls?’ There were none!”

That ‘Eureka!’ moment was the spark that created Yellowberry — and may have ripple effects throughout the teen lingerie world, which has been the target of significant consumer activism in recent years.

“It was literally like an epiphany,” Megan told Lingerie Talk this week. “I was holding a bra in my hands and I just said, ‘This is not okay. I’m going to make bras for girls.’”

She turned to the crowdfunding site Kickstarter hoping to raise $25,000 to launchYellowberry, and was stunned by the response. When the 30-day campaign ended on Sunday, it had raised almost $42,000 to finance Yellowberry’s first production order, making it one of the most successful Kickstarter campaigns everfor an underwear or lingerie start-up.


Yellowberry is as much a movement as it is a bra company, using its marketing and merchandising platform to fight back against the hyper-sexualized commercial environment that adolescent girls face every day. Fans are called “Berries” and the company’s motto — “Changing the bra industry for young girls”— boldly challenges the status quo.

Yellowberry will be different because at the core of the company what we want to do is sell a bra in a non-sexy way,” Megan said. “In lingerie, that’s a new idea.”

“For those girls aged 11 to 15 the options they have to buy are for the most part overly sexual. They need a different bra that doesn’t scream ‘sex’.

“You shouldn’t have to buy a sequined push-up bra when you’re 13. You shouldn’t have to feel pressured to look a certain way.”


Yellowberry is already on the market, with a professional website and online shop selling two youth bra styles in four colors, with cute names like ‘Tweetheart’and ‘Tiny Teton’ for about $40. The cotton-spandex pieces are soft and metal-free, designed to provide a comfortable transition between children’s undershirts and the style-driven world of molded cups and T-shirt bras that lies ahead.

Yellowberry gives girls the idea that they don’t have to grow up so quickly,” Megan said.

“We’re not saying what’s right or wrong. It’s not my right to tell someone what’s appropriate or not,” she added. “I just want everyone to have another option.”

The Yellowberry name is a symbol of the need to nurture adolescent girls during a critical and challenging time in their development.

“Think about a berry before you pick it,” Megan said. “It’s still yellow. It’s not yet ripe. It has to go through certain stages until it is ripe. And you can’t rush those stages because they are what will eventually create a beautiful berry.”

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Megan had no experience in business or fashion when she came up with the concept for Yellowberry, but that didn’t stop her.

She worked with a seamstress in Jackson Hole to develop prototypes, sourced a manufacturer in Los Angeles and spent months fit-testing samples with the help of local friends.

She had a gut feeling the concept would catch fire, but after the first four days of her Kickstarter campaign, Yellowberry had received only $2,000 in donations and little attention. Undaunted, Megan reached out to Facebook groups, companies and online groups that promoted causes aimed at empowering young women.

Then, however, schoolwork intervened and Megan headed to Guatemala for a week-long class trip, a journey that left her without internet access for a full day.

When the students arrived at their Guatemala City hotel, Megan plugged in her computer, checked her Kickstarter campaign … and started crying. Yellowberryhad gone viral overnight, and was already past its $25,000 funding goal.

More than 1,000 donors contributed to the campaign, many of them young girls — and their parents — who are enthusiastically supportive of the new company and its mission.

"Hang on, let me send a PM to Jesus so he can join this name calling ignorance ...he's into that these days ...at least according to his peeps."
- sak

by on Apr. 11, 2014 at 10:29 AM
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Replies (1-10):
VooDooB
by weird cheese on Apr. 11, 2014 at 10:29 AM

Sorry, I has having some technical problems. ;p

Here's the source:
http://www.lingerietalk.com/2014/04/08/lingerie-news/yellowberry-meet-the-teen-titan-who-is-taking-on-the-youth-bra-industry.html

Here's the website:
http://www.yellowberrycompany.com/


I don't have, and never will have a daughter. However I've noticed over the years how "sexy" the teen bras are in stores - even Target. I'm glad girls will have more choices.

Moms of current teen & pre-teen girls, have you had any problems finding bras for your daughters? 

"Hang on, let me send a PM to Jesus so he can join this name calling ignorance ...he's into that these days ...at least according to his peeps."
- sak

matofour
by Bronze Member on Apr. 11, 2014 at 10:31 AM
2 moms liked this
Hahaha! I just looked this company up.

Over 40 for a bra! A cotton kids bra.
FromAtoZ
by AllieCat on Apr. 11, 2014 at 10:34 AM
2 moms liked this

Hmmmm, interesting.

I am going to have to check this out.

I don't mind paying $40 for a bra for my 14 year old.  Not if it is going to support her and be comfortable and appropriate.

The message is a good one .

FromAtoZ
by AllieCat on Apr. 11, 2014 at 10:35 AM


Quoting VooDooB:

Sorry, I has having some technical problems. ;p

Here's the source:http://www.lingerietalk.com/2014/04/08/lingerie-news/yellowberry-meet-the-teen-titan-who-is-taking-on-the-youth-bra-industry.html

Here's the website:http://www.yellowberrycompany.com/


I don't have, and never will have a daughter. However I've noticed over the years how "sexy" the teen bras are in stores - even Target. I'm glad girls will have more choices.

Moms of current teen & pre-teen girls, have you had any problems finding bras for your daughters? 

It is ridiculous, the selection out there for young girls. 

VooDooB
by weird cheese on Apr. 11, 2014 at 10:35 AM

That does seem very expensive. Too bad they can't be more affordable.

Quoting matofour: Hahaha! I just looked this company up. Over 40 for a bra! A cotton kids bra.


"Hang on, let me send a PM to Jesus so he can join this name calling ignorance ...he's into that these days ...at least according to his peeps."
- sak

paganbaby
by Teflon Don on Apr. 11, 2014 at 10:40 AM

Hopefully the price will go down soon.

Quoting VooDooB:

That does seem very expensive. Too bad they can't be more affordable.

Quoting matofour: Hahaha! I just looked this company up. Over 40 for a bra! A cotton kids bra.




I will not have a temper tantrum nor stomp across the floor.


I will not pout, scream or shout or kick against the door.

I will not throw my food around nor pick upon another.

I’ll always try to be real good because I am the mother.

I am the mother.

I am the mother.














paganbaby
by Teflon Don on Apr. 11, 2014 at 10:42 AM
1 mom liked this

I love the idea. I have two daughters; my 14 year old is already in adult bras *Sniffs* and the baby 7 so I have a ways. By the time my youngest is old enough I would definitely look into those bras.

PinkButterfly66
by Silver Member on Apr. 11, 2014 at 10:46 AM

Those are exactly the kinds of bras my daughter likes to wear.  She has no desire to wear underwire and she was gifted with my MIL's boobs so she's sporting a b-cup and doesn't need underwire.  

randi1978
by Bronze Member on Apr. 11, 2014 at 10:47 AM
1 mom liked this

My daughter is 10 1/2 and while still no sign of needing anything just yet, I would def support this company.  Might only be able to afford one or two, tho, LOL.

I think what this young woman started is awesome. 

LauraKW
by "Dude!" on Apr. 11, 2014 at 11:06 AM
Overall that age bracket has a nice disposable income. It's a good market.

Quoting matofour: Hahaha! I just looked this company up.

Over 40 for a bra! A cotton kids bra.
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