JOY TWENTY SIX... What's in a name?

I'm sure every brand has a story behind their name, why they chose it, or what does it mean? Well mine is a special one to me, one that makes me think of my wonderful Nan. The Joy part comes from her name, Joyce. The 26 part is the year she was born, 1926, and so we have the start of Joy Twenty Six.

My Nan was someone who gave me a lot of Joy in my life and I'm so glad she was a part of it. She was born in Liverpool, she loved the city and never moved away. My Nan was very independent, funny, kind and always made sure you had something to eat when visiting, usually a cuppa tea or 3, and a plate of biscuits. I loved our weekly catch ups, she always had a good story to tell, whilst watching whatever sport was being shown on the TV that day. She used to love gardening and sewing on her machine, and I'm grateful of these skills that she passed on to me.

My Nan passed away in April 2019 at the age of 93. I think she would probably feel a bit embarrassed that I had used part of her name but I know she would have fully supported me along the way. As long as I was happy, that was all that mattered in her eyes. Just enjoy life!

When we cleared my Nan's house out we came across an old picture board game, it brought so many wonderful happy memories back looking at those vibrant 1960's illustrations. It was those illustrations that inspired and helped me to come up with the designs you see on sale today. That's how the brand and the designs are linked together by that one special person, my Nanny Joyce.

JOY TWENTY SIX... The journey.

Joy Twenty Six began its journey in the summer of 2020. Creating the brand has been a mixture of events coming together and the time felt right to do it now. I’m Louise, designer and owner of Joy Twenty Six. I’m also from Liverpool where I live with my husband and two beautiful boys. I have been a designer in the retail industry for over 16 years where I specialised in print and swimwear design.

I have worked for UK online retailers Littlewoods, Very, JD Williams and Simply Be. I created the seasonal trends, designed the ranges and worked on celebrity and branded swimwear ranges for Myleene Klass, Coleen Rooney and Little Mistress. I have also worked freelance helping small luxury swimwear brands get off the ground, and recently I have been working on a project to help suppliers in Tunisia break into the UK market. All of this has given me a wealth of knowledge along the way of how the industry works, both good and bad.

I have been lucky enough to travel to India, Hong Kong and China, working with suppliers and seeing the production process from the beginning to end. I have loved designing over the years but recently I have become more aware of the damage the fast fashion industry is having on the environment and sometimes it doesn't make me feel totally proud of my part in it.

I've seen many changes within retail over the years but one issue that doesn't seem to be changing quick enough is how we produce clothing. There are huge failures from big retailers who are not doing their part within this process and there is a need for the consumer to shift in the way we buy. These failures start from how the fabrics are produced and the use of harmful chemicals to the way they are delivered to your door in layers of plastic. 

I believe we should still have the option to buy new clothes but the clothes should be made in the right way and delivered to you in a more eco-friendly fashion.

JOY TWENTY SIX... What are we doing?

So, what are we doing about it here at Joy Twenty Six?

My main aim when creating this brand firstly, was to make it something I was proud to wear and sell myself. I wanted to make sure that the range was made in the most eco-friendly way possible, using materials that are kinder to the world we live in. Joy Twenty Six is going to be selling a selection of T-shirts in unisex adult sizes, matching kids styles and also tote bags. I wanted the range to give a sense of diversity and inclusion to all.

I want everything to be produced in a sustainable and ethical way and made from 100% organic cotton and recycled fabrics.  All prints are created with water based inks. Our products are certified by the Global Organic Textile Standard, audited by the Fair Wear Foundation and are 100% vegan approved by PETA.

As a small business, we are conscious of the mark we are leaving and the impact we are having on the Earth. Joy Twenty Six wants to make the correct choices as much as possible from the way the products are made to how you receive them.

Here's some information as to what we are doing so far.

Organic cotton

All our T-shirts are made from organic cotton. Organic cotton is a natural, GMO-free fibre that uses less water than standard cotton. In addition, its production does not involve the use of chemicals (no fertilisers or pesticides).

GOTS certified & The Global Organic Textile Standard (GOTS) is the worldwide leading textile processing standard for organic fibres. They check the production of the organic cotton from farm to factory. Joy Twenty Six T-shirts and bags are all GOTS-certified and audited by the Fair Wear Foundation under Fair Wear standards.

Fair Wear Certified

This ensures that there is no use of child labour, no use of forced labour, there are safe and healthy working conditions, legal labour contracts, payment of living wage, freedom of association and the right to collective bargaining, no discrimination against employees and no excessive hours of work.

PETA Certified

This means that no animal testing for ingredients, formulations, or finished products has been conducted or commissioned at any point. All apparel is made from 100% vegan materials.

Eco Friendly inks

Our prints are made from 100% solvent-free water-based inks. They are vegan and have not been tested or taken from any animal derived ingredients. They also don't contain any harmful solvent type ingredients and are totally eco friendly.

Natural Fibres

All the yarns we use are made from 100% natural fibres and contain no plastics. Our main yarn used is 100% merino wool, this is what we knit our scarfs, snoods, hats, headbands and blankets in. Its pretty special stuff! Did you know that is natural, biodegradable, helps to regulate body temperature, its hypoallergenic, eco friendly and sustainable. That's just some of the wonderful reasons why we use it. 

Plastic Free

We want to be a business that uses no plastic. We use recyclable tissue paper, recycled and recyclable paper mailer, all card and papers used for stickers, thank you and business cards are all recyclable or made from recycled paper.

JOY TWENTY SIX... Thank you x

I hope you love Joy Twenty Six's range as much as I have loved designing them. Thanks for visiting and I’m so happy to have you on this journey with me. If you have any questions please do not hesitate get in touch either through email or on our social media.

Louise x