Lara Smith

Calgary sleepwear line supports women and breast cancer research

Lusomé Founder and CEO Lara Smith (right) with sister Erin
Seeing my sister Erin – a young mother – struggle with the emotional blow and then the physical toll of cancer treatment made me want to do something to help women feel confident.

During the 2 decades she spent travelling the world as a fashion buyer, Calgarian Lara Smith dreamed of starting her own clothing line. But she never expected that her sister’s journey through breast cancer would be the inspiration behind it.

Lara’s line of quick-drying and elegant women’s sleepwear, Lusomé, was launched as a labour of love in 2014 - along with a 5 year commitment to growing the Lusomé Cancer Research Fund of the Canadian Cancer Society. The fund is supporting our nation’s most innovative breast cancer research.

The fabric that distinguishes Lusomé sleepwear is designed to comfort women who suffer frustrating night sweats brought on by cancer treatment, or other health-related issues. The name Lusomé is derived from a Scottish term that means “desirable”.

“Cancer can make women feel less beautiful, and less in control of their bodies,” says Lara.

“Seeing my sister Erin - a young mother - struggle with the emotional blow and then the physical toll of cancer treatment, made me want to do something to help women feel confident.”

Erin was diagnosed with stage II breast cancer during summer 2011, at the age of 40, and as a mother of 2 young children. Because her lymph nodes were affected, she had an aggressive treatment plan that included surgery, chemotherapy and radiation. She is now cancer-free, and receives hormone therapy to lower the risk of cancer recurrence.

Lara created the Lusomé Cancer Research Fund to honour Erin and to help enable the Society’s coast-to-coast impact. To support the fund, Lara donates 10% of Lusomé sales from the Erin and Donna styles each year; between October and December. The sleepwear line has quickly grown in popularity across North America.

“It’s a euphoric feeling to give back,” says Lara.

“For me, Lusomé has rounded out the entrepreneurial and the responsible: helping women during one of the hardest times of their life.”

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