The mental health conscious company has been accepted to the Joe Fresh Centre for Fashion Innovation

The Fredericton-based clothing company Wear Your Label, a business focused on eradicating the stigma around mental illness, is expanding in 2016 and trying to make its line of T-shirts more innovative.

Wear Your Label was created two years ago by Kayley Reed and Kyle MacNevin after they bonded over their own struggles — an eating disorder, anxiety and ADHD.

Their T-shirt line displayed messages such as, “self care isn’t selfish.”

“It’s such a personal issue for so many people. One in five Canadians will experience a mental illness, but every Canadian will experience stress or will feel anxious or nervous … It’s not just about mental illness but it’s about mental health,” said Reed.

Their company was accepted into the Joe Fresh Centre for Fashion Innovation in Toronto a few months ago. It’s an 18-month program meant to push their company forward.

“We were chosen … we are the only one out of the greater Toronto area to be selected,” said MacNevin.

“One of the first days, they hand out contact information for people from Joe Fresh within the executive team … it’s saving us so much time in terms of learning.”

The two entrepreneurs had a busy 2015, being a part of New York Fashion week last fall as well as being featured in media around the world.

“We forgot a bit about applying for this program,” said Reed.

“When we heard back from the we were shocked and surprised but just excited to have the opportunity to grow in another market.”

MacNevin moved to Toronto to participate in the program in September. Reed stayed in Fredericton to maintain their relationship with their home base, which they say have supported them from the beginning.

“We’ve received so much support from the Atlantic region. It’s fun to be back and forth but Fredericton is definitely home,” said Reed.

MacNevin says 2016 will be an even bigger year for the duo as they try to remain innovative and get their garments to more people.

“The clothing itself has a tag that tells you how to wash and take care of the garment, but they also have self care tags that tell you how to take care of yourself,” he said.

“It can do more than just look cool it can make you feel better.”