It probably seems unthinkable today, though when I first started pole dancing back in 2006, there was no such thing as pole wear. During class, we wore generic sports bras and cycling shorts, or if you were a broke college student like me, you simply wore “boy briefs” from Penney’s and an aul t-shirt rolled to the ribs up for a bit of skin grip… A lot of these were simply not fit for purpose when it came to going upside down, getting adequate skin grip or spreading your legs.
I am forever grateful that now there is an abundant pole wear industry internationally! There are so many choices when it comes to pole-appropriate clothing that suits your style and budget.
More importantly, there are now some absolutely excellent pole wear brands that are doing great work not only in providing clothing that is fit for purpose, but doing so in a way that’s ethical. There’s a lot to be said for brands that have heart and soul behind them.
Here at IPDA we recently made some new friends and we’re only delighted to tell you all about them: Queen Wear.
Queen Wear are a pole wear company based in Lviv, Ukraine, with an impressive collection of knee pads, pole-specific tops, shorts, bodysuits, leggings, harnesses, oh and socks! Their website is beautifully designed and easy to use: everything is priced in Euro and clearly categorised by type, style and purpose. The pricing is mid-range and, in my opinion, a good investment given that the quality is top notch and the items are absolutely fit for purpose.
The first thing that grabbed my attention about Queen Wear was the diversity of their products. Not only have they created a range of pole wear that caters for both a sexy and a sporty aesthetic, their range of knee pads are really very comprehensive! There’s currently 41 different knee pads to choose from (plus you can get extra inserts to customize the level of protection you’d like). This includes standard knee pads, grippy knee pads, coloured knee pads, as well as knee pads for different skin-tones; it’s honestly very impressive! Oh, and did I mention there are knee pads with cute cat ears? I can’t even!
I got some grippy knee pads to try out and I’m delighted to confirm that they are as good as they look. They are initially quite tight-fitting, but they accustom pretty quickly. They’re extremely comfortable; the padding feels very protective without feeling or looking bulky.
I also got some shorts to try out and I got a ‘Stay Wild’ top in red (you know how I can’t resist leopard print…). The clothing feels high quality and you can tell that it’s designed by fellow pole dancers; the crotch coverage on the shorts is perfect and I can confirm that the top is very effective at containing my ample bosom when I’m upside down: success!
If you’re considering purchasing from Queen Wear’s online store, here is a sweet 10% discount code that the lovely humans behind Queen Wear are offering to IPDA members and friends: IPDA10.
All of the Queen Wear items come in cute packaging with a printed note (in both Ukrainian and English) with a photo of the team that exudes personality and an explanation of Queen Wear’s values, one of which is “We are doing our best on the way of becoming a socially responsible brand to bring more happiness to your daily life and to make things worth your admiration”.
That’s definitely my favourite thing about this pole wear brand: Queen Wear are a bunch of very relatable humans who care about the same things that we do. They are not a faceless corporate brand. In buying their product you are supporting a small female-led business who really care about the products that they are making.
I also had an opportunity to chat with Victoria, the creator of Queen Wear, to learn more about the face behind the brand and what Queen Wear stands for:
Arlene: What inspired you to start your own brand Queen Wear?
Victoria: I consider the day of the creation October 5, 2015. That was the birthday of our first product – knee pads. At that moment I got an idea about making special knee pads for Pole Dance with multifunctional and technical support, as well as extremely beautiful.
As far as I am crazy and obsessed when it comes to any work I do, the same day (if to be more exact, that night) the first pair of knee pads was made: QUEEN.
I didn’t mean to create a brand, but I was focused on making an extremely useful and revolutionary product, which had never existed before. The very work with “QUEEN” as a brand started later in 2016. I can’t say that to make a brand was my decision, but in some moment I understood that my
knee pads had become a brand themselves, as many people tended to think like that. So, I just caught this idea and converted it into reality with the company of my supporters.
Further, working on our brand development became an obvious decision due to the motto ”if you’ve started doing something, just be the first in it”.
A: What is your mission with Queen Wear?
V: 1. Quality: If the quality is poor, there is no forgiveness for such a brand! That is a thing we’ve been always ruled with. So the quality is the main thing about our brand.
2. Inner comfort: We know our clients very well, as each of them is our supporter. We share many things in common. Pole dance is our passion, excitement and love. We care about these things, because we also know how to do it.
When you put on Queen you can relax, dance free and enjoy, as each item was created carefully with every single detail taken into thorough attention.
3. Emotions! The originality of each item gives a possibility to be yourself. It’s not about the design only, but about the atmosphere and idea put inside.
It’s more than clothes, it’s something that makes impressions, brings emotions and makes pole dance life brighter and manifold.
A: Tell us about what you hope to achieve for the future with your brand?
V: We dream that Queen will become a great social brand! That will bring quality ideas, solutions and changes to the world, a brand that will raise the level of happiness not only for our customers, but also for different women all over the world!
And once in 50 years, my team and I will look at this huge organization and we will be proud to be involved in the history of this brand.
A: We noticed that your branding and packaging is very friendly, authentic and warm; it tells us that Queen Wear cares a lot about their customers! Is the customer experience important to you?
V: Of course, Customers are the people for whom and thanks to whom we exist as a brand. By the way, for our whole team there is an internal rule, we always write ‘Customer’ with a capital letter, even in quick text messages with each other. A happy, satisfied Customer is our main value and in our opinion only brands with this positioning have the right to exist in future.
A: Can you tell us more about your environmentally friendly processes?
V: The responsible, environmentally friendly production of a circular economic model and an ethical brand are what we are working hard on right now! We have created our own environmental strategy until 2023, with the goal of creating a resistant socially responsible business model of the brand for our customers, the planet and humanity.
Among the key improvements we are now:
- Reducing production of waste by creating the new waste products. The goal is zero-waste production!
- Increasing the average expiration date of knee pads for 9 months, so we reduce its carbon influence by 30%.
- We are for reasonable consumption; right now we are testing a new service – ‘knee pad rental in pole dance studios’; in this way only those who need to protect their knees constantly will buy personal knee pads, this will reduce the amount of knee pads that are dusted somewhere in the lockers, and later fewer knee pads will end up in the trash.
A: What is your favourite thing about pole dancing?
V: A combination of strength and femininity, both visually and mentally! In our team there is 95% of women and we share common values – for us, “A strong woman who has decided to be happy” is a standard, an inspiration and a role model. And such women are our Customers!
A: What is your favourite pole dance movement / trick? And why?
V: The newest one 🙂 As soon as you master any element, for a while, it still becomes just a trick in the range of learnt elements, but there are always new, more difficult and interesting tricks, because they are still reach-less. And if not a specific element, but dance – not so much that which is technically “pure”, and one that tells a personal story and conveys emotion.
A: Lastly, what is your hope for the world and for the future?
V: We believe that the future is for women!
We love this digitalized world and learn to live and work more efficiently every day. If we create a hypothesis that artificial intelligence will continue to develop and spread actively, over time it will be massively present in our world and in the life of every person – and such qualities as emotions, feelings and love, will be the most valuable product in the world, and this is what we Women can…
I really enjoyed talking to Victoria of Queen Wear and getting to know a new brand of pole wear! I hope that you enjoy reading this blog and I certainly recommend heading over to their website to have a look at the full range of clothing and knee pads that they have on offer.
All of the relevant size charts can be found under the ‘Customer Info’ tab. Clothing sizes cater for XXS to XXL, and knee pad sizes cater for XS to XXL (hurrah!).
A final note: yes, Queen Wear do ship internationally and their approximate delivery terms are 2-3 weeks to Europe and about 3-4 weeks delivery to other continents.
And the best bit, your 10% discount code when ordering anything from Queen Wear’s online store is IPDA10.
Remember folks, support small business where you can ♥
– Arlene Caffrey