Michaela Davert (@FunsizedStyle) is a beauty and lifestyle creator. Her content focuses on makeup and fashion as well as discussing disability-related topics. Michaela’s merch not only supports her passion for creating videos, it also enables her community to contribute towards her life-changing medical procedures. Continue reading to learn more about Michaela and how merch has impacted her journey so far.
Creating a community
Michaela was born with Osteogenesis Imperfecta (Type III), which is a connective tissue disorder that causes a lack of effective collagen throughout the body. After discovering and falling in love with the beauty and lifestyle space on YouTube four years ago, she couldn’t find any young women with physical disabilities creating this type of content. It was at that moment that Michaela decided to put herself out there and be the first! Combining her passion for changing societal perceptions of disability with beauty and fashion, the FunsizedStyle channel was born.
I knew there had to be other women out there with physical disabilities with these same passions but are too afraid to put themselves out there. I wanted my channel to be an avenue to advocate for more diversity for young women with physical disabilities.
Since starting her channel, Michaela has built up a strong community across YouTube and Instagram and has been overwhelmed by the support and comradery she’s shared with followers.
It’s been a slow and steady growth but I definitely didn’t expect it to take off the way it has, nor the outpouring support from people around the world.
Choosing a channel logo
Creating designs that were true to herself and her passions was a top priority as well as finding a platform that could offer an end-to-end solution for selling online. The last thing she needed to deal with was the additional stress of order fulfillment and customer support. After discovering Teespring from other YouTube creators she follows, she decided to create a merch of her own.
I loved the ease of the platform and the variety of products and options available on Teespring. A huge factor for me is the fact that I don’t need to worry about shipping & production—it makes selling products online so much easier.
Michaela decided to create a channel logo as her first design using a graphic designer. Once her logo was ready she chose from 50+ products to create her a product collection and added them to a custom store.
“Since my channel is a space where I discuss such a wide variety of topics, I didn’t want my logo to represent any one specific avenue. I wanted it to be super simple. I started looking at simple logo inspiration and the color of the logo is my favorite! I’m not gifted in graphic design whatsoever so I hired my friend Erica Aschbacher to bring my vision to life!”
A selection of products from Michaela’s logo collection
When merch means more
Michaela has a range of health conditions caused by her lack of collagen—including severe scoliosis. Her scoliosis has worsened over the years and she needs to undergo a life-saving medical intervention.
“The curve in my spine is now to the point where if left unaddressed, in about 10 years or left, my doctors say that I would eventually suffocate myself. That being said, this is a longevity of life issue now and needs to be addressed with major medical intervention. In June I will be undergoing a procedure called halo traction where surgical pins will be put into my skull with a halo ring and then weight will be added to slowly stretch out my spine to make it easier to operate. 7 weeks later, I will be undergoing the spinal fusion which will take about 10-12 hours. This surgery is extremely risky but needs to be done to ensure I have a normal life expectancy”
After announcing this news on her platforms, Michaela received many messages from her community asking how they could support her. She was inspired and worked with graphic designer Julia Stathopoulos to create a new merch collection dedicated to scoliosis awareness, with funds from sales going towards the cost of her surgeries.
Creating a special merch design was the best tangible way that I could think of that my internet community could support me a little extra if they’d like!
Promotional best practices
Michaela’s community is keen to support her, so her goal is to let them know how! She follows promo best practices like sharing visual posts on Instagram and regularly mentions her merch in YouTube videos. Michaela says that her favorite part about selling merch is hearing from loyal supporters who love the unique designs and quality of the items they buy.
Examples of Michaela promoting her new design on Instagram
Thank you Michaela for sharing your story! Check out FunsizedStyle on YouTube and Instagram now.
Ready to create your own success story? Visit the Teespring Launcher to get started.
2 responses to “@FunsizedStyle: Changing perceptions of disability & creating new communities on YouTube”
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