Image credit: Marc Lycett
The screen is dark and grained,
A set of hands writhe and wring, “She stretches but not too much”
Knuckles crack, toes curl, a hand runs over the spokes of a wheelchair - “Her armour, her exoskeleton”
We recently had the privilege of having a piece of our jewellery featured in Army, a short film created by Little Peaches, an Australian dancer, founder of the sellout international cabaret DisibiliTease, and recently voted one of the most influential burlesque performers in the world.
So who is Little Peaches?
From the tropical rainforests of Australia, Little Peaches found her small city couldn’t meet her ambitions, so she jumped on a plane and settled in the UK, determined to take on the burlesque world!
A few years later, Little Peaches was struck down with Ehlers Danlos Syndrome, making it excruciatingly painful to move. Being the renegade stripper that she is, she was determined to dance again, so she dedicated months to retraining and developing a whole new style of burlesque from her wheelchair.
Since then, Little Peaches has been booked worldwide as a burlesque performer and has co-produced The Secret Circus and produced the international sell-out shows and The original DisabiliTease.
Image credit: Marc Lycett
Little Peaches, who was named among the top 50 most influential burlesque performers in the world, creates acts that tell stories and shines a light on experiences people with disabilities face.
Her debut act in her wheelchair, Warrior, shows the strength and power that people with disabilities have to gather each day to live in a society that isn’t built for them. It has been booked in 7 different countries to date, including The Burlesque Hall of Fame.
Her next act, Reborn, shares her vulnerability by recounting her experience of being told she wasn’t enough and that because of her disabilities, she was “broken”.
Through her art, Little Peaches was determined to show that she and others who experience the same story are more than enough: they are worthy of all the rights and love that a more able-bodied person receives.
Image credit: Marc Lycett
"She’s queer, she’s disabled, she’s opiniated and she refuses to follow doctors’ orders. Little Peaches will break your heart, tell stories it holds, whip you into shape and prove that people with disabilities are worthy."
The DisibiliTease Communtiy
As a side project to the show, Peaches teamed up with friend and performer Arille Firecracker to create the DisibiliTease support group and community.
Image credit: AB Photography
“It’s a community Arielle and I started solely for people with disabilities. It's a group for people with disabilities (whether they are visible or invisible, diagnosed or undiagnosed), a safe space where they are able to be vulnerable and supportive with each other.
We have group video chats each week where we just hang out and cha, people from across the globe join in. We usually spend the time laughing.
It's really fun and so comforting knowing we are amongst people who understand. Knowing it's a safe space people feel comfortable to share their experiences with each other. There is always someone who is able to help. It's a place where we can all relate, feel validated and know there's an army behind us who have our backs.” - Little Peaches
Army - A short film about strength, beauty and vulnerability
The film Army was created for The Toots and Leigh Show, a digital version of their Manchester-based burlesque show that aired in December 2020.
“The film was inspired by the DisibiliTease community. The imagery is supposed to represent strength, beauty and vulnerability. Everyone involved experiences chronic pain. Unfortunately no one can see that pain. This was supposed to be a gentle reminder that we are here and that under all the glitter, it's okay to not be okay.” - Little Peaches
So in a world that is not built for people with disabilities, what can small brands like mine do to become more inclusive?
“It's really important to show clothing from different angles. It's hard to buy clothing if we don't know what it's going to look like sitting down. Another thing that would be amazing is if companies would state if the garments have zippers, buttons, clasps, Velcro, hooks and eyes. Because these things are helpful to know for dexterity problems. If we don't know if we can do the garments up ourselves, it is trial and error.
Also putting an image description on your social media posts is super important! If you want to sell your stock to people with visual impairments they need to know what they are buying.
Camel text is also great for socials, it means that people with visual impairments can read the hashtags. For example #ForageDesign having capitals before each world means that programs that read out the text can recognise the words.” - Little Peaches
Little peaches offers a paid service giving advice to brands and companies about how to make their websites, socials and products more accessible.
If you have a disability, whether they are visible or invisible, diagnosed or undiagnosed join the DisibiliTease community
Little peaches - https://www.instagram.com/littlepeachesburlesque/
In the film, Little Peaches is wearing our Feather & Moonstone Ear Cuff
View our full collection of ethically produced, bohemian jewellery