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Our friends at Lock & Co have been working with military charity Style for Soldiers, supporting founder Emma Willis in supplying quality clothing, hats and shoes to medically discharged servicemen and women. Lock & Co were kind enough to invite us to a private viewing of the charities exhibition Art in the Aftermath. The exhibition showcases a range of art, poetry and films by former servicemen suffering from PTSD or brain injury.

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Self-portrait by Lt. Col (Retd) Stewart Hill

Style for Soldiers was founded in 2008 by shirt maker Emma Willis in response to numerous casualties incurred in Iraq and Afghanistan. She began visiting patients at the Military Rehabilitation Hospital, measuring them for a bespoke shirt as a gift to them for their bravery and sacrifice. As Emma worked with the soldiers, she realised the transformative effect having well-fitting clothes had on both the patient’s confidence and morale.

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Lustful Ruminations by Lt. Col (Retd) Martin Wade

Creativity has also been found to have transformative powers, with many servicemen and women turning to art, poetry and film during their rehabilitation. Creative work allows patients to express themselves in ways that they otherwise struggle and is a vital part of their healing process. Style for Soldiers has been supporting four soldier artists for the past year, removing financial pressures and allowing them to develop their art.

During the private exhibition, the artists spoke openly about PTSD and coping with life-changing physical injuries. Hearing their stories and inspirations behind their work was an incredibly moving experience.

Emma Willis and the Soldier Artists will be at La Galleria until the 18th of November. You can find out more about the charity and the artists taking part here.

Additionally, you can read about how clothing had a transformative effect on the soldiers here.

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