Limited Edition 'Lette' T-shirt - Design Collaboration

New limited edition 'Lette' t-shirt is now available to pre-order! Designed by award winning eco friendly clothing brand Joined in Life (JIL) the design features Jane's original blue Biro drawing, which celebrates the work of inspirational organisation Mary's Meals, JIL's charity partner.  


Made from the finest 100% organic cotton this high quality, sustainable product is digitally printed using water based ink. As JIL donate 10% of their clothing sales to Mary's Meals, it was decided the t-shirt design should highlight the integral work of MM's food programme, which provides one hot meal a day at school to over 1 million impoverished children across the globe. 20% of Lette t-shirt sales will be donated to Mary’s Meals.

Lette and Child 31
The artwork for the t-shirt design conveys a message of hope and reflects the aspirations of children who wish to follow their dreams and are given the opportunity of a brighter future for themselves, their families and their community through the work of MM's.  As well as featuring symbols of education and the origins of MM's in Malawi, Jane also created a quote to use as the founding inspiration for the artwork - every child is a star that shines more brightly when provided with food, an education and hope.
“Initially I was looking for a child to feature in my Biro drawing who had been helped by Mary’s Meals and whose eyes and demeanour spoke of their life experience. With so many images of amazing children to look through, it was hard to make a final decision of which child to portray. Eventually I found an image of a beautiful little girl featured in a page banner on MM’s website. I set about trying to find out who she was and hopefully find further images to work from, in order to bring her portrait to life. However it proved virtually impossible to locate her, as MM’s have helped so many children.

My working method involves taking photographs of television screens as films play. This not only helps create inspirational images to work from but also gives a cinematic quality to the drawings. Having purchased a DVD of MM’s film Child 31 to photograph, I began to watch the film and suddenly spotted the girl I had been searching for! Lette, an orphan from Malawi was 12 years old when Child 31 was filmed. Her grief over the loss of her parents, the anguish she felt at being left to care for her two younger brothers and the hunger pains they all suffered was incomprehensible. Equally, Lette’s grace, beauty and devotion to her siblings, was humbling. In Child 31 she explains she wants to be a nurse and through MM's Malawi program the family were not only receiving a daily hot meal in school but also the education she so clearly relished. In creating the portrait of Lette and highlighting one little girl’s inspirational story, my aim was to illustrate hope, given to every child Mary’s Meals reaches.”

Fabric painting of imagery to use as inspiration for drawing layers

Symbolism and Mary's Meals

Magnus McFarlane – Barrow founded Mary’s Meals in 2002, following a trip to Malawi providing famine relief. Depicting flora and fauna of Malawi within some of the drawing layers of the artwork, symbolises MM's origins and Lette’s heritage. National emblems of Malawi such as Thomson’s gazelles and lotus flowers are also featured. The inclusion of a giraffe was inspired by a child’s painting, which hung on the wall in Lette’s family home. Leopards and African painted dogs symbolise hunger as an ever-present stalking predator. Gazelle’s galloping through the piece symbolise freedom and the exhilaration of experiencing a brighter future, through education. Jane made a wildlife fabric painting as inspiration for the drawing layers within the artwork, which also celebrates Africa’s rich culture of painting and batik fabric making.  Lette’s youngest brother is also featured, carried on her back. This highlights the catastrophe of many orphaned children across the globe, forced to care for their siblings. A feint layer of children in school uniform with a layer of letters and numerals symbolises education. Finally the drawing portrays a fairy tale quality as if giving Lette rest-bite from being a carer and allowing her to be the child she is and dream of things little girls dream of.

Pre-order limited edition 'Lette' T-shirt here

For further information about the incredible work of Mary's Meals visit

Leave a comment

Please note, comments must be approved before they are published