Claire started wearing a neck strap in 2014 after suffering from pain in her right wrist and arm. To alleviate the pain, she went through physical therapy and started wearing a neck strap. After wearing it for a couple weeks, the pain went way. She progressively stopped therapy but kept the neck strap. Since this day, Claire has never felt pain anymore playing the clarinet.
When Claire started wearing a neck strap, she felt insecure about wearing one. Indeed, the image of the neck strap in the clarinet community was bad. She recalls that at the time, only injured players would wear one. When she chose to keep wearing it after therapy, she received criticism. Therefore, one year later when she started her group Four Play Clarinet, Claire decided to feature herself playing with a neck strap in their first music video. Today, this video has been watched over 3 millions times all over the world.
Wearing a neck strap has made Claire's playing much easier. The weight of the instrument is not all put on the right thumb and wrist anymore. She enjoys moving more freely around the instrument and and noticed major improvements in the use of her right hand pinky. The clarinet was not originally designed for children's hands or adults with small hands and Claire's pain came directly from this issue. Claire, who's father is a doctor was from the beginning aware of the different issues but still felt hesitant to wear a neck strap in the long run.
In the last few years, Claire has seen more and more clarinetists wearing a neck strap, including some prominent figures. However, no business has really tried to make the neck strap both functional and beautiful, like a neck lace that could be worn with pride, a statement piece, a piece of art.
Therefore by lack of options, she teamed up with her brother Ghislain and worked on it for months before coming up with this great design. Her brother, Ghislain Grellier is a graduate of the CNSMdP de Paris in Dance and
UCLA in Choreography. While in his last years at the Paris Superior Conservatory, and because of his passion for design and choreography, he was taken under the wing of the CNSMdP Costume Designer and spent hours learning fashion design, sewing, and more. Ghislain works on the confection of each of these beautiful neck straps. Each neck strap is handmade from his home in Los Angeles.