Residents donate funds to help those affected by Hurricane Maria

What began as a way for people to take pride in the country their families hail from has turned into a way for two Shelton sisters to help support those affected by Hurricane Maria in Puerto Rico.

Patricia and Anna Lakomy of Shelton are both Polish-Americans who take pride in their family’s heritage. So much so that they designed a shirt to fashionably display their love for their Polish roots.

Subsequently, the Lakomy sisters’ T-shirt line, called “Apolonia International” was created.

The brand’s first popular design consisted of red and white lips printed on a variety of colored shirts and hoodies. The design gained attention among the Lakomy sisters’ group of friends.

“We came up with the lip design to do something low-key, youthful and fun,” said Patricia. “It worked because Poland’s flag is red and white.”

“Our friends immediately began to request that we make shirts with their colors on it,” said Anna. “We ordered the shirts for ourselves, and our other Polish-American friends all loved it. From there, they began to get jealous and ask why we hadn’t made an Italian or Peruvian lip design yet.”

In an effort to cater to their patriotic friends, the Lakomy sisters considered their feedback and created the same lip design, but in French, German, Spanish, Colombian, Peruvian, Ukranian, Irish, Italian, and Japanese colorways.

In the midst of creating the newer shirts, the sisters said they were approached to create shirts for a fund-raiser at a restaurant called La Pulperia in New York to support the people affected by the earthquake in Mexico.

“That was a ‘speed job.’ Literally, on Sunday they said they needed the shirts printed for their staff and we had to design and order them in the same week,” said Anna.

The person who organized the fund-raiser to support those affected by the earthquake contacted the Lakomy sisters again after raising more than $1,000 that he intends to personally deliver to a family in Mexico. When he contacted the Lakomy sisters the second time, he informed them that he wanted them to create another design, but this time it was to show support for those affected by Hurricane Maria in Puerto Rico.

Anna and Patricia immediately agreed and said they would donate $5 from every $22 shirt they sold for the cause.

The owner of La Pulperia said the proceeds from the fund-raiser will go to, which is world-renowned Puerto Rican singer Ricky Martin's organization for hurricane relief.

“We’re really grateful that we can use our designs to help others to show their love and support for other countries such as Mexico and Puerto Rico in the wake of the natural disasters,” said Anna.

To keep up to date with the brand’s latest releases, visit Apoloniainternational on Instagram or contact it at to place your order.