Young North Wales tennis player designs and creates athletic apparel brand

11-year-old Taelyn Kelsey Gray’s self-designed tennis apparel brand is inspired by her grandmother, who passed away from cancer.

Taelyn Gray holding the book she wrote

Taelyn Gray holding her self-written book "Grandma's Nuggets." (Courtesy of AOI PR and Events)

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Motivated by the love and encouragement from her Grandma Gray, 11-year-old Taelyn Gray chose to take her love for tennis and fashion and merge them into a business that lets her stand out and make the sport she loves a more enjoyable experience.

With her brand LOVE U BUNCHES (LUB), Taelyn brings affordable and comfortable tennis wear to her tennis peers.

Taelyn started playing tennis at 5 — inspired by legend Serena Williams — and fell in love after her first racket swing. She attended her first US Open in 2023, and got a chance to see the pros she looks to one day emulate.

“I think the sky is the limit for Tae. I’m really proud of her,” said Frank Green, Taelyn’s tennis coach, who sees nothing but endless potential in the young tennis player. “It’s really special to see someone at such a young age find a way to channel their creative energy in a positive way, into two things that she loves, which is tennis and fashion.”

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Coach Frank Green and Taelyn Gray
Coach Frank Green and Taelyn Gray, creator of Love U Brunches, at the practice tennis court in Pa. (Eric Nixon/WHYY News)

LOVE U BUNCHES,  defined as a premier junior girls’ tennis apparel brand dedicated to providing affordable, high-quality tennis practice clothing. The brand says it’s committed to inclusivity and aims to inspire girls to achieve greatness through passion, confidence, growth, and power.

Taelyn Gray playing tennis
Taelyn Gray at practice, sporting the “red rush” edition of her Love U Bunches Tennis Apparel. (Eric Nixon/WHYY News)

“At first I didn’t think she was being for real,” said Melanie Gray, Taelyn’s mother, recognizing that Tae was truly passionate about this project dedicated to her grandmother and her favorite saying, ‘Love You Bunches’. “Once she showed me the drawings, I thought, ‘Wow, she’s serious.’ So then I decided to go ahead and help her make her dream come true.”

Taelyn Gray playing tennis
Taelyn Gray at practice, sporting the “red rush” edition of her Love U Bunches Tennis Apparel. (Eric Nixon/WHYY News)

“Every color means something different,” said Taelyn as she describes the meaning behind some of the colors that the attire comes in. “The red rush means ‘passion’, the yellow yolk is ‘confidence’, the green glide is ‘growth’, and the black blaze is ‘inner power.’ “All those things you can use in your normal, everyday life and I wanted to share that with the rest of the world.”

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In addition to being a business owner and athlete, the young scholar is also an author. Taelyn’s first book, “Grandma’s Nuggets,” tells the story of a young tennis player named Tia, who struggles with self-esteem, but has her passion reignited after encouragement from her grandmother.

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