Disabled and Fashionable: Stylish Adaptive Clothing Lines

I never heard the words fashion and disability together in a sentence when I was growing up in the 90s. I have always adored trendy clothing and accessories. I automatically picked the flashest and fanciest outfits every time my parents took me to a clothing store.  I was born to stand out, so I figured why not express it through my sense of style as well.

As I matured, I started realizing that none of my favorite fashion lines were making adaptive clothing. I wanted to be more independent,  but none of my favorite items were easy to put on by myself. I didn’t even try out the adaptive clothing my occupational therapists recommended. All of it lacked color, flair, and the ability to express my fabulous personality.  I already hated the fact that my leg braces (called AFOs) horribly clashed with my cute sneakers.

It was frustrating to feel like fashion designers didn’t think disabled individuals cared about looking fashionable. Forty million U.S. citizens have a disability, and over fourteen million of them have difficulty with dressing themselves. You would think fashion designers would’ve thought about that, but nope.

 It was not until 2014 that adapting clothing became newsworthy when both Tommy Hilfiger and Target created adaptive clothing lines that feature hidden Velcro and magnetic closures.  Mindy Scheier of Runway of Dreams & Maura Horton of Magna Ready collaborated with mainstream designer Tommy Hilfiger on a line of adaptive clothing called Tommy Adaptive. Their own loved one’s struggles with dressing themselves was the inspiration behind the line. 

Many other mainstream lines have become more diverse since then. Here are some of favorite lines and brands that have great adaptive features:

  • Tommy Adaptive
    • Target Audience: Wheelchair users and individuals with sensory limitations ((kids, women, and men)
    • Features:
      • Velcro closures
      • Hidden magnetic closures
      • No buttons
      • No zippers
    • Price range: $25-$300
    • Link: https://usa.tommy.com/en/tommy-adaptive
  • Under Armour
    • Target Audience: Individuals with sensory limitations (kids, women, and men)
    • Features:
      • Tagless
      • Sensory-friendly
      • Very soft
    • Price range: $25-$300
    • Link: https://www.underarmour.com
  • IZ Adaptive
    • Target Audience: Wheelchair users and individuals with sensory limitations (women and men)
    • Features:
      • Velcro closures
      • Hidden magnetic closures
      • No buttons
      • No zippers
    • Price range: $35-$800
    • Link: https://izadaptive.com
  • Reboundwear
    • Target audience: individuals who are post-surgical. (kids, women, and men)
    • Features:
      • Super soft
      • Sensory-friendly
      • Clinically accessible for treatments
      • Lightweight and antimicrobial
      • Minimal metallic components
    • Price range: $10-$100
    • Link: https://www.reboundwear.com/
  • Billy Footwear
    • Target Audience: Individuals who wear leg or foot braces (kids, women, and women)
    • Features:
      • Zip-on design
      • No lacing up
      • Cute colors
    • Price range: $35-$125
    • Link: https://billyfootwear.com

Don’t let your style disable by your limitations. Never stop expressing your uniqueness!

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