Fashion for children with disabilities

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Written by Tim Barnes-Clay

How can fashion can be more inclusive for children with disabilities?

It’s important for the needs of kids with disabilities be taken into consideration. Especially for something as important as clothing. Here’s just a few great examples from the fashion world of how clothing can be made more inclusive.

Braille patches

Gracie Benedith-Cane created Braille Code Inc. Her 11 year old son is legally blind. Inspired by him, not only has she written a children’s book to raise awareness for braille, but has also contributed to kid’s fashion. She has designed patches with Braille on them. These patches can be sewn to children’s clothing. For example, labels to put on the inside of shoes to say which is left or right, or on socks to say front from back.

Myself belts

Myself belts were created by Talia Goldfarb. Designed to be fastened and unfastened with one hand, they were originally intended to help kids in potty training. However, it soon came apparent their benefit for kids with disabilities like Down syndrome and autistic spectrum disorders.

Tommy Hilfiger

Back in 2016, Tommy Hilfiger launched the first ever adaptive designer clothing line for children with disabilities. It was a collaboration with Runway of Dreams. The success of this clothing mean that a year later, they expanded their selection to have adaptive clothes for adults too. They include features such as magnetic buttons, adjustable hems and Velcro closures.

Disabled models

Fashion can also be more inclusive by showing children that disabled people can be models. River Island recently featured 8-year-old model Daisy-May Demetre in their RI ACTIVE range for girlswear. Demetre had her legs amputated at 18 months after being diagnosed with fibular hemimelia. This hasn’t set her back though. Demetre was signed to a modelling agency in 2017 and even walked in London Fashion week this year.