On a recent afternoon at the Royal Ontario Museum, Alexandra Palmer, the ROM’s senior curator in textiles and costumes, perused her newly installed exhibition, taking note of some its particular challenges.Canadian fashions for people in wheelchairs a focal point in new museum exhibit
“We had to get custom mannequins,” she said, tut-tuttingly. “Shop mannequins sit in all kinds of ridiculous positions. They don’t sit, well, like that, do they?”
That, in this case, being the most innocuous, normal, bent-legged kind of way, which, it so happens, is also the position in which the vast majority of mobility-challenged people find themselves virtually all of their waking hours.
To help further illuminate how the items are customized for individuals in wheelchairs, a selection of the Toronto-based designer's works are displayed in both seated and standing positions. A classic trench coat is drafted in an L-shape following the line of the body while seated, while a formal suit features added length to the back and less in the front body area to accommodate the wearer.Exhibition — Fashion Follows Form: Designs for Sitting
What is perhaps the most surprising aspect of this exhibit is how very attractive and fashion-forward adaptive clothing can be. Designed with a seated person in mind and offering ease of access with openings at the back, these garments are not simply functional, they are chic. I wouldn’t hesitate to wear them myself, especially the stunning separating leather jacket or the denim maxi skirt.Via blogger Dave Hingsburger, who wrote about the exhibit in this post.
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