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As Selma Blair calls for more accessible fashion, these are some of the people paving the way

‘You shouldn’t have to sacrifice style.’

LAST WEEKEND, AND for the first time since her diagnosis of MS last August, Selma Blair appeared at the biggest red carpet event of the year; the Academy Awards.

Wearing a Ralph & Russo tulle gown and carrying a custom-made cane, the 46-year-old actress epitomised grace, courage and dignity.

In the wake of the award ceremony, Selma told her Instagram followers that the appearance was ‘a moment that defined her’.

I felt the love from the photographers who have watched me goof around on red carpets since I was in my twenties. I felt the warmth of the bulbs. The strength of my gown… And I sobbed. And I appreciated every single second.

The response to Selma’s appearance was wholly positive.

In the days that have followed, Selma, a mother-of-one, has given interviews about her diagnosis, the impact it has had on her life, and her hopes for the future.

Speaking to Vanity Fair this week, the Cruel Intentions actress expressed interest in creating an accessible fashion line.

I would like to partner with someone like Christian Siriano on a line for everyone – not just people who necessarily need adaptive clothing, but for those who want comfort, too.

“It can still be chic. You shouldn’t have to sacrifice style. Like, let’s get elastic waistbands to look a little bit better,” she reasoned.

Selma is, of course, only the latest person to call for further adaptivity in fashion, so let’s take a look at the designers, brands and lines who have been paving the way in this regard.

Runway of Dreams

In an effort to accommodate her young son, who was diagnosed with muscular dystrophy, fashion designer Mindy Scheier created the Runway of Dreams Foundation, a non-profit organisation established in 2014.

Through adaptive clothing donations, employment opportunity initiatives, adaptive design workshops, awareness building campaigns and scholarships programs, the Runway of Dreams Foundation is empowering people with disabilities with opportunity, confidence, independence and style.


Last summer ASOS was the subject of much praise for its collaboration with BBC reporter, para-athlete and a wheelchair user, Chloe Ball-Hopkins.

Indeed, as adaptive fashion slowly but surely becomes more of a priority within the fashion industry, here are a few more flying the flag…

Nike Flyease

PastedImage-38711 Source: Nike FlyEase

IZ Adaptive

Tommy Adaptive at Tommy Hilfiger

Zappos Adaptive

Rebirth Garments 

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I would like to make a public announcement that even though I show very neon and bright colored/ patterned clothing in my fashion performances,  remember my work is *CUSTOMIZABLE* , so I can also make all black outfits as well! here is a photo of @esotericpisces by @ericbouwens Photography at @disart_now last year Image Description: Bri is wearing a severely textured all black look with silver details. On their head, a black anodized aluminum scalemaille headpiece with royal blue trims framing the face that makes noise as they walk. A low cut T-shirt with color blocking in different black textures: lace, 3 different geometric patterns of burnout velour, die cut neoprene, sheers, spandex, and holographic black. There is a moon detail in the back and cold shoulder lace cap sleeves. A racerfront singlet leggings with a cut outs on the upper thighs to reveal tattoos. Topped off with an assymetrical Metamaille necklace, which is what Sky coined the term for Chainmaille out of Chainmaille, in black and gunmetal with an O-ring and a double ended snap bolt closure and a chainmaille cuff bracelet with an O ring. Bri is sitting in a manual wheelchair, legs crossed and hands in her lap while looking at the camera. #disabledpeoplearehot #disabledandcute #disabilityfashion #wheelchairfashion #radicalvisibility #accessiblefashion #spandex #scalemaille #chainmaille #metamaille #imagedescription

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About the author:

Niamh McClelland

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