Fashion continues to be an industry of innovation and change, but when it comes to advancements in design for individuals with disabilities, things have remained relatively stagnant over the past few years. A quick Google image search for adaptive clothing is proof of how little has been done. Functional, sure, but most of the clothing on offer just doesn’t live up to what we see on runways or in magazines.
Universal Design (UD) is an approach to design that increases the potential for developing a better quality of life for a wide range of individuals. It is a design process that enables and empowers a diverse population by improving human performance, health and wellness, and social participation (Steinfeld and Maisel, 2012). It creates products, systems, and environments to be as usable as possible by as many people as possible regardless of age, ability or situation.