Tommy Hilfiger has released a collection for people with disabilities

Nathan Siegel

Building off of the success of their children’s clothing line for those with disabilities, PVH Corp, the mother company of the Tommy Hilfiger brand, has announced that a full line of Hilfiger clothes for those who are “differently-abled” will be released in November.

The line, branded Tommy Adaptive, will be complete with shirts, jackets, pants, jackets, sweaters, and dresses with magnets and Velcro instead of zippers and buttons to make the everyday process of getting dressed easier. The pant legs on the new items will be wider to accommodate braces and casts, and the necklines will be larger for people to put on with limited arm capabilities. Hilfiger’s recently-expanded children’s line has over fifty items for children which uses elastic, pull-on loops, and other alternatives that make the clothing more accessible to kids, and will be joined by over sixty new adult styles for men and women.

The line is a joint venture between PVH and Runway of Dreams, a nonprofit organization founded in 2014 by Mindy Scheier, a fashion designer whose son was born with muscular dystrophy, making it difficult for him to wear jeans to school. With her empowering organization, Scheier promotes clothing and initiatives for “differently-abled” children.

Speech and Communication Disorders sophomore Jamie Rizzo is excited for the spotlight that the clothing line will bring to the disabled community. “I’m really glad that clothing lines are trying to become more inclusive,” she said, “Hopefully these clothing items will be able to generate more discussion about accurate depictions of living with a disability, whether it is a visible disability or not.”

In an industry where looks mean everything, the fashion world has notably improved their standards of beauty with pushes for plus size models, no airbrushing, and racial inclusivity, and Tommy Adaptive is another step in the right direction. In 2016, Angela Luna won the prestigious title of Parson Designer of the Year for her adaptive line. In March of last year, Beyoncé’s official merch website featured a disabled model, and this year, designer Derek Lam mentored FIT, Parsons, and Pratt students to create clothing for those suffering from cerebral palsy. While the fashion industry still has a ways to come in regards to recognizing and highlighting those who have disabilities, companies like PVH are taking the initiative and giving differently-abled fashionistas a few more options.

Tommy_Hilfiger_Kunstakademiets_Designskole_5_2010-6Kunstakademiets / Flickr