Anita Iyer founder in Ekansh Trust(Rahul Raut/HT PHOTO)
Anita Iyer founder in Ekansh Trust(Rahul Raut/HT PHOTO)

Pune’s EKansh Trust to conduct contest in designing clothing for people with disabilities

The concept is to sensitise budding designers of the difficulties persons with different disabilities have with independent dressing
Hindustan Times, Pune | By HT Correspondent
UPDATED ON JAN 22, 2019 04:59 PM IST

Having run contests for students of architecture, Anita Iyer Narayan, founder and managing trustee, EKansh Trust has now announced in designing adaptive clothing for people with disabilities. 

On the concept, Anita shared, “We had run contests for students of architecture earlier. Design impacts our lives. Everything that is not natural is designed by us, and we seem to be oblivious to the needs that are not typical. Fashion design students too have to be sensitised and be able to think out of the box.”

Anita added that there are pageants featuring women and men on wheelchairs where safety pins and quick tucks are used as a norm to make conventional clothing fit. She said, “The clothes are not designed specifically for them. People with visual challenges find it difficult to pick clothes according to colour and style. Someone with Parkinson’s would find buttoning up a tough task. A person with mental challenges may also find conventional designs hard to handle.”

The clothes will be showcased and not sold. Anita added, “The mentor will judge the outfits. We will ask for videos at the end of the contest to judge, and get the mentor to model the dress and tell us what adaptations were made. The most imaginative and most effective will win.” The competition dates will be announced soon. 

About a competition

Each team will have five participants :

One mentor with a disability that gets in the way of independent choosing of clothes and dressing up. 

It could be someone who is a wheelchair user, visually challenged, with obesity or a senior citizen whose mobility is compromised by age-related conditions.

1 mentor, 1 design expert, 3 students of garment/fashion design

What is adaptive clothing?

Adaptive clothing means designs that are easy to adapt for someone who has special needs. Flexible clothing, for example, elastic waistbands, velcro instead of lace or buttons….very simple yet effective solutions used imaginatively would mean superb adaptive design.

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