Student takes inspiration from 1970s for Cerebral Palsy collection



A Heriot-Watt fashion student has taken inspiration from the 1970s to create cutting-edge clothing for people with Cerebral Palsy.

Laura Reid's collection, features adaptations for people with the disability whilst being on-trend for the mainstream market.

The student took her inspiration from a book written four decades ago, which reveals clothing for people with disabilities was either designed for the very young or elderly.

After speaking to Bobath Scotland – a charity which supports people living with Cerebral Palsy – Laura worked with a focus group to get ideas and set about designing a trailblazing collection.

The clothes feature adaptations such as removable sleeves, elasticated waists and magnetic closures – proving that clothing and style do not need to be compromised due to a disability.

Now, the collection is due to feature in a degree show exhibition at Heriot-Watt University's School of Textile and Design in Galashiels.

Laura Reid said: “Currently, the options for young adults are limited, with many brands not focusing on the younger adult market and not being financially viable due to the niche market.

“I wanted to design a collection which was suitable for my age group - for both the mainstream market and people with Cerebral Palsy.

“Aesthetically, the collection has followed a colour scheme of dark blues and forest greens, preventing the collection from appearing childish, with pops of orange as well as gold and rose gold foil to add an element of fun and remind the wearers they are still young.

“Garments can be interchanged to suit the style of the wearer and create looks to suit different occasions.

“I'm very proud of the collection and highlighting an important issue within the fashion industry.”

Stephanie Fraser, CEO of Bobath Scotland, said: “At Bobath Scotland, we support people with Cerebral Palsy in a range of ways, including providing specialist therapy for children and adults across the country.  

“We regularly work with people living with Cerebral Palsy to develop life skills that increase independence. Dressing as independently as possible is a big part of that.

“In December we were very happy to bring Laura together with a group of young adults with Cerebral Palsy to discuss some of the ways that clothing could be made more accessible and enable independent dressing, but still be fashion-forward.

“We wish Laura all the best with her fabulous collection, and hope that it highlights to the industry that accessible can also be fashionable.”

For media enquiries contact:

Laura Varney

Communications Officer

Heriot-Watt University

Edinburgh, EH14 4AS

Tel: 0131 451 3242