Autumn/Winter Fashion 2015 by Sarah Willow

By September 2, 2015Disability, Lifestyle, My story
Sarah Willow

Let me just put this out there, if it was acceptable to leave the house in my pyjamas I would totally be doing that. The pyjama life is what I’m all about. However, as it’s distasteful for a 28 year old woman to wheel around Asda in a Spider-Man onesie, clothes are the next best thing.

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, I’m a winter baby so I’m glad the warmer months are over, not that the UK benefitted from a scorching month or even week but still, Autumn is just around the corner and I can happily go back to my chunky knits, bobble hats and biker boots.

I’m not really one to follow suit, I like black clothes, black bags, black shoes, black makes my inner Goth very happy. So, I was extremely pleased when I saw that Gothic Romance would be a fashion trend this A/W. Lace, high-necklines, black (did I mention black is my favourite colour?) vampy, sexiness and berry lipstick – if I could get on my hands and knees I would totally be bowing to the glory of this trend. The downside is long lace dresses or skirts – surely you’re going to freeze to death? I can’t regulate my temperature as it is and I’m always cold wheeling about in my chair so I doubt thin lace is going to be the warmest. I’ve also seen pictures of ruffled cuffs and it looked stunning on the model but put her in a self-propelling wheelchair and ask her not to tangled up in the spokes – she’d have to be a miracle worker. I can’t even wear those cute bobbly gloves without a disaster. And don’t get me started on wheeling in the rain.

There’s also going to be a throwback to the 80s, with shoulder pads, ruffles and lycra – I somehow think I’ll be steering clear of this one. I wouldn’t mind a structured shoulder on a blazer but I don’t think I’ll be going anywhere near lycra. I do suppose lycra would be perfect for a wheelchair user, there is literally no way your clothing could get caught on anything as you’ve had to practically spray-paint your outfit on.

You might also see capes on the high street this Fall, but they certainly won’t be on my back, I’m short and will look like I’m wearing a tent, a tent on wheels, not a good look. The difficult thing about dressing for your wheelchair is working out how clothing will look in a seated position. A cape would look great on a non-wheelchair user, it’d sit at the hip and they’d look like they walked off a Parisian catwalk; on a wheelchair user, it’d need to be tucked into the sides of the chair as not to get twisted up in the wheels and then as you’re wheeling yourself, the sides would unfurl and it’d be a whole lot of messing. If you take away one word of advice from this post – don’t wear a cape if you’re a wheelchair user. I’m envisioning it and it’s not pretty.

Lucky for me knitted dresses, cardigans and jumpers will always be a staple in the colder months. I’m a fan of a hooded Parka coat, a long one that can be tucked under my bum and cause no catastrophic entangling moments whilst keeping me warm, a chunky scarf that isn’t ridiculously long and shoved inside my coat, with straight/skinny jeans (you can never go wrong, I’ll sometimes wear tights underneath for extra warmth), and ankle boots. I think I’ll probably invest in a cute blanket this year as it gets really cold sitting in a wheelchair, and you can never have too many hats or gloves. I recommend leather gloves with a thermal lining, that way if you are caught out in the rain, your woolly gloves won’t soak up the rain and freeze your hands, the rain will slide right off the leather. I’ve recently invested in a fedora because I’m a fan of a statement hat, the only downside is wind, I can’t push myself and hold onto my hat unless I enjoy going round in circles, which I don’t. Chunky bobble hats, knitted beanies and the like will always be in fashion and keep your head warm. I tend to wear them pulled down over my ears and the hood of my coat over the top.

As a wheelchair user, there’s certain items of clothing that are simply a no-go area, no matter how pretty they are or how amazing you’d look, there’s absolutely no way you could pull off fringed clothing – well, you could pull it off, but you’d be pulling it off when it got caught in your wheels and ripped from your body. That wouldn’t look good, now would it?

You can always keep up with the latest fashion trend as long as you consider how the clothing will sit/fit once you’re in your chair. You don’t want to pay a fortune for that gorgeous cape but wear it in your wheelchair and rip a hole in it.

And remember, you’re not moving about as much so it’s always colder when in a wheelchair, stay wrapped up!

What will you be wearing this Autumn/Winter?

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