Good or bad, first impressions are everything. We are a visual society and as a result snap judgement are made on one’s appearance. Our grooming and style of dress all goes into that first impression. For people with disabilities, arguably, first impressions are even more important. Here’s why I say that, as a person with a disability myself, I am constantly having to get people to see me for who I am and not to judge me on the basis of my wheelchair or speech impairment. As a dad with cerebral palsy, I’m very conscious of how I dress. I want our son to see that I take pride in my appearance and therefore he should take pride in his appearance. Not to mention, I want to be the cool dad! Not just for my wheels or cool van with a ramp!
I’ve never been one to wear button down shirts. Simply, because I have never had the manual dexterity to manipulate the buttons or the ability to iron. That all changed when I teamed up with Zappos Adaptive!
Zappos Adaptive is a department within Zappos.com. The cool thing about Zappos Adaptive is that everything in that department is disability friendly! Wheelchair jeans and slacks, magnetic clothing, and easy-on shoes just to highlight a few areas! Zappos Adaptive sent me some clothes and shoes from Tommy Hilfiger, Sketchers, and a brand I never heard of until now Magna Ready. A couple of years ago I wrote about some wheelchair jeans by ABL Denim. Zappos Adaptive brings all the various accessible fashion brands in to one place!
I was sent a dress shirt by Tommy Hilfiger. I have never seen this before, but the buttons had magnets behind them and magnets on the opposite side to create a magnetic closure! GENIUS idea for people like myself who have manual dexterity difficulties. I like the look of the shirt and the ease of putting it on. However, I did find some “buyer beware” issues with the shirt. That I feel I should pass on to you. The packaging was a little difficult to open. The top 2 buttons, which are not magnetic, arrived buttoned which caused me to ask for help. Which was a little confusing because the whole idea behind the magnetic buttons is to assist people who aren’t able to manipulate buttons.
The wash and care of the Tommy Hilfiger shirt does have difficulties. Because the shirt has magnets and the shirt itself is lightweight, it will stick to the side of the washer and dryer if you wash the shirt by itself. The shirt is a 100% cotton and as a result the shirt comes out of the dryer wrinkled. As a person with manual dexterity difficulties ironing is not an option. Even if ironing was an option – wouldn’t the magnets stick to iron and cause the shirt to possibly burn? Ah, but I found a solution to those pesky wrinkles – Downy Wrinkle Releaser! After the shirt comes out of the dryer put it on a hanger and then spray the entire shirt with the Downy Wrinkle Releaser until the shirt is damp. As the shirt is dries the wrinkles fall out and you will have a wrinkle free shirt!
Zappos Adaptive sent me a pair of the Magna Ready dress slacks. I really like the pants – A LOT! The best way to describe the pants is that the zipper-fly area is 4 magnets instead of a zipper. The waist button has Velcro behind the button as to create a Velcro closure! Although these pants aren’t cut for the wheelchair user. As a wheelchair user, I found the stretchable waist very beneficial while tucking in my shirt in a seated position. I reached out to Magna Ready via Twitter and I was pleased to learn they are in the process of developing pants with a wheelchair cut!
In full-disclosure, this is a sponsored post. However, I liked the Magna-Ready pants so much that their button-down shirts sparked my interest. My curiosity got the best of me … so I ordered a couple. Much like the pants, the shirts did not disappoint! There are 2 areas where the Magna-Ready shirts picked up where the Tommy Hilfiger shirts left off. The Magna-Ready shirts are made from a wrinkle resistant fabric. As a result, the shirts wash and dry much better and require much less care as far as wrinkles. Another feature about the Magna-Ready shirts that I really like is that the magnetic closure goes all the way up to include the neck button to make wearing a tie much easier.
The Skechers Equalizer Double Play are a great shoe! They are extremely easy to get on and off and because of subtle mesh material on the top gives the shoe a little give. The shoes are casual enough to be your everyday shoe yet a hint of professionalism to be entirely appropriate for the office! They are light weight! As a result, you don’t feel as though you have a lot of weight on your feet as you are sitting in your wheelchair. Oh, did I mention they are machine washable!
I love Zappos Adaptive, it’s a disability clothing mall without the stereo-typical disability feel! Zappos Adaptive is part of the Zappos.com family you will get excellent customer service via online live chat and free shipping!