Wheelchair Fashion ~ Tips & Tricks

Transcript

0:01
[Upbeat Music]
0:04
Hi Everyone! 65PinkRoses here! 🙂
0:06
I got a lot of positive response on my tumblr,
0:10
because of a picture I posted
0:11
of me in my wheelchair
0:13
and subsequently I got a lot of questions & comments
0:16
about my style, my chair, and how to
0:18
maintain a sense of personal style
0:20
in a chair without sacrificing function and mobility
0:23
so I thought I’d make a video talking about just that!
0:27
First let me introduce you to my chair
0:29
I use a Helio C2
0:31
an ultra-lightweight chair made of carbon fiber
0:35
Helio is a Canadian company, and as I am Canadian
0:37
I felt that it was a perfect fit
0:39
Its inside width it 14 inches and
0:42
is 25 inches from wheel to wheel
0:46
It has standard sized wheels
0:48
removable arm rests and side guards
0:50
[sound of arm rests lifting]
0:51
and a single foot plate
0:52
[looks at footplate]
0:54
Thankfully, my chair is pink which is my favourite colour
0:58
And features a lovely design made by
1:01
my cousin, that’s painted on the left wheel
1:03
she’s going to do the right wheel over Christmas (break)
1:05
😀
1:06
So in my own experience I haven’t found
1:08
dressing for a wheelchair to be
1:09
very different from dressing for standing up.
1:11
Except for the fact that you’re sitting down
1:14
most of the time.
1:15
So while you top half is mostly unaffected,
1:17
what you wear on your legs will change
1:20
by the fact that you’re sitting down.
1:23
So while a short skirt or short shorts
1:25
might look good when you’re standing up
1:26
when you’re in a chair they’re going to go up
1:28
by a few centimeters and may not always look
1:30
as flattering as they do when/if you’re standing up
1:33
and walking.
1:33
So I’ve found that long pants, maxi skirt, or even
1:36
a skirt that goes below your knees
1:39
looks better in a chair because
1:41
while it may go up a few centimeters
1:42
it won’t ruin the affect that a pant or maxi skirt has
1:46
while being worn standing up.
1:47
And it also has the added benefit of
1:50
making your body look elongated and still making you
1:53
look tall, even though you’re sitting down
1:55
and are at a lower level than everyone else
1:58
So when I know that I am going to using my chair
2:00
more than I’m going to be standing up and walking
2:02
with crutches.
2:03
I usually plan to wear a maxi dress with a sweater
2:08
or pants with a nice top
2:10
or even just a skirt that goes below my knees
2:13
with some tights.
2:14
Now moving on to accessories! And more specifically:
2:17
bags and purses.
2:19
Using a wheelchair kind of takes away from your
2:21
ability to sling things over your should or put things
2:23
on your back, or just hold things in your arms
2:25
because you do need to push, you need to be able to
2:28
move your chair without a bag flinging around
2:31
what I find works best is: having a small backpack
2:34
that isn’t larger that the width of your chair so that
2:37
things aren’t hitting the side or getting caught
2:39
in your wheels.
2:40
The only word of caution I would give with a backpack
2:42
it that it’s easier for people to just open your
2:45
backpack in the back and take things out
2:47
So what I would recommend is having a small cross-body
2:51
pouch to keep your essential like your phone, I.D. and
2:55
small amounts of medication, things like that
2:58
in the front, so that people can’t take them as easy
3:01
If you don’t like using a backpack, I find that
3:03
using a nice cross-body bag that you can
3:04
keep in your lap works quite effectively.
3:07
You can still use handheld purses that you word
3:11
use normally over your shoulder or on you elbow
3:15
just so long as they have flat bottoms
3:17
and can stay in your lap without the fear
3:20
of it falling off or moving back and forth
3:23
in a way that hurts you.
3:24
So moving on from bags to shoes!
3:27
One benefit of sitting down all the time is
3:30
that you can wear high heels without
3:32
hurting your feet or your back.
3:34
What I find works best is resting the edges of your
3:37
heels off the end of your footplate.
3:40
Because if you rest the ends of your heels on top
3:44
of your footplate, you’re giving yourself bad posture
3:47
and ruining the alignment of you between your wheels
3:49
and the rest of your chair.
3:51
I have found that wearing heels in your chair can be very
3:55
flattering, but it can be tiring if you have to keep them
3:58
off the edge of your footplate all the time.
4:01
And if you don’t have mobility in your legs
4:03
this can be difficult without something behind your legs
4:07
to put them in the proper position
4:11
So I also enjoy wearing flats or any flats shoes/runners
4:15
that are comfortable and I can use if I do need to get up
4:18
from my chair.
4:19
Your legs do get a lot of attention while in a chair
4:22
people will often take a cursory glance of your legs
4:25
and so you feet are “on display” on top of your
4:28
footplate, so I often try to wear something that matches
4:30
my outfit and that just is a cute shoe, because people are
4:33
going to see it more than they would if you’re just walking
4:36
around.
4:36
Moving around in a (manual) chair require the use
4:39
of your arms and hands.
4:40
So it makes it difficult to wear bracelets that just get in
4:46
you way and are really annoying when you’re trying
4:48
to push.
4:49
I find that if I do want to wear rings or bracelets
4:52
I have to wear one that is small and that is not large
4:56
or would bother me if I was writing for example.
4:59
If I wear a bracelet I have to wear one that is tight to
5:03
my wrist and that isn’t jangling around [moves arm]
5:06
and annoying me when I’m trying to move
5:08
even though large bracelets can be really cute
5:11
you’ll probably hate yourself trying to move with one on
5:15
If I do want to wear a bracelet that is larger or could be
5:19
more annoying when I’m riding
5:20
I just keep it in my bag and then wear it when I’m not
5:24
actively pushing, that way I don’t have to sacrifice
5:27
wearing my cute bracelets for pushing my chair
5:30
when you’re in a chair people have a tendency to
5:32
look more at your chair than they do at you and your face
5:34
So I like to wear cute earrings, a cute necklace
5:38
or something nice in my hair, so that people will be
5:40
drawn to my face versus my chair
5:44
other than rings and bracelets
5:47
most likely when you’re using a chair you’re going to
5:50
be using some type of glove or if you’re not
5:52
I would recommend doing so because it really prevents a
5:55
lot of pain and blisters when you’re trying to stop yourself
5:58
from racing down a hill, or when going anywhere where
6:01
you need to stop quickly.
6:03
People often think that biker gloves are good enough
6:06
but in my experience they just don’t do enough
6:09
they don’t have the right amount of traction
6:12
because they’re not meant for a chair
6:14
they’re meant to prevent small scrapes and bruises if you
6:16
fall off your bike or if you need something to just prevent
6:20
sweaty palm from interfering with the grip on your handle
6:23
bars.
6:24
But when you’re in a chair you need a lot of traction
6:27
because you’re the only thing that’s stopping yourself.
6:30
Some people have brakes that add traction but for the
6:34
most part you’re going to be grabbing yourself and
6:37
stopping yourself with your hands
6:38
And, so, a tip that my good friend told me was that if you
6:42
have any type of bracelet, like a live strong bracelet, a
6:45
pride bracelet, or any of those, um, plastic/ rubber
6:51
bracelets. You can slip them over your hands,
6:56
it works better if you have bigger hands, but if you slip
7:03
them between your the area between your thumb and
7:06
your wrist they’ll add a lot of traction when you’re stopping
7:13
they’re just a bit of rubber that if you don’t have gloves,
7:16
you’re waiting for gloves to come in the mail
7:18
These are a good tactic to stop you chair without hurting
7:23
your hands as much
7:23
But, personally, I recommend investing in some good leather
7:27
gloves, they don;t have to be the nicest leather, but any
7:33
leather works well in helping you ride more easily
7:41
I just got these gloves from Amazon for about $20
7:45
because they have lace on them on one side
7:47
and leather on the other side, so they can still be cute
7:50
while still giving me the ability to have function with
7:53
using my chairs and work in a way that’s effective and
7:57
fun
7:58
Overall, however you should feel comfortable, confident,
8:02
and happy! Whether you’re in, or out, of your wheelchair
8:06
being a wheelchair-user, whether you use it for chronic
8:11
illness , or mobility issues, or a combination of the two
8:14
(like me!) people will often take more notice of it than you
8:19
but dressing for a chair shouldn’t be focused on
8:22
simply drawing people’s attention towards you, rather,
8:26
just as a way to express yourself, maybe feel closer to
8:29
your faith, and be happy with how you look and present
8:32
yourself to the world everyday
8:34
When you’re disabled it’s easy for people to
8:36
overlook you as a person. But I find that breaking down
8:40
barriers of fashion and disability, is a simple way of
8:44
humanizing who we are and making people realize that
8:47
we are more than just our mobility devices (+other
8:50
devices), our illness and our disabilities/abilities.
8:53
Thank you all so much for watching!
8:55
Let me know down in the comments below what you
8:57
thought of the video and if there’s anything else
8:59
you’d like to see me make or talk about!
9:01
A special thanks to my good friend Angeline
9:04
who made the banner on my channel, edited this video,
9:07
and is amazing at making AMVs and a bunch of cool stuff
9:11
her link is in the description box below or maybe
9:14
I’m gonna put a link, I don’t know.
9:17
I hope you all have an amazing day! Thanks again!
9:18
May Peace be upon you all!
9:20
And keep on breathing!