As an industry entrenched with ableist (the discrimination and social prejudice against people with disabilities) values, the fashion world can be intimidating for bodies that don’t fit the world’s narrow beauty standards.Â
Grace Statton, the brains behind All is For All – a Kiwi platform pushing for a more inclusive fashion industry and fighting to break down barriers for people with disabilities – is frustrated that normative standards have made disabled people think they can’t succeed in the fashion space.
âI think that a huge amount of work is already being done, which is so great and absolutely worthy of acknowledgement,â says All is for Allâs Grace Stratton.
But she believes that designers and media need to be doing more to engage with the disabled community. âAnd that is something weâre proud to help facilitate,â she says.
Stratton adds that change has been a long time coming, and now is not the time to rest on oneâs laurels. âDisabled people, and, really, all people who donât fit the ânormativeâ mould, have been waiting long enough. Itâs our time now.â
As for what individuals can do to expedite this future wherein concepts like âinclusivityâ and âdiversityâ are no longer marketing buzzwords, but part of the everyday and unspoken fabric of the fashion industry.
âSupport disabled people on social media, follow diverse accounts and challenge your own thinking. The books you read, the shows you watch… what are they saying about disability? And does that reflect reality? Donât just accept the images you see. And remember that if you donât see or hear about disability in what youâre consuming, thatâs an issue in itself,â says Stratton.