Consumer studies: Adaptive clothing


Good day learners today we are starting a new topic called ADAPTIVE CLOTHING.

Adaptive clothing is clothing that is specially designed for people with physical disabilities, elderly and infirm people. In our previous lesson we spoke about reasons for wearing clothes, one of the reason was AESTHETIC, therefore physical disable, elderly and infirm people also need to wear comfortable clothes so that they can look and feel aesthetically pleasing.

Lesson outcomes for the lessons: Learners need to bed able to:

  1. Identify and explain clothing challenges for people with physical disabilities.
  1. Describe  garments that are suitable specific physical disability
  1. Design adaptive clothes for people with physical disabilities


Lets watch this video so you can understand the important concepts of this topic




Watch all the provided videos and read the notes  to answers these following questions

1.  Choose the correct answer                                                                                            

1.1 Clothing that is specially designed for people with physical disabilities, the elderly and infirm.

A.  Clothing labels

B.  Fashion

C.  Adaptive clothing

D.  Fabric care symbols

1.2 Type of clothes that extends in one piece fully to collar, leaving a diagonal lines seam from the armpit to the collar.

A.  Fasteners

B.  Raglan

C. Elastic waistbands

D. Stretchy fabric

1.3 Reversible clothes are normally design for…..

A. People in wheelchair

B. Blind people

C. People with artificial limb

D. People with stiff joints

1.4 Putting clothes on and taking then of is one of the challenges that people with physical disabilities encounter

A. True

B. False

1.5 People who have artificial limbs need comfortable clothing that allows easy movement

A. True  

B. False                                                                           (5)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   2. Suggest clothing design for people in wheelchairs                             (10)          

3. You are an adaptive clothing designer, you are asked to design clothes for people with disability resulting from illness or disease                                                                                                                                                                            

A. What kind of fastening would you use

B. If you are order to use buttons and zips which size would you prefer?

C. what kind of waistband and fabric would you use? (5)





Read through the note, watch the videos and make use of the provided links to help you answers the task questions 


Notes adaptive clothing (these notes are summary of what is in the videos)  

What is meant by word adaptive clothing?

  • Adaptive clothing is clothing that is specially designed for people with physical disabilities, elderly and infirm people.

Infirm mean: not physically strong

What are examples physically disabilities that you?

  • Blind people, people in wheelchairs, people with artificial limbs

 Limbs refer to leg and arms

Clothing challenges for people with disabilities

I will mention four main challenges that they encounter

Putting clothes on and taking them off:  therefore clothes must be easy to put them on and take them off

Managing fastenings: zips, buttons, hooks, snaps buckles

Back and side fastening are difficult for people who are physically disabled. 

All clothes should have front fastening where possible, elastics a and Velcro should be used instead of buttons

Lack of movement: tight clothes are a big challenge, clothes should not be too tight, and they should be the right size and be stretchy fabric

Durability of fabric: it must withstand friction in must be able to go back to its original shape when is it wrinkled.

Designing clothes for blind people:

Revisable, tagging system, put tops and bottom together, braille system

Braille: reading by touching

Design for people with artificial limbs:

Comfortable that allow easy movement, it must be easy to put on and remove

Design include: wide neckline, wrap around, adequate sleeve opening, front and side opening

Design for people in wheelchair

  • Raglan sleeves:  extend in one piece fully to the collar leaving diagonal seams

They add freedom of movement, due to extra space created by the shape, no shoulder seams Hem of a jacket must be shorter at the back

  • Elastic waistbands
  • Pleated trousers

Designing for people with disabilities resulted from illness or disease Velcro fastenings

  • Large buttons and zip tabs
  • Elastic waistbands
  • Stretchy fabric





 ADAPTIVE CLOTHING: Marking guide 

1.  Choose the correct answer , multiple choice question  there is only one correct answer     


 2. Suggest clothing design for people in wheelchair         

  • When suggesting focus on the type of fabric you going to used and provide reason for your answer
  • State the type of fasteners, position and the size and give reasons  
  • Clearly  explain how you going to design it, how is it going to look like, if possible you can even draw it.  


3. You are an adaptive clothing designer, you are asked to design clothes for people with disability resulting from illness or disease         

A. State the type of fastening you going to use, provide only one type of fastening,  and justify your answer 

B.  Any relevant answer 

C. Any relevant answer will be accepted 

















Being physically challenged is no reason for people to be marginalized and not be given the same respect, recognition and equal opportunities that the “normal” people enjoy.

- Our approach must be inclusive of everybody regardless of their physical status because we are gifted differently and can contribute significantly to any school or work place.



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