Online platform for fashion and lifestyle Zalando has launched its first adaptive fashion collection alongside an ‘adaptive fashion hub’, which dedicates an accessible area of clothing collections for people with disabilities that identifies adaptive styles to develop better customer experience.

Adaptive fashion is clothing, footwear and accessories that cater to the needs of disabled people, intentionally designed to be accessible for people living with permanent or temporary impairments.

Throughout the creation and design of its adaptive clothing collections, Zalando has been working with the creative agency All is for All, which specialises in helping brands be truly inclusive and accessible for disabled people.

To help disabled people discover, browse and shop Zalando’s adaptive fashion assortment, Zalando launched an adaptive fashion hub, dedicated adaptive collection pages and a flag for identifying adaptive styles. Zalando was supported and consulted by All is for All throughout the process of developing the customer experience and marketing activation.

To raise awareness of adaptive fashion, Zalando launched a dedicated marketing campaign “Embrace what makes you, you” representing voices from the disabled community and featuring content created by disabled talent.

Grace Stratton, Director at All is for All, comments: “Beyond its functional impacts, disability is a community, a shared lived experience, something to be understood, appreciated more deeply by non-disabled people and embraced.

“We supported Zalando as partners through this entire journey and in designing the positioning and messaging of this campaign. We are so proud of the way it portrays disabled people and are grateful for Zalando’s authentic partnership with us.”

The collection was launched as part of the company’s commitment to providing a truly inclusive assortment and experience for underrepresented groups by 2025, it includes women’s and men’s clothing and footwear and consists of more than 140 styles across its private labels.

Prior to launching the collections, Zalando conducted extensive qualitative and quantitative customer research across several markets to better understand the experience and needs of disabled customers.

With the launch of adaptive fashion, Zalando wants to make a step forward to address disabled persons living with impairments of different kinds such as limited mobility and limited dexterity, as well as sensory sensitivity.

The initiative also addresses caregivers of children with disabilities. Styles in the first collections include seated designs for wheelchair use, sensory-friendly fabrications, pieces with easy closures and styles that accommodate prosthetics or bandages.

Sara Diez, VP Category Women and Private Labels at Zalando, said: “Our vision is to be the Starting Point for Fashion that is welcoming to everyone. We see a gap in the fashion market — finding fashionable adaptive clothing still represents a challenge for disabled people.

“By launching adaptive collections under our private labels and introducing the Tommy Hilfiger Adaptive collection to our customers, we hope to contribute to solving this challenge and offer a varied selection of stylish adaptive fashion across price and size in one place.

“We want to learn from the disabled community and inspire our partners, so that together we can continue building a delightful experience for our disabled customers and making fashion even more inclusive”.

Tommy Hilfiger is a global lifestyle brand that since 2017 has consistently invested in and produced adaptive fashion, making it an ideal brand to add to the platforms offering as Zalando embarks on its own adaptive journey, where it will continue to listen to and learning from the disabled community to further improve the experience of finding and shopping adaptive fashion for customers.

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