Fashion for all local student wants to make everyone look fabulous

first_imgCarroll sits at her new desk with a modified switch that operates her sewing machine.Growing up, Courtney Carroll can remember her mother taking her brothers to the store and having no problem finding clothes for them.  It was easy.  However, Carroll never had the same experience.Living with Osteogenesis Imperfecta, or OI for short, Carroll found it hard and challenging to buy clothes as a child. Dependent on a wheelchair for mobility, Carroll quickly realized that most ready to wear clothing was not meant for those in wheelchairs.“I would have to buy two different sizes of the same outfit,” Carroll said.While this might seem like a difficult challenge to overcome, Carroll, now 26 years old, used this experience as a child as inspiration for her future, she wants to be a clothing designer for people who are handicapped.On the day I visited Carroll’s cozy, one story home in Beech Grove, IN, she was receiving equipment for her new in home studio that will accommodate her needs.“It’s like Christmas,” Carroll said.Easter Seals Crossroads’ own Brian Norton, manager of clinical assistive technology, was Santa Clause that day. Delivering a desk and a light box for tracing patterns and cutting fabric, Norton assembled the desk and evaluated what adjustments needed to be made in order to make it the most useful for Carroll.Despite the happiness of this day, it was a long time coming.  After moving to Indiana in 2007 from Houston, Carroll had to make connections with Vocational Rehabilitation (VR) in order to get situated in her new home.  During the month of March of this year, VR took Carroll on as a client.Even though it took longer than expected to receive assistance, Carroll never gave up.  She enrolled in classes at the Art Institute of Indianapolis, or AI for you artsy folks, and did her best to prove that she could do this, just like anyone else.Attending class three days a week, plus any open labs she can make, Carroll spends a fair amount of time at the institute learning about textiles, design and more, all in an effort for her to become the next big name in apparel for those with disabilities.When those around her, including the president of AI, noticed Carroll’s hard work and determination to become self-sufficient and knowledgeable of the fashion industry, they began to write letters to VR to advocate for the assistance of Carroll.It worked.Carroll’s hard work and support system, helped to convince the organization to pay her tuition and even help to finance the equipment delivered the day I met Carroll.Carroll’s new home studio is still in the works, but its design and accessibility stems from that of her classrooms at the institute.  Using modified switches and a specialized wheelchair that can lift her up to her desired height at the table, Carroll has designed and made a dress, a jacket and pair of pants.  Be sure to keep your eye out for this young designer, there is sure to be more to come. Share this…TwitterFacebookPinterestLinkedInEmailPrint RelatedIt’s What’s On the Inside — AND the Outside — That CountsSeptember 24, 2014In “INDATA News”It All Starts With a Dream: Spotlight on Laura MedcalfJuly 23, 2014In “Easter Seals Crossroads”Fashion Moves Forward with Adaptive ClothingMay 16, 2018In “Autism”last_img

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