Our model Jessica Woods has anxiety and depression which make it harder to function in social settings. When we first interacted with her she mentioned that she likes tech wear and prioritizes comfort. We hope that our designs bring her wishes to life.
Jessica's Experience with the Project
Why are you interested in this opportunity? (How did you hear about it? What excited you about the experience?)
This opportunity seems rewarding, fun, and exciting. I heard about this opportunity through an email from Maisoon of the DPRC. I am a student registered with the DPRC. I'm interested in this opportunity because I like the idea of celebrating and uplifting my disabilities. People with disabilities hear all too often about their limiting aspects and not nearly enough about their strengths. I'm curious about the positive and creative aspects my disability will highlight in the garment design.
Briefly describe your disability and what accessibility needs you may have to participate in this project.
I have ADHD, social anxiety, and depression. I need breaks, I may be slower to reply with longer emails, due to anxiety and depression. Do not be afraid to email me again after two or three day of not responding to an email. I have trouble keeping track of things and reminders do help keep me on track. I may need coffee breaks every once in a while to help with my focus and attention. Text is the absolute best way to reach me if something is very time sensitive.
How may your disability affect the design of the garment?
I really like many pockets and tighter or compression-like materials as I find them comforting. Wool really irritates my skin and I cannot handle this material. I cannot with overly textured materials.
How would you like the apparel design students to help you celebrate your disability?
I feel like highlighting my ADHD with my Depression would be very interesting in the garment design. I would like the apparel design students to help celebrate my disability by making the garment look cool, edgy, unique, and creative. This would help celebrate and showcase the uniqueness, creativity, and aims at practicality (pockets, ect), and positive traits that neurodivergent/people with disabilities possess.
Designer: Claire Gonsalves
Claire Describing the Design for Jessica
The sketches that I devised below are made to cater to Jessica’s specific needs. Based on our team’s research we have concluded that fitted clothing is a great option for people suffering from anxiety and depression. My pieces applied her desire for a closer fit by using Neoprene (the fabric used for scuba diving) as the core fabric. I used neoprene in the classic sense to create fitted, insulated, and comfortable garments. I also applied harnesses and weighted pockets to bring the garments closer to the body. The idea of weighted pockets came in because my dog wears a weighted vest for anxiety when there is thunder. I already heard of the benefits of weighted vests for exercising and weighted blankets as well, so I figured that evenly distributed weighted pockets would be effective for Jessica.
Carlos Rabelaro and Claire Gonsalves Collaborated on this Mood Board
Carlos's Designs for Jessica
Claire's Designs for Jessica
Sin Riggs's Designs for Jessica
Sin Describes Their Design for Jessica
I am ending my junior year soon. I will continue to focus on my own brand followinggraduation. Bigger dreams will follow. Our model has ADHD, social anxiety, depression, andissues with highly textured materials.They asked us to focus on practicality with techwear and motorcycle styles in mind. My take onthe design follows cyberpunk apocalypse x techwear origins.We are designing to satisfy our models' desires and highlight their disability through composition. We will accommodate our model’s physical need for comfort through carefulselection of fabrics. Pockets and other practicality elements will also serve to alleviate some ofthe stress that comes with not having items of comfort within reach.Fashion is a form of self expression that invites discussions. An outfit can serve to break the ice and create conversation for people with social anxiety.