Kohl’s is broadening its assortment of adaptive products with a new collection apparel made specifically for adults with disabilities.
The Menomonee Falls-based retailer this week announced the launch of its new men’s and women’s adaptive apparel in three of its largest private-label brands, Sonoma Goods for Life, Tek Gear and SO brands, as well as national brand Tommy Hilfiger.
Now available for purchase on Kohls.com, the collection was designed in partnership with GAMUT Management – a consulting and talent management company for people with disabilities – and adds to Kohl’s existing assortment of adaptive apparel, footwear, costumes and toys for children. The company in 2019 launched an adaptive kidswear collection for babies through young adults under the company’s Jumping Beans, SO and Urban Pipeline brand names.
“Kohl’s is proud to expand our adaptive assortments and offer inclusive collections for the entire family,” said Ron Murray, Kohl’s interim chief merchandising officer. “At Kohl’s, we understand how important it is to ensure all of our customers and associates are able to celebrate their personal style and independence in a way that meets their individual needs. Our adult adaptive collection is about creating apparel that is accessible to everyone, regardless of age or ability, and serving more of our customers with disabilities.”
Adaptive apparel is designed to be more comfortable and functional for people with disabilities and their caretakers. Kohl’s said its adult adaptive apparel was created with three core principles in mind:
- “Physical functionality” – Each piece is made with a focus on ease of dressing, promoting independence and increased wearability, for example, wider necklines and plackets at shoulder seams for easier accessibility, functional leg openings and built-in waistline adjustability for seated comfort.
- “Comfort first” – The inside of the garment it made to feel soft and smooth by incorporating soft fabrics, using heat sealed tags and engineering extra features to ensure all details are comfortable against the skin.
- “Everyday staples” – The collection includes every-day wear, including regular fit denim jeans, active leggings, long and short sleeve base layer t-shirts and sweatshirts.
As part of the design process, Kohl’s and GAMUT Management hosted Fit Focus Groups with people with disabilities, which provided insights that enabled the retailer’s design team to create an assortment of products specially for the target customer, featuring “trend-relevant styles,” the company said in a news release.
“As we continue to work toward a future of true inclusion in retail, we are proud of the work Kohl’s has done with GAMUT Management to understand the needs of people with disabilities in product development,” said Mindy Scheier, GAMUT Management founder and CEO.
More than 41 million people live with a disability in the U.S., and the group has historically been overlooked by the apparel retail and fashion industries, said Michelle Banks, Kohl’s chief diversity and inclusion officer.
“By listening to customers across the country, Kohl’s innovative design team was able to create new apparel that provides new options for adults with disabilities and we look forward to continuing to expand in this market to address the growing needs of our customers,” said Banks.