Well hello there! We’re Molly and Emma, the founders of JAM the label. JAM is an inclusive fashion brand designed with people with disability in mind. Before we get into the nitty gritty, we want to ask you – what are you wearing? And more importantly, why? Why did you choose what you are wearing today? Was it because you feel confident in it? Was it because it makes you feel happy? Was it because it’s comfortable?
Clothing is a way to express yourself, a way to make yourself feel good. We at JAM believe that everyone should have the right to feel good in what they wear. Many people with disability are forced to choose clothing for function (e.g., because it’s easy to put on or take off, or because it’s comfortable to sit in for long periods of time), rather than for fashion or because they think it looks good.
Through our jobs as occupational therapists and disability support workers, we have met so many incredible people over the last five years. JAM was inspired by two of these people who are particularly close to our hearts; Jack and Maddie. They are the reason why we called our label ‘JAM’.
Jack and Maddie both have cerebral palsy and spend the majority of their day in their wheelchair. Both love being outside and going for walks – but, as we live in Melbourne, we all know that the weather can change in a second! As a result, they will often have a blanket or jacket thrown over them backwards for warmth, as trying to wrestle a jacket on when you’re out walking is just too hard. It’s safe to assume that we wouldn’t want to walk around with our hoody hanging down our front like that; so why would they?
“The inaccessibility of common clothing is a gap that should not exist in the consumer world”
Molly Rogers and Emma Clegg
JAM’s mission is to promote self-expression, independence and dignity by providing stylish, inclusive fashion opportunities for all. We do this by creating fashionable clothing options that enable ease of dressing for all.
We also think it’s really important to note that we refer to ourselves as an inclusive fashion brand, not an “adaptive clothing” brand. Why is this important? Because we don’t believe in creating items FOR people with disability; we create items that can be worn by everybody, which rightfully INCLUDES those with disability.
The inaccessibility of common clothing is a gap that should not exist in the consumer world, an issue that should never be ignored when creating products for the public. But the reality is that this issue does exist and needs to be corrected. Therefore, we also encourage other businesses to join us in protecting the right of every person to dress comfortably, as well as fashionably.
Finally, something we value above all else is collaboration. We want to be a fully inclusive brand and we can only do that with input from others. We want to ensure that we’re talking to and listening to as many different people as possible. So, if you have any fashion frustrations or difficulties with clothing, we’d love to hear from you. Our suggestions page is just itching to hear from you (…it must be wearing a t-shirt with a darn annoying tag!).