- In an effort to expand the department store’s inclusive offerings, Kohl’s and Nine West have introduced an adaptive apparel line, the retailer announced on Sept. 13.
- The collection is focused on business casual attire and features items including blazers, blouses, pants, dresses and tops. The apparel is designed with adaptive features such as shirt cuffs with magnets and added stretch in the waist seam and is available on the Kohl’s website, according to the announcement.
- Kohl's showed its adaptive assortment during New York Fashion Week at the Runway of Dreams Foundation show. More than 60 models with various disabilities and backgrounds wore the adaptive clothing and footwear during the show.
This fall, Kohl’s plans to add more adaptive products for men and women across its Sonoma Goods for Life and TekGear private label brands, while continuing to offer inclusive footwear and apparel for kids.
Prior to its Nine West collaboration, Kohl’s teamed up with Gamut Management, a consulting and talent management company for people with disabilities, to create adaptive products for adults under the Sonoma Goods for Life, Tek Gear, SO and Tommy Hilfiger names.
“Kohl’s is thrilled to expand our inclusive offerings and bring Nine West’s polished wardrobe staples to customers nationwide,” Nick Jones, Kohl’s chief merchandising and digital officer, said in a statement. “We continue to take cues from our customers and deliver products they are looking for. With a focus on style and thoughtful modifications for comfort and ease of independent dressing, this adaptive assortment was designed specifically to make every day easier.”
Meanwhile, other retailers have been focusing on inclusive apparel. Last month, QVC added an adaptive clothing collection to its private label apparel line, Denim & Co. The collection is available in sizes XXS to 3X and is designed for people with disabilities, people in post-surgery and recovery, caregivers, elderly adults and wheelchair users.
Though retailers are creating clothing collections for consumers with disabilities, research suggests that this demographic remains underserved. According to a Coresight Research survey released last year, nearly half of respondents who have a disability or care for someone with a disability reported having difficulty finding clothing that meets their needs. Three in five respondents cited price, size and fit as the top challenges when shopping for adaptive apparel.
Nine West Holdings filed for bankruptcy in 2018. A year later, the company exited Chapter 11 and was renamed Premier Brands Group. The Nine West brand, along with Bandolino footwear, were sold in a bankruptcy auction to Authentic Brands Group for $340 million.