“Somethings that are most important are the hardest things to say”
In 2007, I became wheelchair-bound at the age of 21 after a traumatic car accident that left me a T4 paraplegic (I can’t feel from the chest down). Transitioning into my new normal, I quickly realized that I couldn’t find functional and comfortable clothing that was also fashionable. So I set out to create it.
Launching my first piece, blue jeans for both men and women, I want to make it possible for those with disabilities to express their “alter-ego” through fashion, while breaking down social barriers.
I graduated from Morehead State University in 2011, was crowned “Ms. Wheelchair Kentucky” in 2012, so yes I have a pageant wave that I use often 🙂
I’m a full-time employee at McKenzie Concrete of KY where I take care of all the paperwork. I am also a volunteer mentor at Cardinal Hill Rehabilitation Hospital, member of the Kentucky Congress on Spinal Cord Injury, Kentucky Appalachian Rural Rehabilitation Network, and a board member of the Lexington Fashion Collaborative.
When I was crowned “Ms. Wheelchair Kentucky” two years ago I was able to advocate for those in wheelchairs as I traveled the US sharing my story. It was during that time that I realized I was destined to design clothing for those who are wheelchair-bound. I knew I was in the position to make a difference firsthand by developing an adaptable and functional clothing line. When I began networking and reaching out to other people with disabilities, I soon realized that we all shared something in common: the discomfort and difficulty when it comes to the everyday need of getting dressed and access to use a catheter.
So now I create clothing for people in wheelchairs that I couldn’t find in the stores where I shop. My customer is a person who loves fashion and happens to be in a wheelchair. The Alter UR Ego customer does not want to sacrifice style for functionality.