Let's focus on what we can do!

By Disabled People for Disabled People

  • Home
  • >
  • Latest Headlines
  • >
  • Ailbhe Keane of Izzy Wheels on pimped out wheelchairs, spreading positivity and their new collaboration with Barbie – Creative Boom
Tuesday, 3 September, 2019

Ailbhe Keane of Izzy Wheels on pimped out wheelchairs, spreading positivity and their new collaboration with Barbie – Creative Boom

Ailbhe and Izzy, founders of Izzy Wheels, photo by Sarah Doyle, wheels by Timothy Goodman

[responsivevoice_button voice=”UK English Female” buttontext=”Listen to Post”]

“If you can’t stand up, stand out!”, reads the positive strapline for Izzy Wheels – the colourful brand that collaborates with leading artists, designers and brands to create unique wheelchair covers.

Founded by two Irish sisters, Ailbhe and Izzy Keane, their bright and vibrant designs transform a medical device into a piece of fashion and self-expression.

Collaborations so far include Malike Favre, Hattie Stewart, Callen Schaub, Craig & Karl, Kelly Anna, Timothy Goodman, Orla Kiely, Supermundane and Camille Walala. Just this week, Izzy Wheels has announced its partnership with Barbie.

We chatted to Ailbhe about how it all began, their recent big news and what they have planned next for Izzy Wheels.

How did your brand get started?

My little sister, Izzy, was born with spina bifida and is paralysed from her waist down. Growing up she found it very frustrating and upsetting that her wheelchair was the first thing that people would notice about her but it wasn’t a reflection of her bright and bubbly personality.

She has always had a very positive relationship with her chair and sees it as a symbol of her ability, not her disability. I studied art in university and when I was in my final year, in 2016, I created a range of wheel covers for my sister’s chair that matched her outfits. I created an Instagram account called @izzywheels and uploaded photos of Izzy modelling her colourful new wheels and it just went completely viral online.

One of our videos was viewed three million times in one day and suddenly we were getting messages from wheelchair users and designers from all over the world. We decided to launch an online store selling our designs and have never looked back.

How does it feel to be empowering so many people’s lives? Making so many people smile?

We feel so lucky to have created something that makes people smile and brings colour into peoples lives. We also feel very privileged when people write to us and share their stories about living with a disability and how Izzy Wheels had helped shape their outlook.

Read more at: https://www.creativeboom.com/features/izzy-wheels/

Read more at: 
Categories :
  • Latest Headlines
  • Personal Stories
  • Spina Bifida
Socials :

Recent posts

Student Profiles Coming Soon...