Ice Cream! Cinderella! Dragons! Oh my! -RHoward

Recently, because of a change in the structure of the Biomedical Design and Entrepreneurship class, I have joined forces with another classmate in order to create better costumes for children in wheelchairs. So far, we’ve done a lot of small things, but today, we started to work on the more physical aspects of our project. When we first started this endeavor, we focused on looking up especially creative designs people is wheelchairs (or their parents) made for different events the most common of which was Halloween and Cosplay conventions.

Just to give you an example of what it means to make a costume that is specifically designed for a wheelchair, I have given you a couple of examples below (Note: all of these images come from The Independence Center website):

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Cinderella Source: http://www.theindependencecenter.org/library/images/Blog_Images/b40f39304f50979b474ca05052c9905b.jpg
  • I really love this design, not only because it was Cinderella themed, but because little lights were strung up in the carriage which gave the whole costume in fairy tale feel. Notice how whoever made this costume incorporated the wheels of the wheelchair by twisting vines through the spokes.
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Drum Source: http://www.theindependencecenter.org/library/images/Blog_Images/About.com.rock-and-roll-drummer-halloween-craft-photo-420-FF1098COSTA20.jpg
  • This costume is interesting to me, because when I first saw it, I forgot that a wheelchair was the base of this design. It’s amazing how the designers of this chair made the drum set light enough for the child in the chair to be comfortable, yet inclusive of the whole chair. Rock on little man, rock on.
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Ice Cream man Source: http://www.theindependencecenter.org/library/images/Blog_Images/Wheelchair-Costumes.jpg
  • Cute. That is the only way to describe this design. Image an ice cream truck rolling up your front walk on Halloween ready to collect candy donations! Whoever made this costume got especially innovative, adding more wheels to the tuck besides the ones already provided by the wheelchair. And look at the rack of ice cream cones on the stand towards the back of the truck. This is amazing.
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Original Image

So, as I was saying earlier, my group started to work on the more physical aspects of our project today. We decided that we were going to make a costume for boys ages 8 to 10 (we’re still coming up with an appropriate age range) of a little dragon. After this decision, we cut two large strips of butcher paper for ourselves, and taped them to a wall where we then proceeded to look for an image on google of a dragon, and then projected the image onto the pieces of paper and traced the image onto the paper. Next time, I believe we’re going to make the lines we traced thicker and then cut out the shape and make it sturdy with strips of wood.

Anyway, thanks for reading my blog post, and please be sure to keep reading about my groups progress with the dragon costume.

4 thoughts on “Ice Cream! Cinderella! Dragons! Oh my! -RHoward

Add yours

  1. This project gives me a warm feeling inside. I love how it incorporates art/design and entrepreneurship, along with also philanthropy to improve the self-esteem of children in wheelchairs. This could really lift the spirits of a child who may feel left out of Halloween, or as if they stick out because of their disability. A unique, fun costume that other kids don’t have could help these kids see their disability as an opportunity in some sense. It reminds me of Amy Purdy, star of a recent Superbowl commercial (see https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PjUfygo5mzw). Amy is a double amputee, but uses her disability to her advantage and has only gained confidence – she’s now a paralympic surfboarder. She exchanges her prosthetic legs for different models: some for sports, dancing, photo shoots…

    This post and Anjali’s post about her Indian cookbook are my two favorites so far. They seem like very different ideas, but I get the same feeling of passion from both of you. You both love your new projects and are inspired to try crazy, exciting things!

    It seems like you’ve already decided on a dragon, but I have a few other fun ideas you might consider:
    -Howl’s Moving Castle (the actual castle, with all those cool castle pieces)
    -Pumpkin carriage from Cinderella
    -A customizable dragon…? Maybe you could include some type of DIY kit, where they can create their own flames or paint the scales or add spikes/talons or a tail. Kids love to make their own costumes unique by putting their own work into it.

    You don’t have to use these ideas – I just got inspired by your post and wanted to share them with you. Keep up the good work. I can’t wait to see your finished costume!

    Annalise Irby

  2. I really like the idea of creating a design where the wheels of your wheelchair aren’t noticeable (like with the drum set design). I love your idea for creating a dragon. Maybe you could make it so that the kid is the dragon rider. This could let you use the seat of the wheelchair as a sort of saddle similar to your design and material of the dragon itself. This could involve a cloth covering over the seat, and possibly armor for the rider that could just be a cloth material that would fit over the head of the child similar to how a life jacket works (see here). I think this would allow the kid to feel cooler and it might give them the actual feeling of being a dragon rider, because the funnest part of wearing a costume is feeling like you’re actually whatever/whoever you dress up as.
    For the actual dragon itself you might consider making it fit around the wheel chair instead of just being something that you attach to both sides. By having the head be directly in front of the child, the tail being directly behind, and possibly even a spike attached to the back of the chairs seat, you will let the dragon look more realistic.
    I think overall your project is a very cool idea and if I didn’t already mention it, I LOVE the idea of a dragon because dragons are cool. I wish y’all the best of luck, and look forward to seeing your final design in action!

  3. Amelia Fisher
    Originally submitted on 2015/02/06 at 5:59 pm

    I really like the idea of creating a design where the wheels of your wheelchair aren’t noticeable (like with the drum set design). I love your idea for creating a dragon. Maybe you could make it so that the kid is the dragon rider. This could let you use the seat of the wheelchair as a sort of saddle similar to your design and material of the dragon itself. This could involve a cloth covering over the seat, and possibly armor for the rider that could just be a cloth material that would fit over the head of the child similar to how a life jacket works (see here). I think this would allow the kid to feel cooler and it might give them the actual feeling of being a dragon rider, because the funnest part of wearing a costume is feeling like you’re actually whatever/whoever you dress up as.
    For the actual dragon itself you might consider making it fit around the wheel chair instead of just being something that you attach to both sides. By having the head be directly in front of the child, the tail being directly behind, and possibly even a spike attached to the back of the chairs seat, you will let the dragon look more realistic.
    I think overall your project is a very cool idea and if I didn’t already mention it, I LOVE the idea of a dragon because dragons are cool. I wish y’all the best of luck, and look forward to seeing your final design in action!

  4. I love the idea of creating better costumes for kids in wheelchairs. This will not only help the child feel better but it will also make them feel a part of Halloween or other event that involves costumes. Although I like the idea of the ice cream truck I feel like it would be too heavy. When finding and creating a costumes I think that it should be taken into consideration the weight and how much space it will take up. I think that overall this project will be very successful and different which will help when it comes to marketing. I can’t wait to see the final results!

    Maria F

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