The Able Label Blog
Live life to its fullest in comfort and style with easier dressing.
Autumn is here and so too is our new collection of easy-dress clothing to see you into this transitional period, also covering you right through the winter months to come.
Our clothing aims to help all women look good in the most comfortable quality fabrics that are all designed to be easier to dress into and out of. Our clever little touches make a big difference to day-to-day living, in comfort and style.
The Kent County Show is an annual event showcasing farming, countryside and rural life. The show brings together the very best of Kent with animals and food, fun and excitement and above all, a flavour of what ’The Garden of England’ has to offer. The three-day event saw over 90,000 visitors, 400 exhibitors and trade stands and over 300 competitions, activities and displays this year.
The Able Label proudly exhibited with a stand in The Wrinkly Roadshow Hub Marquee. A brand new addition at the Kent County Show this year, the hubs aim was to provide advice, information and support in order to maintain independent living. All those with stands in the marquee had the same goal of helping people to live independent lives.
Exhibitors showing alongside The Able Label clothing included:
CROP – a charity setup to help with citizen rights for older people as well as with technology or any problem that may require a second opinion or some intervention from an experienced volunteer to help out
Home Instead Senior Care - supporting loved ones to stay safe at home without losing any personal freedom. This leaves family members feeling happy and confident that their loved ones are enjoying the highest standards of care at all times
The Family Funeral Service in Maidstone – a small independent funeral company
Argo Life & Legacy – provides advice, guidance and support to help you plan for the future whilst dealing with the present. Wanting to help you achieve your wishes, lighten the stress and strain that comes with age, affluence or ill health.
Audley Homes – retirement villages that enable you to stay firmly in control, with complete freedom and independence to live the life you choose. Own your own retirement home, in a beautiful and secure environment, without having to give up the things you love, including your pets. Plus, you have the added luxury of having your gardens and property maintained for you.
Domus Live-In Care – offers a professional, reliable service, providing 24 hour care and support to clients in the comfort and familiar surroundings of their own homes
Centra – have a wide range of care and support services to protect their customers’ individual needs, safety and independence. Through their breadth and depth of experience and resources, they deliver quality services to meet individual needs
Alzheimer’s and Dementia Support Services – a not for profit charitable organisation that aims to enable people with dementia to remain in their own home for as long as possible
Oakhouse Foods – with a reputation for quality, great value and a caring service, they have become one of the country’s favourite ready meal services delivering food straight to your door.
The Garden of England Homecare – aims to raise the standards and quality of social care provision in Kent, by providing the highest quality of care to all their service users regardless of status in accordance with the Equalities Act 2010.
It was great fun showing alongside all of these exhibitors, learning more about the great services they offer to encourage independence.
We’d like to say a huge thank you to those of you who were able to come down and see us at the show. It was a fantastic event, which enabled us to let more people know about the range of easier dressing clothes we provide to encourage independence and grow self-confidence through self-dressing.
If you know anyone who may benefit from The Able Label’s range of adaptive clothing, please help to share our details:
We are constantly talking to our customers - listening to their feedback and where possible, taking action.
Previously the Frankie Straight Leg Trouser was only available in navy. However by popular demand, it is now also available in black too!
The best selling Frankie Trouser in black has all of the same features you loved from the navy version including flattering high rolled waistband, easy-care super comfy high-stretch fabric, no fastenings at the waist and extended zip at the hem but offers an alternative colour.
The Able Label is an innovative womenswear lifestyle clothing brand that designs all styles in house alongside Occupational Therapists and customers and make all our lovely jersey garments within Europe. The range of clothes allow easier dressing for those who like to look good but find high-street fashion too fiddly or awkward to wear. We appreciate that it's often the little things in life that can make the biggest difference so attention to detail is always at the heart of everything we do.
We help to overcome some of the day-to-day issues that can arise when dressing – independence, the desire to remain stylish and to maintain a sense of identity in spite of reduced dexterity and impaired mobility or cognitive skills.
Ease of Dressing
Our clothes have all specifically been designed to make dressing easier. This includes, colour coordinated internals making areas like armholes easier to find as well as touch fastening closures which require minimal strength and no over dressing. Why do we need fiddly button fastenings and to dress items over the head anyway?
All our fabrics and our garments are of the highest quality and made in Europe, with mills and factories known for their expertise in jersey.
All fabrics are machine washable at 40 degrees unless stated otherwise.
Our stylish and versatile clothes are timeless wardrobe essentials that are easy to outfit and can be worn season after season.
Trialled and Tested
Occupational Therapists and people who would benefit from wearing the clothes have all rigorously tested each style.
With all clothing specifically designed to make dressing easier, we are able to offer VAT relief to those it applies to. Find out if you are eligible for VAT relief here.
Convenient Ways to Shop
Whether online, over the phone or by mail order, we have several ways to shop to make things more convenient for you. Shopping on behalf of a friend, relative or someone you care for? Request a catalogue for them by clicking here so they can see the full range.
We offer an express delivery should you need it. Buy and try - not sure if the item is right for you, not a problem as you can return it on us for free. Find out more on our Delivery & Returns page.
Because we Genuinely Care
Founder Katie’s grandmother had Parkinson’s, so she saw first-hand the difficulties her grandmother faced in dressing. Not just for women with Parkinson’s, the clothes are for anyone with dressing difficulties. We are here to help so if you have any questions or want further advice on The Able Label clothing, call the team on 01622 744242.
You can find out more about us on our website About Us page here.
Changing your clothes before and after exercises classes such as yoga or pilates, can be time-consuming, painful and sometimes just impossible. The Able Label brings you a range of clothes that are easier to dress into and out of independently.
However hard you work, enjoy comfortable movement with these exercise suitable styles. We present - Linda Jersey Wrap Top, Maria Jersey Vest and Frankie Straight Leg Trouser that all allow you to have a comfortably chic workout. All made from breathable viscose and with elastane for added stretch and comfort, the garments move with your body. You will be pleased to see they are versatile enough to take you to your exercise class, through your exercise class, from your exercise class and all the way back to your sofa for lounging in effortless style minimising the number of times you may need to change.
Linda Jersey Wrap Top
This wrap style comes in three colours but we love the navy for exercise. The raglan sleeves make getting arms into the armhole easier and also allows more movement when worn. Layer the ‘Maria Jersey Vest’ underneath for the perfect look and for extra coverage.
Maria Jersey Vest
The vest has Velcro front fastening, meaning no overhead dressing. The Velcro itself has a good peel strength making it easier to fasten and unfasten however it has a stronger sheer and tensile strength which means the garment will not come undone through movement. This leaves you free to focus on your workout and not your wardrobe.
Frankie Straight Leg Trousers
These trousers have no fastenings at the waist removing this often fiddly element of dressing. The high waist with roll detail at waistband means you have maximum coverage when moving. There is a long zip at the hem to allow easier access to splints, bandages or catheter bags if needed or to simply create a slightly wider leg. When fastened, the zip is so discreet you would not know it was there.
Fastenings; something used to attach one thing to another firmly.
All sounds very simple, right? Well, we can assure you it isn’t! There are buttons, buckles, clasps, hook and eye, ties, knots, zips, press studs, hook and loops (better known as velcro), toggles, and the list goes on!
Of all fastenings, buttons have endured as the most common way of securing fabric. But to begin with, they were used only as decoration with the buttonhole not being invented until later on. Like the majority of other fastenings out there, buttons are not however always easy to fasten and can in fact be extremely fiddly or impossible to use. This is especially the case if you have numbness, stiffness or pain in your hands restricting movement and fine motor skills.
Attention to Detail
With attention to detail at the heart of all what we do at The Able Label, we got to thinking - what if we could go back to a time where the button was only used for decoration and an alternative fastening be used to avoid the fiddly notion of securing clothes. You name it, we’ve researched it.
All suitable options which could potentially make dressing less fiddly, we have trialled and tested. Having spent over a year and a half developing and perfecting the collection – we quickly narrowed down hook and loop (velcro) as being the most suitable type of fastening for its ease to open and close. In fact, during our market research, nearly 60% found buttons in particular extremely difficult or impossible to fasten whilst 0% had difficulties with hook and loop.
Attention to Quality
Then to finding the best hook and loop fastening out there on the market and we feel we have it. Some of the key features of the hook and loop fastenings we have carefully sourced include:
- the yarns are of such a high quality, as long as carefully maintained following the garments wash care instructions, ensuring the hook and loop are closed when washing, it will last as long as the item of clothing it is used on.
- it has specifically been designed for frequent opening and closing and is also used by the top sportswear retailers.
- it is a softer hook and loop fastening meaning that the fastening is less likely to snag on other items.
- with a good peel strength but high sheer and tensile strength, the open and close motion is easier requiring less strength however will not come undone through wear even if in seated position for long periods of time which would put greater strain on the fastening.
- the fasteners are coloured as part of The Able Label’s ‘EasyFasten’ system. Just match coordinating colours to secure the fastening – lime for left and red for right.
Within the range, we have several styles, which discretely incorporate this hook and loop fastening, giving you the best of both – function and fashion.
Front Fastening - Imogen Jersey Shirt and Maria Jersey Vest
Both the shirt and vest fasten at the front using our premium hook and loop. The shirt has buttons that are simply for decoration and not for use. Being front fastening, there is no need for overhead dressing.
Wrap Fastening - Su Jersey Wrap Dress and Linda Jersey Wrap Top
All wrap styles are securely fastened with the hook and loop. Fastening to the side, the hook and loop had both been coloured to match – lime for left and red for right to make it easier to align and fasten correctly. To look at, you would not realise the wrap styles had been made easier to dress with fiddly fastenings removed.
To find out more, take a look at our website www.theablelabel.com
Otherwise we always love to hear from you and are very happy for you to contact us directly at firstname.lastname@example.org
Whether you are staying at home or visiting family or friends this year, make sure you remain as independent and comfortable as possible whilst looking your best over the Christmas period.
To help, we have put together some suggestions for the most important days - Christmas Eve, Christmas Day and Boxing Day.
Christmas Eve - The Able Label Outfit:
Take it easy in the build up to Christmas Day with this smart yet relaxed look.
Especially if you are away from home, ensure you can still dress safely with these wrap styles that minimise the need to balance as they wrap around you.
Shop the look by clicking on the links below:
Christmas Day - The Able Label Outfit:
Look your best on this special day spent with loved ones and go for a slightly dressier look. Complete the look with this elegant cardi and some beautiful jewellery in matching colours. Take the stress out of getting this necklace on as it is magnetic fastening!
Shop the look by clicking on the links below:
Boxing Day - The Able Label Outfit:
Whether you prefer trousers or skirts, cover up with these sleek styles which all have stretched waistbands for extra comfort... comfort you may need after all the turkey consumed on Christmas Day!
Shop the look by clicking on the links below:
So what ever you are up to this Christmas, ensure you are looking your best but at the same time remain as independent and comfortable as possible with these easier to dress, stylish clothes from The Able Label.
One person every hour is diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease.
Like my Grandmother who was in her 70’s when diagnosed, most people get the disease aged over 50 however younger people can get it too. She is one of 127,000 people in the UK with Parkinson’s as it affects one person in 500.
Tragically, it is a progressive neurological condition, which means she is not going to get better. The disease will not kill her but it will mean that symptoms will only worsen over time.
Parkinson’s is caused when nerve cells inside the brain are killed causing a lack of the chemical, dopamine. Why these cells die is unclear but it can lead several symptoms which will vary from person to person. My Grandmother battles the following physical symptoms daily:
· Slowness of movement
· Rigidity or stiffness, especially after she had stopped for a period of time.
· Shuffling when she walks
· Freezing mid way through tasks which could take up to half an hour to overcome
· Problems sleeping, waking up in the middle of the night, wanting to get up to complete tasks she thought she had forgotten in the day or thinking someone was knocking at the door
· Speech and communication problems came later on as the muscles in her neck weakened making her voice softer and words more difficult to get out
· This also has lead to difficulty swallowing as she now can sadly no longer eat solids
Unlike most with Parkinson’s, she initially had no tremor, which we believe is partly why it took her so long to be diagnosed. Only later on, she acquired a twitch in her neck and slight shakes in her hands when she became more stressed.
She also faces mental symptoms, these include:
· Anxiety as she would constantly worry about tasks she had not done
· Frustration, predominantly caused through the physical symptoms
· Dementia, which came later on and has lead to short-term memory problems. She is not alone with this as up to 80 per cent of those with Parkinson’s develop Parkinson’s dementia
· Hallucination and delusions as she would see things which were not really there like holes in her clothes for example
Currently there are no cures. There are however treatments which can help to maintain quality of life. Drugs can help to restore the level of dopamine and physical therapies can help to manage Parkinson’s through the likes of physiotherapy, speech and language as well as occupational therapy.
My Grandmother gradually became less and less confident going out, aware things like paying at the supermarket checkout, took her longer much to the frustration of other shoppers. Parkinson’s UK empathises with this which is why their campaign this year centred around ‘up your friendly’. They are encouraging everyone to make small changes to their behaviour as it can make the biggest difference to someone living with Parkinson’s disease. This could include putting the kettle on, letting someone go first, holding the door open or like my Grandmother needed, just giving someone the extra time they need without becoming frustrated.
In our case, we are providing Parkinson’s friendly clothes that will be available later this year. Our beautiful clothes inspired by my Grandmother are specifically designed to make dressing easier considering things like stiffness, slowness of movement and shakes. All the things regular clothing fails to consider which as was the case with my Grandmother, can add to frustration and feelings of isolation.
For Parkinson UK’s free and confidential helpline for further help and advice call 0808 800 0303.