The catwalk with a difference: adaptive fashion comes to Azerbaijan

Global development

The catwalk with a difference: adaptive fashion comes to Azerbaijan

An enterprising student and a designer want to make attractive clothes that disabled people can wear – and model too

Models at the Kekalove adaptive fashion show in Baku (from left): Fatima Akbarli; Amir with his brother Abbas; and Khayala Bayramly.

Models at the Kekalove adaptive fashion show in Baku (from left): Fatima Akbarli; Amir with his brother Abbas; and Khayala Bayramly.

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Words and pictures by Ismayil Fataliyev in Baku

Thu 15 Sep 2022 02.30 EDTLast modified on Thu 15 Sep 2022 08.27 EDT

Zinyet Veliyeva took her first trip down the catwalk at the age of 48, dressed in a light blue shirt and dark trousers. Hasan, her eight-year-old son, pushed her wheelchair.

“I watched videos from previous shows,” says Veliyeva. “Most of the models were slim and I said to myself why not have one thick model.”

When she was still at school, Veliyeva had a stroke that led to paraparesis, the partial loss of movement in the legs. She became Azerbaijan’s first paralympic female athlete, qualifying for the 2012 London Paralympics in archery.

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