Fashion Follows Form: Designs for Sitting | Level 4

Open June 21, 2014 to January 25, 2015
Patricia Harris Gallery of Textiles & Costume, Level 4

Fashion Follows Form: Designs for Sitting is an exhibition that invites visitors to think critically about the relationship between function and fashion in our daily lives. The history of western fashion is a sequence of changing shapes that often favours form over function and comfort. IZAdaptive (2009-present), by Canadian designer Izzy Camilleri, is a revolutionary line of fashionable and functional clothing for the growing demographic of men and women who use wheelchairs. The exhibit contextualizes these innovative garments within Camilleri’s oeuvre and historical 18th-19th century fashions also designed for a seated, L-shaped frame.

Fashion Follows Winning Form

The ROM’s Fashion Follows Form exhibition has won The Richard Martin Exhibition Award by unanimous decision. One of the jurors referred to the exhibition theme as one of “social justice and human rights.”  The exhibition’s text was also recognized as beautifully written and respectful of the audience.

Izzy Camilleri
Fashion Designer
Alexandra Palmer
Senior Curator

Honorary Exhibition Chairs

Jeanne Beker
TV personality, columnist
Barbara Turnbull
Activist, journalist

Exhibition Contributors

Maayan Ziv
Luke Anderson
Joel Dembe
Carolyn Pioro
Joanne Smith



Common Thread, by Bell Local Toronto

Additional Canadian Resources:

Additional International Resources:

Exhibition Patron                                            Media Partner

ELIZABETH TORY                                     


Centennial Government Partners

OntarioOCAF: Ontario Cultural Attractions Fund



Comment by Marion Seamone

Have been waiting a long time to see fashion for chair to keep the cost at a level that chair users can afford. Thank you soooo much.

Comment by Alexandra Palme...

The great thing is IZ Adaptive is affordable - see the line's website. It is truly accessible design - to put on, to wear and to purchase.

Comment by Alexandra Palme...

The great thing is this line as accessble - to put on, to wear AND to afford

Comment by patsy short

I saw this on the internet and was inspired by the dedication of Issy Camilleri to the disabled and the commitment of Alex Palmer to tell this story and link it with riding fashions and fashion history. I showed my husband, who has lymphedema in one arm, and he was very taken with it. He can't fit any of his clothes now, and remarked that no longer being able to wear his Italian suit was just one more door slammed in his face. This is a really innovative event and I wish I could attend (I live in Australia)! Congratulations to the ROM!