Beth Wilson, who is disabled, took to Twitter to share a photo of the display, which she noticed while passing the White Collection Bridal Boutique in Bristol. And although she gave the store kudos for creating the only display of its kind that she has seen, she emphasized that it shouldn’t be so exceptional.
The new wedding shop in town has a wheelchair using mannequin and it shouldn’t be exciting but it’s the first time I’ve ever seen disability portrayed in a shop window. pic.twitter.com/N5sco2fLJf
— Beth Wilson (@doodlebeth) January 9, 2019
The tweet garnered thousands of responses similar to her own, with people using the opportunity to encourage other retailers to take note.
This is fab! If only more bridal shops showed this level of inclusivity
— VintageWeddingPhotos (@VintageWPhotos) January 9, 2019
This is great to see, wheelchair users do get married and wear wedding dresses. More of this please.
— Rosemary Frazer (@RosemaryFrazer) January 9, 2019
Thank you for posting – this is amazing, but as you say, it really shouldn't be!!
— poweredbylove (@poweredbylove2) January 9, 2019
Wilson didn’t immediately reply to Yahoo Lifestyle’s request for comment, but she told Cosmopolitan that the tableau resonated with her because it captured the importance of feeling seen.
“It was so surprising to see and made me feel represented,” Wilson said. “So often, disabled people feel invisible because we don’t see ourselves in the media much, and especially not modeling beautiful clothes.”
In addition to the disabled bride, Wilson said, the ivy decorating the wheelchair helped cast the vehicle in a positive light.
“Mobility aids are often portrayed as negative things that people want to hide, when actual mobility aids like wheelchairs give us freedom,” she said. “It’s great that they decorated the chair rather than try and hide it away.”
The White Collection’s owner Laura Allen tells Yahoo Lifestyle, “We are thrilled that our window has been getting such a positive response. Our thoughts of having one of [the mannequins] in a wheelchair was ‘why not?’ And we didn’t really think too much about it. We haven’t shared any images of the window or spoken about it at all, but the window seems to have spoken for itself! We have loved the positive comments from passersby and hope it means other retail outlets follow suit.”
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