Every piece of Christina Stephens is considered. From its environmental impact, to where a pressure sore might occur, to what fabric combination will rock your body (in a good way!)
When Christina Stephens first launched, its mission was to give women with disability and dexterity challenges more choice with their wardrobe, and more voice to be included and heard regarding their fashion desires. The core of this has not changed.
However, just like an idea, our mission has grown…
Christina Stephens exists to disrupt disability stereotypes. Our colourful and elevated designs, combined with smart innovations, has turned adaptive clothing on its head. We're the brand that allows people with disability, dexterity issues, and changing bodies to wear what they want, not what they're given.
Christina Stephens was conceived after Founder Jessie Sadler’s mum had a fall and damaged her elbows. The injury prevented her from dressing with ease in her usual classy and understated style. Twenty per cent of the population live with a disability, yet Jessie found the proportion of beautiful, quality, and on-trend fashion available, was vastly lacking.
And so, Christina Stephens was born…
“I wanted to create a label that sounded like a designer label, not one that reminded customers of functional or clinical clothing. My mum’s name is Christine and my dad’s name is Stephen. The combination of names is just a little something that makes my business even more personal to me.”
Jessie launched Christina Stephens in March 2020, just as COVID-19 was escalating. But despite unprecedented barriers, the label has gone from strength to strength, gracing runways at Australian Fashion Week, Brisbane Fashion Month, and London Fashion Week, co-chairing panels on diversity and inclusion and being featured on ABC, 7News, SBS, Studio 10, in Harper’s Bazaar, Elle, and a number of disability-focused podcasts. We also increased our size range due to customer demand.
In August 2021, we reached another milestone, launching on Australia and New Zealand’s biggest online retailer THE ICONIC as part of their Adaptive Edit. Then in December 2021, Christina Stephens announced it was opening a menswear range, with the introduction of short and long sleeve, prism-back t-shirts.
In April 2022, Carol Taylor, the world’s first quadriplegic fashion designer joined the team as Co-Owner and Lead Designer. Carol brought a splash of colour and glamour to the label, which evolved from a one-woman show to a team of fabulous women. Soon after Carol joined the team, Christina Stephens made history, being one of two labels featured on Australian Fashion Week's first-ever adaptive clothing runway.
In March 2023 the much-anticipated "Unwrapped" Collection was launched. A spectacular fusion of glamour and spunk, with specific consideration of durability, temperature control, pressure sores, dexterity and sensory challenges and easy access, Unwrapped is designed specifically for prosthesis wearers, quadriplegics, paraplegics, and people who are part-time or permanently in a seated position.
WHAT THEY'RE SAYING
I love Christina Stephens. They keep me dressed so comfortably so I can do what I do best.
WHAT THEY'RE SAYING
Undressing at the end of day when I'm exhausted, is not my finest hour, however it couldn't be easier with the leaf back shirt.
WHAT THEY'RE SAYING
Awash with innovative design and bold colours, Christina Stephens' collections make clear people with disability deserve to be seen
The concept of sustainability was embedded into our business ethos and daily operations well before it became a buzzword in the fashion industry. We’re acutely aware of the damage of fast fashion, which is why our products are made to be ‘lifers’. Everything we do at Christina Stephens, we do with a green earth in mind. From the small things like operating without an on-site printer, testing new processes that reduce the amount of fabric we use during sampling, to designing packaging that can be up cycled, broken down and reused.
We’ve also partnered with AirRobe, so you too can do your bit and give your Christina Stephens clothes new life, once you’re finished with it.