Founder Ailbhe Keane named Izzy Wheels after her sister Izzy and started designing funky wheelchairs with colourfully patterned wheel covers. Izzy Wheels has collaborated with some of the most celebrated artists and illustrators creating a unique range of visually beautiful wheel covers. Their latest collaboration is with the iconic print and fashion designer, Orla Kiely. Orla has wonderfully recreated her most famous and recognizable iconic stem motif for the new Izzy Wheels fashion collection.
Izzy Wheels has recently achieved worldwide acclaim after having been covered by Insider for a video. The video received two million views in the first 24 hours and 11 million views in one week.
When asked how Keane came up with the concept, she says, “I came up with Izzy Wheels when I was in my final year of visual communications in the National College of Art and Design. I was inspired by a brief which asked you to empower the lives of people living with a long-term lifestyle-related health condition. Immediately, I thought of my sister Izzy.”
Izzy was born with spina bifida and is paralysed from her waist down. Keane had always wanted to create something that would allow her sister to personalize her wheelchair, and along came Izzy Wheels.
Customized patterned wheels go beyond just adding a funk to how the wheelchairs look, but also make the user more confident about their gear. By making an accessory out of wheelchairs, it helps patients come into their own personalities as well, without feeling self-conscious. “We are building a fashion brand for one of the worlds most underserved communities of people.”
Izzy Wheels plans on expanding further in the future with matching lines of bags, umbrellas and other stylish accessories for every wheel produced. The initiative is a surprisingly simple yet powerful move for a grossly neglected community when it comes to the fashion world. It sends a strong message and call for inclusion to the world.