Emily Ladau




Passionate disability rights activist, writer, speaker, and digital communications consultant Emily Ladau began her career at 10-years-old, when she appeared on Sesame Street to educate children about her life with Larsen syndrome, a genetic joint and muscle disorder that causes joint contractures and muscle weakness. A full-time wheelchair user, she needed a blazer that was suitable for business engagements, but also included stretch to accommodate her contracted joints, and an alternative means to fasten her jacket as buttons are difficult to manipulate. She worked with her team to create a jacket that fit well and dressed her for occasions such as appearing on national media outlets and giving keynote addresses at conferences around the country. 


Traditional suit jackets and the physical limitations of my disability don’t mix. Open Style Lab at Parsons made my suit dreams a reality. The program is so important because it teaches students to understand the needs and wants of bodies that don’t conform to mannequins used by typical clothing designers and manufacturers.