For many of us who require bathroom aids and devices in order to stay at the top of our mobility game, let’s face it, they can hinder our style as much as they help make our lives easier.
It’s not secret that mobility aids are known for being pretty bland, boring and sterile in terms of the way they look – who really wants that as an accessory?! I certainly didn’t.
There are ways, however, that you can brighten up your bathroom aids so that they suit your style just as much as they suit your ability. Here’s how.
Step One: Pick your bathroom aids
Be it a toilet frame, seat raiser or a bath board, pick out the aid you want to ‘funk up’. I’d suggest starting small as the more confident you get with your artistic skills, the more ambitious you can be with your aids! A disabled toilet seat shouldn’t be rushed choice!
Step Two: Think of your design
Will sunflowers make you feel like summer is just around the corner? Are modern stripes going to change your bathroom aids into fashionable furniture? Thinking of your design, and how it will fit with your style and surroundings is an important second step.
Step Three: Find paint and/or crafty materials
Quite possibly the most important step; whatever paints and materials you choose will need to fit with what your bathroom aids are made of, and the amount of wear and tear they get. If your toilet frame is plastic and you’re wanting to stick sequins onto it to make it a disco frame (great idea, by the way!), then you will need to find glue that is suitable for plastic. Similarly, you are going to have to choose waterproof paints for your bath board, or outdoor paints and materials for any devices that you might also use when you go camping. Picking the right paints and materials for you will ensure that your arty efforts don’t go to waste and your design lasts as long as possible!
Step Four: Get creative!
This bit is the fun bit! Get creative and ENJOY IT! You might even want to have a bathroom aids designing party and invite over some friends to help. I did!
…And if art isn’t for you:
There are many companies out there who are now (thankfully!) starting to ensure that the mobility and bathroom aids that they make are also aids that disabled people will feel stylish using. Disability Horizon’s Carrie Webster had this to say about one company in question: CoolCrutches.
CoolCrutches was set up in 2005 after the founders had used NHS crutches and wanted to design crutches for comfort and style. According to its founders:
‘We decided to start CoolCrutches to give those injured another option: no more sore hands, solid and robust, yet lightweight, silent, and NOT GREY! We understand how hard it is to have to walk on crutches, whether for a broken leg or a permanently disabling condition. Under-arm and NHS crutches give you sore hands, click and make you look and feel disabled…..and they’re grey! We decided to start CoolCrutches to offer another option. Our crutches come in nine different colours: black, pink, purple, black and white spots, green, blue and white spots, leopard print, stone spots on cream and blue. They have a washable, removeable neoprene squidgy grip which moulds to left and right hands and makes walking a lot more comfortable. They are a quality product, robust, solid and lightweight. CoolCrutches are a full cuff crutch but the cuff can be removed to make an open arm cuff if preferred. We also offer a bespoke service for your own designs.’
Since finding this website, I have brought four different pair of crutches. My very first purchase was the bright hot pink pair of crutches. A year later, I brought the animal print pair, and in the last few months, I have brought two – yes two – pairs of crutches, using my own designs, one hot pink animal print and one multi-coloured print, which I will call my ‘disco’ crutches.
After reading this information about Cool Crutches, I also used it to design my own bathroom aids. I use a walking frame to help me to transfer on and off the toilet seat, and the method and aim is the same, regardless of if you are using crutches for mobility or wanting to spice up a bathroom aid, as I did. My walking bathroom aid is now covered in reindeers, stars and flowers, and although it was my first try and I need many more attempts to make my bathroom aids really stand out in terms of their artistic value, I’m definitely getting there!
So there you have it. Bathroom aids certainly don’t have to look boring. Brighten up yours today!