The store is just a small bridal shop in an English town, but it is having an outsized impact.
Co-owner of The White Collection, Laura Allen, didn’t think twice when she had the idea to place one of her window display mannequins in a wheelchair. But the mannequin — affectionately known in-store as Prunella — caught the eye of artist Beth Wilson, who uses a wheelchair herself.
Seeing disability portrayed so beautifully — or really at all — took her by surprise. It excited her.
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 image soon went viral, and was heaped with praise, as well as inspiring a lot of comments that more shops should do the same. “That’s created this absolute frenzy and this outpouring of messages on this debate that more shops should follow suit,” said Allen’s sister and shop co-owner Sarah Parker. “This shouldn’t be an unusual thing to see in a shop window.”
Prunella has attracted a stream of visitors to the Portishead boutique, who come to take pictures of her, including young girls with wheelchairs. Mother Maria Coehlo, whose 21-year-old daughter has been in a wheelchair for four years, said the display had given them something to celebrate. “I just thought how incredible, how amazing, at last,” she said. “Someone has just normalized that wheelchair and that normalizes my daughter.”
Read the full story at NPR.