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These Artsy Prosthetic Leg Covers Are Amazing

Curators’ corner

These Artsy Prosthetic Leg Covers Are Amazing

Art is limitless. From music therapy for the elderly to the many studies revealing visual art’s positive effects on the human brain, there truly are no boundaries to the impact that creativity can have on our daily lives. Here’s the latest example:

Alleles is pioneering the art of prosthetic fashion. The Canadian design studio sells stylish, ready-to-wear prosthetic leg covers ranging from bright and bold to chic and elegant. The brainchild of artist McCauley Wanner, who conceived the idea for her senior thesis at the University of Calgary in 2011, and Ryan Palibroda, Alleles is completely disrupting the traditional view on prosthetics.

“Everything on the market to date is trying to hide the fact that someone is missing a limb,” Wanner told Mashable. “It actually does the opposite of what one might expect. It automatically applies a stigma to a device, which is what we are trying to remove.”

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PHOTO CREDIT: ALLELES DESIGN STUDIO

The Alleles shells are made of flexible plastic, with leather straps to secure them in place. Customers input their prosthetic measurements on the Alleles website to ensure the proper fit, and while there is certainly no shortage of cool designs, they also have the option to order a custom cover. Pricing ranges from $325 CAD to $700 CAD.

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PHOTO CREDIT: ALISON ANDERSON

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PHOTO CREDIT: KELLY MARTELL

“There are options for amputees when it comes to prosthesis covers, but what sets the Alleles apart is the affordable price point, durability and cool designs,” Alleles customer Michelle Salt told Mashable. “My first cover was this awesome floral design. I remember thinking, ‘I’m a snowboarder. This is not me.’ But then McCauley put me in this cute dress and a pair of heels and I realized I had been missing the feminine side of me that the covers were bringing out again.”

37-year-old Scotti Trinler, whose leg was amputated above the knee, said that people now ask him questions about the cool cover rather than just staring awkwardly.

Palibroda, Alleles’ technology director, feels a shift in the relationship between fashion and prosthetics.

“We always thought fashion can really influence what’s going on in prosthetics,” he told Mashable. “But now we can take what we have done with prosthetics and start influencing fashion…We want to blur the line between prosthetics and fashionable clothing.”

It’s always inspiring to see a company using art to make a difference in the world. Hats off to Alleles for their unique perspective, uplifting mission, and flawless execution.

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