The season for back-to-school shopping is upon us and Target has stepped in to make the experience a little easier for the parents of children with autism and other sensory sensitivities. On August 13th, the brand launched a sensory-friendly clothing line, as part of their Design for All initiative. The fall clothing line, available exclusively at target.com (and yes, there is international shipping), features 16 pieces added to the Cat & Jack collection. There are also plans to expand the brand to include clothing that fits the needs of all children with disabilities.
Target designer, Stacey Monsen, whose daughter has autism, worked with a team of designers to create the sensory-friendly pieces—all of which are free of tags, seams, and textured graphics, which can cause discomfort to sensory-sensitive kids. Monsen consulted with both parents of children with special needs and organizations that work with the special-needs community to help with the design of the clothing.
"We learned that sensory-friendly apparel can mean different things for different people. For these pieces, we decided to start with our core tees and legging and address guests' most common requests—like removing tags and embellishments that can irritate the skin. We also added more ease through the hip and a higher rise in our leggings to fit with diapers, if needed, for older kids," explained Monsen.
Julie Guggemos, Target's senior vice president of Product Design & Development, loved what the team had come up with. "When the group showed us their ideas, it was exciting that they recognized this need in an undeserved market and did the research to understand what our guests wanted. It fit Target's philosophy of making sure all guests feel welcome and included, and we knew Cat & Jack was the perfect place to start," said Guggemos.
We couldn't be happier to see brands like Target offering more inclusive clothing lines. Well done!