Sunday, August 21, 2011

Stylin' in Cardboard?!

Good day Rett Girls! Today we have a guest blogger! Stefanie Gutierrez gives us the scoop on her daughter's new adapted chair....made from cardboard!


After receiving Anna’s adaptive stroller and feeding system earlier this year, we were at a crossroads, as most of my fellow Rett-mama’s can relate to. We were thankful for the chair that would help keep Anna nice and straight and position her really well, but we were sad that she spent most of her days in it. Anna is non-ambulatory and can’t sit on her own.

So she had breakfast in it. Then her morning therapy sessions. Then her snack. Then lunch. Then dinner then….

What happened when she just wanted to watch television with her brother, Gabriel? When she just wanted to “read” a book with us or “color” on her iPad? If we weren’t able to hold her, she was in that blessed chair that we were all – including Anna – sick of.

We were looking around for a relaxing chair… A lounge chair of sorts that Anna could just relax in and she knew was just for her down time. I had heard bean bags were great options for some.

I kept thinking about when Gabe was three, and how he had this little red Ikea chair. Anna should have something like that, too, I thought.

Enter Adaptive Design. Dr. Sasha at the Rett Syndrome Clinic at Montefiore had suggested it at one of our prior appointments. After a quick phone call, we had a very informal get-together with Antoinette, one of the brains behind the project. It seems she can create anything you’d like out of any possible reusable material on the planet. We walked in and they had an entire showroom full of chairs of any kind – think rocking chairs to high chairs to booster chairs – all made out of 100% cardboard.

We explained to Antoinette the desire for this lounging chair we had in mind and she immediately grasped what we were going for. Within a week they had built a chair for Anna out of cardboard. It has a pummel to keep her positioned correctly and a Velcro wrap keeps her upright. A tray fits in the front. The cherry on top? A local artist who donates their time and talents to Adaptive Design painted the chair in colors of Anna’s choice and her favorites… Think purple, butterflies, flowers, ladybugs. It was delivered a few weeks later and it is her relaxing chair. Exactly what we wanted.

Take some time to check out their website:


Thank you for sharing Stefanie! If you would like to share something with all the Rett Girls out there, send me your story!

Terri V. for RettGirl

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