Amble - Sustainable Activewear Made From Recycled Materials

Amble

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Location

Australia

Made In

Hong Kong | Indonesia

Values

  • Certified Organic Certified Organic
  • Circularity Circularity
  • Fair Fair
  • Gender Equality Gender Equality
  • Give Back Give Back
  • Vegan Vegan

We like our brands like we like our tofu: firm (in their beliefs), harm-free (for people and the environment), and aesthetically pleasing (because we’re only human). Also in a honey soy marinade but that’s just completely irrelevant. Amble is one of the brands that stay true to all of these values, and despite their growing popularity they’re still sticking to their OG ethics.

Amble is an activewear brand for the ethical and sustainable soul. The beautiful designs that come out of their factory are whimsical and dreamy, and more often than not you will find stars and patterns lacing the bras, tights, and jackets they produce. Let’s just say that if you want to look absolutely fabulous on that speed walk or feel like you’re floating through space with George and Sandra when you’re watching Gravity then this brand is 100% for you.

The garments produced under the Amble name are made from recycled plastic water bottles. The reason behind this is so less plastic enters our oceans and landfills and more get put to better use (like giving consumers kickass, fashionable clothing that’ll last them through countless workouts or days binging Netflix). This is also less energy intensive than the creation of synthetic fibers, so it is actually helping the environment in a lot more ways than one.

They even give us a play by play of how the plastic bottles get turned into the leggings! The bottles are collected for recycling; the caps are removed; the bottles are colour-sorted and sterilised to remove nasties; they are dried and shredded into small flakes; they are then melted down and squeezed into yarn; the yarn is spun into thread and the thread is woven into fabric; and voila, the fabric is cut and sewn to create the Amble goodies. Is that some grand old innovation or what?

This is also a young company ensuring all aspects of their supply chain are adhering to fair practices. Amble only employs makers who the team have personally met, and they visit them every year to ensure their workplace standards are consistently being met. The fabric for their activewear is made in Hong Kong and the garment manufacturing is done in Badung, and all makers receive a wage above the legal minimum, superannuation, healthcare benefits and paid leave. Is that out-of-this-world or what?

What’s incredible about Amble is their commitment to transparency, and their desire to continue to be as eco-friendly in their practices as possible. They acknowledge the bad choices we as human beings have made and are trying to rectify this by turning plastic trash into activewear treasure in as ethical a way as is humanly possible. We love you, Amble.

Want to know where Amble sits and what they’re working on in terms of these 5 values? Hover over these values to find out.

Behind the Brand

“I set out to create a brand that encouraged women to get outdoors and adventure, one that was inspirational yet relatable, inclusive and accessible, and ensured it had as minimal impact as possible”.

Rhianna Knight

What made you start Amble?

I was hiking in Patagonia, in the midst of a 5 day solo trek in Torres Del Paine, one of the most beautiful places in the world, whilst wearing some of the ugliest clothes in the world. Not only were they aesthetically awful and ruining my photos, more importantly they were made from conventional synthetics, which I knew are incredibly environmentally damaging, and with my background in fashion I knew it was possible to create technical clothes that didn’t compromise on style or sustainability. And so I set out to create a brand that encouraged women to get outdoors and adventure, one that was inspirational yet relatable, inclusive and accessible and ensured it had as minimal impact as possible.

Do you have a morning routine? If so, what is it you do to set yourself up for the day ahead?

Hmm, occasionally I do. I’ve recently gone through a yoga phase which creates a really great space to start the day with clear thoughts, but I love to jump around between activities so I think it’s time for something new. The longer I can spend off my phone in the morning the better, although it’s difficult being connected 24/7 with the business. The day always starts with coffee and handwritten to do lists, though.

What’s the biggest barrier you’ve found to succeeding as a socially conscious business?

The largest difficulties are within finances and brand awareness. We’re trying to compete with established larger businesses that are able to make their product incredibly cheap because their highest priority is low cost, rather than ensuring everyone is looked after within the supply chain. Add this together with their enormous marketing budgets it become really difficult to compete for both awareness and the customers purchase. It’s definitely challenging to balance the large minimum order quantities with cashflow as a small brand whilst trying to grow, which is why it’s always so incredible when other people share your brand for you.

Within the ethical fashion community, there’s a big question that we ask which is ‘who made my clothes?’. In the scope of Amble, who made the things you sell? Can you tell us a bit about them?

Sure thing. Who Made My Clothes is an incredible initiative from fashion revolution and one that is embedded within the business’ values, making sure both people and planet are looked after, rather than just focusing solely on profit. All prints and products are designed in Melbourne by myself and all manufacturing happens overseas, with different product lines created with different manufacturers based off their areas of expertise. Our Activewear fabric is made in Hong Kong and garments made in Indonesia, our Tech Jacket fabric is made in Taiwan and garments made in China and our Organic Cotton fabric and garments are both made in India. Prior to working with any manufacturers we go through quite an intensive process to ensure we’re supporting workplaces that are happy, healthy and safe and we also go and visit all manufacturers once a year to just pop in and say hi.

Why did you pick the fabrics you have chosen to work with?

We’ve chosen to work with the fabrics we have as we felt they were the best blend of what we wanted, balancing the highest performance together with the lowest environmental impact and best in terms of sustainability. We use fabrics made from recycled plastic bottles to create our Activewear and Tech Jackets, that are 78% and 48% recycle respectively, by utilising these recycled fabrics not only are we saving plastics from oceans and landfill, we’re also reducing the amount of oil to create fabric and use significantly less energy to create the fabric in the process. Our organic cotton collection is GOTS certified 100% organic cotton, we’d love to transition to a recycled cotton however it’s not viable based off our current order size just yet.

Best piece of advice you have ever received?

I’m not particularly spiritual and started initially yoga for knee rehab but have since become hooked. Once during savasana the teacher said that we’re all made of stardust. This simple line really resonated and to me it means that anything and everything is possible, we’re all human beings and you have the ability and possibility to create as much as the next person, there’s endless possibilities, it’s just up to you to focus your energy and passion.

What’s next for you and Amble?

My focus is 130% on Amble and growing it into an established brand. We’ll slowly expand our product range, but always stay more sustainably made. The goal is to create apparel to encourage women to get outdoors and adventure, so we’ll keep testing the best way to do this. In a couple of months we’ll be introducing an expanded range of activewear, including the long awaited for bike shorts just in time for summer activities.

One book and/or documentary everyone should read/watch? Why?

I’m going to cheat and give three books here. Let My People Go Surfing by Yvon Chouinard, founder of the Patagonia brand, Chapter One by Daniel Flynn, founder of Thankyou, and Shoedog by Phil Knight, founder of Nike. All three books are incredibly inspirational and educational, showing all the gritty details of their journeys and how they’re created something of impact within the world.

Are there any other Movers & Shakers out there in your world that you think people should know about?

Oh there’s so many, I think a scroll through EME is the best place to get inspired! A business doing incredible things is Humanism, creating dignified employment for marginalised communities in India, Sakshi’s on a pretty great mission to change the world!

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