This is Vancouver. We'd wear sweatpants or yoga pants everyday if we could.
"We really just want to offer something that has the feeling of sweatpants, but still looks aesthetically like tuxedo pants or formal attire that you can wear to the office, to the gym or at home and just blur the distinction," said Philip Widmer, co-founder of Mamquam technical fashion.
Mamquam is a Swiss-based technical fashion company co-founded by UBC students. They are holding a crowdfunding campaign in early December to build more awareness for their brand. Mamquam also plans to host a small event in the Nest on December 8 to offer UBC students a first-glimpse of the European brand and its products.
Batis Samadian, Deyshawn Moser and Widmer had a long-term idea of trek pants and sweatpants. They visualized stirring up the fashion industry by creating new textile solutions and types of clothing — blurring the distinction between formal and casual.
Widmer and his co-founders wanted to design a product incorporating the Swiss mentality of technical sophistication, the elegance of European design and a product that would embrace the free-spirited nature of life in the Pacific Northwest.
"We have very many goals in mind down the road," said Widmer. "The vision is to embrace this progressive lifestyle of our age and to break these dichotomies of social constructions that are no longer really compatible with our time."
Mamquam's aim is to synthesize fashion and technology. They don't see themselves as a design brand. Their products are well-designed and innovative, but as a functional brand. They make use of new technologies to provide the most convenient, utilitarian aesthetic appeals.
"There are a lot of technologies you don’t see," said Widmer. "There are sweat-absorbing technologies, there’s UV blocking technology, there’s stain-resistant and a quick-drying factor which dries three times quicker than conventional materials."
Technologies and fabric are delivered by a Swiss company – Schoeller Textiles – which make all types of outdoor wear from mining gear to skiing and high-performance gear. Mamquam sources its fabrics from this company because Schoeller Textiles abide by the Bluesign Standard. This means that through all steps of production, the company is focused on environmental health and safety.
Mamquam currently produces their pants in eight colours, but plans to expand in the near future to potentially offer products beyond fashion. They plan to host more events that tie in with art, music and culture in order to open up the platform for recognizing the importance of these domains as well as to raise funds for charities.
“What we have here is the best solution among all competitors. It’s more comfortable, better technology inside, higher design and we’re doing good for people,” said Widmer.