Crafting ethical and non-toxic childrenswear was a top priority for new Mama Corina Muir when she launched Amber Days after the birth of her daughter. Combining her background in photography with a scholarship to Billy Blue College, Amber Days was born in 2018 and debuts at TVM this Sunday as our StartUp Stall recipient.
Tell us about your background?
Prior to launching Amber Days, I worked in environment and community organisations. I love this kind of work but after 10 years it can really wear you down and it is definitely an area where you do have to sacrifice a lot.
After leaving high school, I studied photography. Motivated by environmental justice and inspired by ethical fashion I shot my final folio mostly using vintage clothing or ethical brands. I then moved to Sydney after receiving a scholarship to Billy Blue College for fashion design. After 5 months in Sydney, I missed my family too much so I moved back to Melbourne.
In between my work in community, I would plot away at working on my label which at the time was an ethical yoga wear label.
What made your pursue your creative passion?
I gave birth to my beautiful daughter in 2016, and Amber Days was also born. I have always been passionate about the environment and people so when falling pregnant with my daughter, finding clothing that didn’t use harmful chemicals in their processes was really important to me.
After doing some research into the fashion industry and the toxins and practices used, I was pretty terrified. This really reinforced the importance of transparency in the fashion industry and buying from designers that use organic fabrics that have been dyed with non toxic dyes and produced ethically.
When did you take the plunge and start your own business?
The real push was when I had my daughter and I went back to work. She came with me to work which I am grateful for but I found the whole work system not set up for mothers. It was then that I decided to take the leap and launch Amber Days.
What does your brand consist of?
Amber Days is a Melbourne based ethical children’s wear label that is inspired by the Australian bush, desert and sea. Amber Days is made for mindful, adventurous, free spirited little ones, who are the next generation of change makers.
Amber Days consists of ethical and sustainable hand made baby and children's clothing. We have essentials for everyday wear and a few seasonal pieces all made out of quality natural fibres. Our hand made garments are made to last and wear to their full potential. We believe that there is nothing more special than being able to pass down your favourite garment to your next child or generation to come especially when that garment holds onto so many beautiful memories.
Where is the label designed and made?
Amber Days is designed in Melbourne and hand made in Melbourne. I also source all my trimmings from a little shop in Melbourne and the essentials range is printed on GOTS certified organic cotton which is knitted and printed in Melbourne. Supporting local small business is really important to me.
The fabric used in our essential range are designed by different Aboriginal Women. This range we collaborated with the beautiful Lara, Worimi mother and artist behind Yukul Art.
What inspires you?
My daughter Sapphire is my biggest inspiration. Her creativity and love for life is just the most inspiring thing in the world. I am also constantly inspired by the bush, desert and sea, my family, friends and by my culture. These are things that give me the most inspiration.
What are your plans for the brand and where do you hope it takes you?
I hope that my business can grow to support a community of women and mothers and also inspire other women to follow their dreams! I really love creating beautiful, ethical clothing for little ones so I hope that my brand can continue to grow enough for it to be able to sustain me and my daughter <3
What were the biggest challenges when launching your brand?
The biggest challenge I found when launching my label was having the confidence to believe in myself and my brand. It is also just really challenging doing everything as ethically and as sustainably as you can. Fashion will never be sustainable unless we start shopping second hand and don't produce anything again which is so extreme so it's just working out the best way to do things with as little impact on the environment and supporting the people that are doing the right thing.
What is the best thing about having your own business?
The best thing about having my own business is the freedom it brings to be a present mum to my daughter. There is so many pressures in our modern world for mums to be a full time stay at home mum and to also work full time and this is obviously quite challenging as being in two places is impossible. It is really empowering to be a single mum, be able to financially support my child and be a present mum! And doing this in an ethical, sustainable way that supports other women to do so to, is just the best feeling.