Design & Style

Get ready for P.E Nation’s next sustainable fashion collection.

7 May 2020

P.E Nation is making big moves in ethical fashion this year, starting with an eco-friendly snow collection.

Design & Style

Get ready for P.E Nation’s next sustainable fashion collection.

7 May 2020

P.E Nation is making big moves in ethical fashion this year, starting with an eco-friendly snow collection.

(L) Two women posing in front of a rust and mustard coloured sofa. (R) A woman posing in P.E Nation activewear.

(Left) Claire Tregoning and Pip Edwards have become champions of the sustainable fashion movement in Australia. (Right) Up to 80 per cent of P.E Nation’s collection will be sustainably produced by the middle of 2020. Images: Supplied.

When P.E Nation launches its snow collection later in 2020, it will reputedly be the first fully sustainable snow wear on offer.

This is no small feat, says the label’s co-founder Pip Edwards.

“It’s a lot of back-end work, a lot of training up our suppliers and training our staff. There are implications on price point, but we are so committed this is what we’re going to do,” she says.

P.E Nation was launched in 2016 by Sydney designers and best friends Pip Edwards and Claire Tregoning, who worked together at sass & bide and bring impressive fashion pedigree to the label.

It developed from a “universal need for multi-faceted activewear, given the global shift towards juggling a fast-paced life”.

Global reach

Fast forward four years and P.E Nation is now stocked in hundreds of premium boutiques and department stores around the world, with a mix of technical activewear, '90s streetwear, snow gear, footwear and accessories.

The fashion label is also on a journey to produce conscious fashion that is better for the environment.

“We are an outdoor brand, born and raised on a coastal lifestyle, and if we don’t have that respect for the land and the future it’s not worth even talking about what our brand does,” Edwards says.

According to the UN Alliance for Sustainable Fashion, the clothing and textile industry is one of the most polluting industries in the world, responsible for eight to 10 per cent of global greenhouse emissions and 20 per cent of industrial wastewater pollution.

Brands with a sustainable mindset are focused on more than environmental issues – they are also committed to improving worker conditions and remuneration.

Edwards says a growing number of labels are moving to more sustainable practices, an effort that is being embraced by consumers.

“By July in 2020, 80 per cent of our collection will be sustainable. If we can’t get it done sustainably, we won’t produce it.”

Sustainability and innovation

P.E Nation utilises factories around the world and a full in-house design team. The brand is committed to ensuring sustainable business practices are followed across its supply chain. This includes sourcing recycled fabrics, relying on accredited ethical manufacturers and using biodegradable packaging.

Along the way, Edwards and Tregoning have been educating and training their factories and suppliers to join them in their efforts.

P.E Nation is also a member of Sedex, Australian Trusted Trader and Ethical Trading Initiative (ETI), an organisation that is focused on improving ethical and responsible business practices across global supply chains.

The label’s first sustainable release, an athleisure collection called STRIKE SET, featured fabric pioneered in Italy from regenerated nylon. By the end of 2020, all base active leggings will be designed from recycled or regenerated fabrics, and cottons produced by P.E. Nation will be organic. The brand will also introduce rPET (material made from post-consumer waste plastic drink bottles) into its designs.

The future

Looking ahead, Edwards and Tregoning are focused on innovating with alternative materials such as hemp and seaweed.

“As the world gets more conscious the options are greater, so it is actually really exciting,” says Edwards. “I can’t wait to see what we come up with, especially at this time where we’re all in confinement and we have to think outside the box. I think we’ll end up using some materials that we’ve never even thought of.”

By Jessica Gabites