Member Spotlight: Ambar
UKFT member Ambar is a homeware brand and textile development studio based in London with a focus on knits and innovative, structural fabrications. Founded by Natalia Nicolau, it stems from her background in fashion and a decade’s experience in developing textiles for brands in Brazil – her country of origin – and the UK. Her degree in architecture is also instrumental throughout all research and creative processes.
At the beginning of the Ambar journey, Natalia made a decision to carry out her design and manufacturing solely in the UK. She trusted that the British tradition in textiles – both in technical terms, and also in raw material sourcing – would ensure she reached a level of quality and craftsmanship that elevates each and every one of her creations.
Drawing inspiration from traditional textile techniques such as hand-weaving and embroidery, the team are always on a quest for innovative materials and fabrications so each project starts with extensive research. Although the knits are machine-made, Ambar focuses on slow design and development, and every product has artisanal look and feel to them – as well as an artisanal scale of production – skillfully blending modern technology with craft.
Ambar makes a point of learning the origin of every yarn they use, and what solutions each supplier offers to reduce or eliminate the impact each fibre processing stage brings to the environment. This knowledge structures the whole approach to design and enables responsible decisions to be made throughout the prototyping and production processes.
Alongside the Ambar collections, Natalia collaborates with Artists and Illustrators to create limited edition designs on a small scale; applying their signature artworks to the Ambar textile structures to give each Designer an alternative and often unexpected platform for their work.
Natalia also consults for interiors projects, designing print and surface pattern, and manufacturing bespoke pieces for hospitality, as well as commercial and residential properties. Exciting new collaborations include a capsule collection with Craig & Karl, a tattoo-inspired scarf with Illustrator Mariana Ou, and a baby blanket with Illustrator Sandra Javera.
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Ambar is a UKFT member. Interested in UKFT membership? Find out more here.