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Armo Design creates sustainable, fair and socially responsible clothing

Published on 22.3.2023
Tampere University of Applied Sciences
Mountain with clouds in the sky.
Chimborazo Volcano in Ecuador.
Armo Design is an ethical fashion brand founded by three Proakatemia students. The project is driven by strong social and environmental values with the mindset that big changes start from small actions. Armo Design’s future plans include opening a physical store in Tampere and expanding the business into new international markets.

The idea of Armo Design was born in February 2022 during an innovation workshop in Proakatemia. What started as an idea, turned into a concept, and developed into a business plan.  Armo Design’s goals are to ensure that workers throughout the supply chain are treated fairly and paid a living wage. The key values are to provide transparency about the sourcing and production of products to consumers, raise awareness about ethical fashion and encourage consumers to make more conscious purchasing decisions.

From idea into business

Students Omar Puebla, Xiaoqing Yang-Pyydysmäki and Maria Jussila are behind the fashion brand Armo Design. The project has lasted now for one year. The students have designed their own products, for example tote bags, bracelets and wool ponchos. The materials come from Ecuador and the products are also hand-made in Ecuador. The idea is to sell the products in Finland.

“We strongly believe in the importance of helping people in developing countries. We recognise that these countries often lack the resources and infrastructure necessary to support their citizens and promote economic growth. That's why we've made it our mission to support those in need. By working to improve conditions in developing countries, we can foster greater stability, reduce the risk of conflict, and create new economic opportunities,“ Omar says.

Wool poncho.
Wool poncho.

Team learning basis of the project

Omar and Xiaoqing began their studies at Proakatemia in 2020 and Maria in 2021. They all agree that Proakatemia has been one of the best experiences for them. The teaching pillars at Proakatemia are self-learning, team learning and company learning.

“We are very aware that the study approach at Proakatemia is very different from the traditional university and other international business programmes. Thanks to the team learning approach, we have been able to advance in this project. Each of us understands the importance of working as a team to move forward, and a tool we use frequently is reflection. We often reflect deeply on what went well, what went wrong, what we learned, and what we can improve in the project, in the team and personally,” Omar emphasises.

Making the world a better place

The future plans of Armo Design include opening a physical store in Tampere and expanding business to other countries in Europe. The goal is to work with more suppliers from different developing countries.

“We want people to feel that they are part of the change. We want to create more sustainable and equitable fashion industry that benefits everyone involved, from workers and suppliers to consumers and the planet. We are committed to do our part in making the world a better place, and we invite anyone who shares our values to join us in this important work,” Omar concludes.

Read more about Armo Design:

Text: Riikka Mölkänen

Pictures: The archive of Armo Design