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Denver, CO

August 16, 2019 | Andrew Hurst

Church camps and retreats are almost a guaranteed opportunity for a free shirt. Unfortunately, these shirts often end up in the back of closets, reserved as “sleep shirts” or worn when you don’t anticipate running into anyone you know.

Fashion designer, Jeremy Picker, is well acquainted with some of the free apparel given out during church functions having grown up as a pastor’s kid (PK) in Arizona.

“We always got t-shirts for youth camps and they were always a really thick horrible print,” he said as he laughed. “They ended up being used for things like painting or washing the car, never really something I would wear to school or in a social setting.”

In addition to being a PK, Picker’s mother was a seamstress and at a young age, he was taught the ins and outs of sewing. “I could sew a garment before I could swing a hammer,” he said cracking another joke. Picker will be the first to tell you that he wasn’t the trendiest of his peers growing up but he knew fashion and he knew that there was a need for better apparel in churches. He firmly believed that a well-designed t-shirt was an opportunity to spread awareness and to further the mission of the church. Consequently, a poor quality shirt can prove to be detrimental in church branding.

Thus began the story of AMB3R , a Colorado-based apparel design firm founded by Picker in 2008 to serve nonprofit organizations. It started with a simple mission: “company or cause-related t-shirts don’t have to be awful.”

“If you’re going to spend the money on a t-shirt, it might as well be one that someone is actually going to wear.”

AMB3R is a firm that prides itself in providing retail quality shirts and exceptional customer service from experienced designers and project managers. The talented team of designers owns the development of clients’ projects from idea generation all the way to delivery.

“One unique differentiator is that we are able to offer retail quality shirts usually reserved for big-brand, high volume retail companies.”

Another key differentiator is its largest sector of clientele – churches, ministries, and nonprofits. Since the formation of AMB3R, Picker has had the opportunity to create clothing and partner with Elevation Church , Convoy of Hope , North Point , Willow Creek , Passion , NAMB , Lakewood Church and many others.

“I think that the church has a unique connection-a spiritual connection, a connection that you don’t get with secular companies like Abercrombie or Volcom,” he says. “At AMB3R, we really wanted to bring a creative focus and personal touch to make the most of that connection.”

Picker credits much of his success working with Christian organizations and clients to his days of managing merchandise for many top-selling Christian bands including Switchfoot, Chris Tomlin and Casting Crowns. It was during this period that Picker came up with the idea of AMB3R.

“I thought if all these well-known bands were able to generate revenue from merchandise, how can the church and nonprofits use something as simple as a t-shirt to further their mission?” It was clear to him that the non-profit sector was struggling to raise funds and market its cause through fashion.

That same cause is what gave AMB3R a purpose beyond revenue. “We want to help spread the good news in style,” he said.

Jeremy with wife, Zofia, and family

Surpassing his love of fashion is simply helping others, an empathy that was birthed and fostered by his parents who served in ministry. Even in the midst of trauma when Picker was diagnosed with Lymphoma at 32 years old, he chose to use his experience to serve a greater purpose. Though he ultimately went on to beat cancer, he lost a handful of his friends who he had met during the process and were going through the same battle with cancer. Many of whom would be alive today had the cancer been detected in its earlier stages. After realizing the importance of early detection, he collaborated with his wife, Zofia Wosinska, a former dye chemist to develop fashionable methods of cultivating cancer awareness. The two founded ÉSTAINE , a fashion company that creates luxury accessories imprinted with under-the-microscope beauty of dyes used in medical diagnosis. This unique method strives to spark conversations on early cancer detection.

As a committed Christian, Picker looks forward to continuing using his gifts and talents as an entrepreneur and fashion designer to further the Kingdom of God. “I want to help elevate the churches’ branding and the public’s perception of the church.”

He attended Southwestern Assemblies of God University (SAGU) graduating in 2001 with bachelor’s degrees in Theology and Business.

At the time, Picker was set on pursuing ministry.

“Although I ended up changing careers later on, I received awesome training and I was prepared from SAGU. For me, SAGU was most helpful in surrounding me with the right people. I was able to be around other pastor’s kids and missionary kids – all people who came from the same background from me.”

Picker may not have been called to pulpit ministry but he looks forward to continuing to provide quality clothing for churches and nonprofit industry. He is even more excited about innovating new ways of using his gifts and resources to serve a greater purpose.

In response to advice he would give to students pursuing fashion, he says, “to define your route. A lot of the fashion world is disconnected from the church and that’s how I found AMB3R. I would say to view things like that as an opportunity. Take your style and love of fashion and find a market that is untapped so you can let your light shine bright!”

To learn more about AMB3R, click here .

To learn more about ÉSTAINE, click here .

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