Imagine training as a competitive athlete in heavy, cumbersome cotton gear that chafes and gets soggy – and heavier – as training progresses. That’s the challenge our founder Nina faced as a young girl in China. “The uniforms certainly didn’t help me perform. And they were unattractive!” she exclaims as she remembers the many hours she spent training in Track and Field, often starting at 6:00 a.m. Her natural athletic skills were recognized at a very young age and she was asked to represent her school at sporting events. The days were long, but her rigorous schedule paid off; Nina won countless awards and trophies representing schools at all levels: elementary, secondary, and University.
When Nina graduated with a Master’s degree in International Business, she put her Track and Field days behind her and adapted her rigorous schedule to the world of commerce. She was drawn to the textile industry and was on track to accomplishing lofty goals in that sector when a friend returned from a business trip to Vancouver, BC. He painted a picture of BC as a sports-lover’s dream filled with parks, mountains, trails, ocean, lakes and rivers. Without even taking a sightseeing trip to Vancouver, Nina knew she had to live there. Nina arrived in Vancouver with nothing but a computer and an address book filled with the names of friends and family she had left behind. Energized by the culture of fitness and health in her new home, Nina dreamed of finding a way to contribute to the sports community using her talents in textiles and her background as an athlete. Nina’s enthusiasm was like a magnet to her new sports buddy, Parry. He shared her enthusiasm for cutting-edge sportswear and inspired her to seek out new textiles and ways to use them. Parry was instrumental in helping Nina clarify the needs of the modern athlete.
Nina installed herself in a tiny room at home where, armed with her computer, she spent her evenings conjuring designs of sportswear. Spurred on by memories of the heavy, unattractive sports uniforms of her school days, she vowed to create enticing garments to motivate and inspire athletes at all levels of ability. She reached out through the Internet to friends and colleagues: pattern designers, textile fabricators, tailors, and manufacturers. After years of planning and creating, Nina found she had an assortment of sample garments that she loved. Anxious to share them with other sports lovers, Nina took a gamble; she packed the samples in a suitcase and took them on a road trip to a trade show in Vegas. The payoff? Nina’s background in athletics and dedication to the sports culture attracted the attention you would expect. PN Jone fitness apparel began in a tiny room in Nina’s home and is now available worldwide.
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