Spend five minutes with Amy Brachman — maybe even less — and you’ll start expecting more from your yoga pants. That they should be more than just boring black stretch pants. That they should fit better. Make you look better. Make you feel better, perform better. And they should be much more fun...even super fun.
That’s precisely what the Fort Worth native is going for with her business, Superfun Yoga Pants. “It’s not just about pants, it’s about happiness and confidence,” she enthuses as she shows off a selection of the brightly patterned pants and capris — all limited-edition designs — that she offers on her e-commerce site and through pop-up shops at exercise studios across the country. “The magic is in the way that you feel when you put them on. Each pair comes to life differently, and when you’re in the right pair, it’s an instant ‘Oh, yeah!’”
Selling this philosophy — and a whole lot of pants — hasn’t been a stretch. Since starting the business just a year ago, Brachman (above) has been selling faster than she can stock. She recently put the finishing touches on an e-commerce site that’s already getting a workout, she’s blowing up on social media with the hashtag #MyHappinessIs, and her pop-up shops have proved so popular that she no longer has to cold-call to find locales willing to host the vibrantly striped cabana display tent that doubles as a changing space.
Brachman never imagined she’d be leading a yoga pant revolution. After graduating from Trinity Valley School in 1993 and earning a degree from the University of Texas, she headed to corporate America, where she held marketing and management positions, first in Chicago and later in Richmond, Va., where she lives now.
Early in 2014, she had the opportunity to take a break from the grind. “I’d spent so much time building other businesses, I wanted to see what I was capable of,” she says. She decided to look for inspiration in what she loved: Iyengar yoga. She discovered the discipline in 2011 while attending a surf and yoga retreat in Bali, and its daily practice has toned her body and focused her mind (although thankfully it hasn’t calmed her infectious enthusiasm).
During this time, Brachman purchased a pair of colorful yoga pants online and, upon receiving them, posted a picture on Instagram with the hashtag, “Happiness is ... Superfun Yoga Pants.” Her satisfaction with the pants, along with the enthusiasm of her online audience, sparked an idea. She set up a small pop-up shop at local fitness studio. Success was instant, and Superfun Yoga Pants was born. This spring, she held a series of pop-up shops in Fort Worth, and she plans to return this month with even more styles for her hometown friends and fellow exercise enthusiasts.
Brachman doesn’t design Superfun’s pants; rather, she carefully selects brands and styles from small manufacturers based on her opinions and experiences and those from a team of 20 volunteer fitness instructor testers, each with different body types and fitness levels. “We run around in them, sweat in them and basically make sure they’re awesome,” Brachman explains. She stays in close touch with her small manufacturers, providing feedback on fit and patterns to ensure that her inventory stays “superfun.”
Because when your yoga pants are super fun, it seems, you must have more than one.
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Fort Worth Star Telegram