mindful materials

Soybean, But make it fashion.

With a high street brimming with cheap and cruel leather, There are a lot of really exciting moves being made in the textile industry towards kinder clothing materials; today I’m sharing my top ten vegan textiles.

The Primark Days

I certainly haven’t always focused on this side of the style world. In fact, I’ve been the girl that heads to Primark with £20 thinking, ‘okay, how many items of clothing can I get for what’s in my pocket this week? Time to fill this basket and hope for the best!’.

But when I found out that my ‘I’ll wear this for a couple of months and then chuck it’ mindset was causing tremendous issues for our planet and its people, I decided I wasn’t going to fund my fast fashion habit anymore. So I started a capsule wardrobe.

Taking My Capsule Wardrobe to the Next Level

Once I’d figured out the art of investing in more whilst buying less, I began to pay attention to the quality of each piece, as well as its sustainability. My current mindset is: if it’ll last me years, it’s worth investing in. If it’s sustainably and ethically made, that’s a major bonus.

Unfortunately, a lot of high street stores (i.e. the easiest places to shop for clothes) use unethical fabrics. So this year I set myself a challenge: to stop buying animal-based materials - leather, fur, feathers, silk, etc.

And let me tell ya, it‘s certainly proven itself to be a bit of a challenge!

My Top Ten Vegan Textiles

I decided to research into the latest man-made materials I could turn to as alternatives, and I can confirm there’s a lot of really cool things happening in the material world ( and, like Madonna, I am a ( vegan ) material girl ) . So what’s available out there for those looking for clothes without animal cruelty? Here are my top ten favourite textile discoveries:

piñatex

Piñatex

Where’s it from?

A blend of cellulose fibres extracted from pineapple leaves with petroleum-based resin.

How’s it used?

A leather alternative. Shoes, bags, jackets, etc.

Who’s using it?

Hugo Boss.

soybean fibre

Soybean Fibre

Where’s it from?

Soy protein, a by-product of tofu manufacturing.

How’s it used?

A cashmere alternative. It’s also known as ‘vegetable cashmere’ and ‘soy silk’.

Who’s using it?

KD New York.

bamboo

Bamboo

Where’s it from?

Largely imported from China.

How’s it used?

A renewable, fast-growing and non-toxic alternative to plastic. It’s either restructured as it is to create durable bags and shoes, or its fibres are used to create cloth or yarn.

Who’s using it?

Cult Gaia.

woocoa

Woocoa

Where’s it from?

Coconuts, mushrooms and hemp

How’s it used?

An alternative to wool.

Who’s using it?

It’s currently only being used by its inventors!

nullarbor

Nullarbor

Where’s it from?

Liquid coconut waste from the food industry.

How’s it used?

An alternative to wool.

Who’s using it?

Nanollose, its inventor.

kombucha

Kombucha

Where’s it from?

A byproduct of Kombucha tea.

How’s it used?

A leather alternative.

Who’s using it?

Its inventor, 17-year-old Heather Weir.

cork

Cork

Where’s it from?

The bark of the cork oak tree.

How’s it used?

An alternative to leather.

Who’s using it?

Matt and Nat.

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apple

apple

Where’s it from?

Fibres extracted from Dry apple peels!

How’s it used?

an alternative to leather

Who’s using it?

Veerah.

organic cotton

Organic Cotton

Where’s it from?

non-genetically modified plants across India, Turkey, China and some parts of the USA.

How’s it used?

A non-toxic alternative to traditional cotton; uses far less water. Used for socks, underwear, tshirts, fitnesswear.

Who’s using it?

Organic Basics.

hemp

Hemp

Where’s it from?

Cannabis plant fibres.

How’s it used?

It’s extremely durable, so it can be used for jeans, shirts, etc.

Who’s using it?

Thought Clothing.

app003prod.jpg

tencel

Tencel ( Lyocell / Modal )

Where’s it from?

Sustainably sourced wood pulp.

How’s it used?

For soft garments like trousers, tshirts, etc.

Who’s using it?

Weekday.

Do you own clothing made from any of these materials?

Which do you like the sound of the most?

fashionnati