Follow the rules if you want a ‘vegan leather’ handbag

Lifestyle

Follow the rules if you want a ‘vegan leather’ handbag

You can see why the very idea gets some eyes rolling, but can we all just calm down?

Lisa Armstrong

1. No one can tell the difference. Certainly not by eye. But some are pretty fancy.  Georgie and Jo Townsley, two glamorous London sisters-in-law, searched high and low before they found a fabric they liked – in Japan. Then they got it made into bags in Italy by artisans who previously only worked with high-grade leather. “Ooh, it’s not spongy,” people nod approvingly when they touch it. Sponginess, it turns out, is an occupational hazard for vegan-bag aficionados.

2. As an adjective, “vegan” still really winds some people up. To others, it’s fashion catnip (that’s vegan too, come to think of it). A recent article on New York Magazine’s The Cut suggested a vegan bag is a community. You can see why “vegan” gets some eyes rolling.

3. Greenwashing is a blight on our times. A lot of sorry synthetics (such as “pleather”) are being rechristened. Some aren’t even strictly vegan. Check any glue is not derived from animal bones...

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