What kind of materials should we use to make ‘vegan’ accessories?

Nowadays, there are many materials suitable for ‘vegan accessories’, but here we focus on some of the most unknown non-synthetic , plant based fabrics. Most of us are aware of  cotton fabrics. Yet, how many of us are familiar with fabrics  such as abaca or sinamay? Why should we limit our choices when there are so many products out there?

  • Abaca or Manila Hemp: made from a species of banana grown in the Philippines , Ecuador, and Costa Rica. Used mainly for hats, it is three times stronger than cotton or silk. A fabric made from 100% abaca can last for over 100 years!
  • Canvas: heavy woven fabric
  • Chambray: usually made of cotton. You can find laces and handkerchiefs made out of it!
  • JinSin: A coarse natural fibre fabric combined with polyester. Used in hats and accessories!
  • Sinamay: from Abaca fibre so banana-based again! Used primarily for millinery and it comes in 3 varieties.
  • Straw: agricultural by-product, the dry stalks of cereal plants, after the grain and chaff have been removed. You can find jewels, hats, shoes, crafts projects and other items made of it. Also used in basketry.

Common mistakes:

– Felt is not vegan, even if the sheep is not required to die for but it remains an animal product. Exception is the fur felt that uses dead rabbits! Tweed is not vegan too.

– Feathers come from birds, some of them naturally lose  them but others are farmed and die. Synthetic feathers are really popular.

– Jersey can be vegan or not (it is originally made of wool!).

– Moleskin is vegan- beyond its name, it is a durable cotton fabric with a velvety nap.

– Silk is strictly non vegan! Instead, we can use Rayon, the oldest fibre manufactured, derived from naturally occurring cellulose.  Rayon was invented as an alternative to silk. As a result, the Mousseline de sole can be either vegan (made of rayon) or not (made of silk). Organza, taffeta and satin follow the same ‘rule’ too, so please refer to their labels should you need to make sure of that!

– Velcro is vegan.

– Velvet is a bit tricky. The most expensive is made of silk or silk and cotton, so it is not considered vegan. Some varieties are mixed with wool so they are not vegan too. Synthetic velvet can be vegan if it does not contain any silk at all.

Regarding our brand… our headpieces are vegan and we aim to add more vegan lines in the future!

 

Sources: Wikipedia, http://bikesexual.blogsport.eu/ , http://www.torbandreiner.com/ , www.parkinfabrics.co.uk