Vegan fashion is on the rise as more brands in the industry move towards sustainability.
One of them is Arsayo, a company based in Paris, France.
Arsayo has launched a new collection of bags, which features vegan leather made from the bark of the cork oak tree.
Vegan leather bag costs S$353, including shipping to S'pore
French designers, Ary and Jonathan Ohayon, have created two bags, which feature prints similar to snake-skin and crocodile-skin.
The siblings created the exotic 'skin' line to address issues that plague the traditional leather industry.
They company highlighted that consumers are becoming more aware about the origin of animal-derived fabrics, and their impact on animal welfare as well as on the planet.
According to the duo, the unisex designs have an organic cotton interior, and are water-resistant, light, and even tear-proof.
The bags are currently on sale and cost €182,50 (S$294.32) each, while shipping fees to Singapore will set you back another €37,86 (S$61.06).
In total, one bag will cost you around S$353.
Here's a closer look at the bags, and what it looks like on the inside:
The bags in this collection are currently on pre-order, so they will only arrive around the end of the year.
Eco-friendly, cruelty-free alternative to animal skins
According to Jonathan Ohayon, cork harvesting does not harm trees, and in fact harvesting the material means trees can absorb more carbon dioxide to aid in the bark regeneration process, and therefore store three to five times more carbon dioxide than those left unharvested.
In addition, animal leather poses multiple issues to the environment, people and animals.
To make leather, raw animal skins are treated with chemicals, such as chromium and other hazardous materials.
In addition, the wastewater from tanneries, where skins get processed, is often discharged into rivers nearby.
For workers at these tanneries or communities around them, exposure to chromium leads to respiratory and gastrointestinal problems, according to this study.
According to the company, Arsayo's handmade bags are ethically crafted in Portugal by skilled artisans under fair working conditions.
Jonathan Ohayon said:
"This new exclusive alternative is a tribute to the beauty of amazing exotic animals with the respect of their life and our environment."
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Top images by Arsayo