After making the commitment to a vegetarian lifestyle, are you left wondering if you’ve covered all your bases? No beef, chicken or other meat. Maybe you’re preparing to go further and take the leap into a vegan lifestyle. No eggs, no cheese. Well, one or two other areas still remain: No fur, no leather. The animal cruelty that comes from the curation of leather is one area of concern, but it also boasts documented and detrimental effects on the environment.
What about those Louboutins you have your eye on? How about that classic monogram Saint Laurent clutch in fuchsia? Well, all those pieces are luxurious and elegant, but they won’t be crafted like Stella McCartney’s line of vegetarian leather. It’s true. Vegetarian leather may sound foreign, but it’s a commitment the company has held fast to since 2013. The fact that this non-negotiable value has brought the company great success only speaks to the demand for this genre of goods. Neiman Marcus is one of many proud retailers to display Stella’s line of handbags, and my perusal of her products was enchanting. The faux leather is smooth as silk. While there is no shortage of color selections, her Cognac Stella Popper Shoulder Bag really stole the spotlight. With a center open pocket to pop your phone in and two larger compartments, it covers all the right bases. Signature Stella McCartney logo buttons add a golden dash of elegance against the rich cognac. Just try to take your eyes off that gold diamond cut chain shoulder strap—it absolutely glistens!
My awe and curiosity over how such elegant faux leather was created led me to do some research online. When their quest began in 2013, the company selected a material called Eco Alter Nappa. It’s made from polyester and polyurethane that’s protected by a coating of vegetable oil. As if their cruelty free mandate wasn’t enough, the faux leather materials used by the company are nearly always recycled products. All handbags are lined with polyester that comes from recycled water bottles. Isn’t it amazing what ingenuity and a devotion to a specific cause can do? Incredibly, all handbags are crafted solely by hand in a select number of factories in Italy.
If the Popper style captivates you too, there are plenty of options. The same bag is available in honey, and a clutch exists in off white. Stunning. But don’t stop there. Her Black Falabella Box Handbag is pure artistry. Quilted totes, fold over totes and luggage selections abound. Each piece comes with a promise to finish off any outfit just right, paired with the enhancement of a clear conscience. Your devotion to a vegetarian or vegan lifestyle will be authentically complete.
As for the price tag, you might want to set aside a portion of a paycheck or two for this investment, but I assure you it’s worth it. Several online reviews attest to the durability of this faux leather. Reports of minimal scarring and a lack of fading seem to hold true. The Cognac Stella Popper Shoulder Bag comes with a price tag of approximately $1,240. Before you cringe though, there’s something else to consider.
Those artisans in Italy who do all their work by hand cost the company about 70% more than other means of production, yet they do not mark up the price tags to account for that. It’s a genuine commitment to a worthy cause, and you can partake in it while looking effortlessly styled and monumentally chic. Go ahead, take a stroll down the Stella McCartney aisle and dream big. It’s worth every moment of browsing and every inch of that earmarked paycheque. Happy shopping!