Hermès Reveals A Bag Made Of Mushroom. Is Luxury Fashion Really Going Vegan?

In March, Hermès announced a collaboration with California-based startup, MycoWorks, who has a patent “that turns the threads of the mushroom root (called mycelium) into a material that feels and looks just like animal-derived leather.” The result of this partnership? The launch of Hermès’ “Victoria” travel bag made of mushroom-based material coming at the end of this year.


A Look At Luxury Fashion And Plant-Based Materials

The “Victoria” travel bag features 2 panels made of mycelium that has been tanned and finished to mimic the look of real leather, from the wrinkling to the subtle color gradient. This bag represents the power and possibilities when we invest in nature and biotechnology. By providing an alternative to animal leather production, large corporations can minimize their carbon footprint.

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“With the release of the Victoria bag, Hermès joins other major fashion houses in the race to find a viable, non-plastic alternative to animal leather, due to the increasing environmental and ethical concerns.”

Luxury fashion houses have historically utilized the finest animal skins to produce their handbags. Hermès is especially known for their upscale products (most notably the Birkin bag) made from the skin of crocodiles, lizards, ostriches, etc.

The Cost Of High Fashion

Luxury fashion houses pride themselves in constant innovation. After all, consumers are paying premium prices for a reason. Now in 2021, finding increasingly ethical and sustainable alternatives is, and should be, the driving force of innovation.

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Interestingly, despite the possibilities with mycelium, Hermès has stated that this more sustainable plant-based material will not replace their original “Victoria” bag made of calfskin, nor will it replace the classic leather bags the brand is known for.




Is Luxury Fashion Really Going Vegan?

Hermès is not the only high-fashion brand moving towards a more sustainable future. Other popular fashion houses like Stella McCartney, Gucci, Prada, and Valentino are searching for vegan and earth-friendly alternatives to leather and fur, including banning the use of certain animal materials. The question is: Are they doing enough? It may be time to reimagine the luxury fashion sector.


What do you think of Hermès’ recent partnership? Do you think major fashion houses have the social responsibility to minimize social and environmental harm in their production processes? Share with us below!




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