Anya Hindmarch launches a collection of biodegradable leather bags

British designer Anya Hindmarch is launching a collection of biodegradable leather bags. After two years of research and development, the London-based brand will launch the range with the aim of creating naturally biodegradable pieces instead of recycling items that don’t go to landfill.

Hindmarch told the Business of Fashion: “We want this bag to last forever and it should last forever if you take care of it. The point is, if it ever ended up in a landfill, it would decompose… but if you wanted to actively compost it, I’d rather you sell it on eBay or give it to someone else.

Hindmarch has been a champion of sustainable fashion since her launch of I am not a Plastic Bag in 2007 as part of a collaborative project with Antidote and the global social change movement We Are What We Do, currently known as Shift. After thousands of people lined up to buy the tote at Sainsburys (80,000 on launch day), the project garnered huge media coverage around the world, sparked debate over the use of the bags in plastic and was instrumental in the final decision to charge for plastic bags in the UK.

The collection, called Return to Nature, has a fully traceable supply chain, with manufacturers and suppliers in Germany and production in Spain. The leather is not treated with heavy metals or other harmful chemicals, but finished with liquid silk, a finishing solution used by companies such as Chanel, which is used to cover silk threads. The result is a skin-friendly, durable and long-lasting fabric.

Hindmarch told BoF that the bag is materialless, unlined and sewn with cotton which also biodegrades. It is also coated by hand with a wax based on natural oils.

The collection is available for pre-order at the company’s flagship store in Knightsbridge and from MatchesFashion.

Ethel J. Montes

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