I’m a vegan. Well, that’s mostly true. I am technically an ovo-pescatarian, which means that I eat eggs and fish. However, it’s easier to say that I’m vegan, particularly because I’ll only eat eggs from happy local chickens, and I’m pretty dang selective about my fish eating (no sea bugs please). I am vegan because I watched a film at age 28 that shocked and educated me simultaneously.
Of course, this film is not representative of all farms, ranches, butcher shops, etc. My sister runs a ranch (Red Gate Ranch) that is extremely kind to their animals, and I think it’s important to shop from local farmers and understand their practices when purchasing animal products. That said, I can’t bring myself to eat a cow, even after its spent its life massaged, spoiled, and loved, then killed quickly and painlessly. It’s like asking me to eat my dog. It just isn’t in me.
What does this have to do with design? Well, leather sofas, leather wall panels, fur rugs, wool carpet, silk drapes, the list goes on and on. As a vegan designer, I understand that not all my clients are vegan and if they want a leather sofa, a leather sofa they will get. I will absolutely share the pros of vegan substitutes that are NOT plastic based! Sure, we can all throw vinyl on the sofa and call it leather, but vinyl emits harmful toxins and when the time comes for the sofa to be reupholstered or tossed, the plastic will stay…. and stay… and stay.
We love the idea of recycling leather an reusing, it but another key component to good design is quality that will last. Leather is recycled by grinding up scraps and gluing them together, commonly referred to as bonded leather. The problem with bonded leather is that it will degrade quickly. It’s a great option for a chair that will sit in a dark corner and never be sat in…
When you work with us for fabric selections, we work closely with our product representatives with preference to textiles that are vegan and eco-friendly. Share your fabric concerns and will will utilize our trade sources to provide you with the best product that meets your project needs, and we do it all with a grain of salt. As a ‘cheating vegan’, I understand that ethics are important, but not everything is black and white.