THE MISCONCEPTION OF “VEGAN LEATHER” + CASUAL VEGAN BIKER THREADS

A leather jacket has been a staple piece in both genders wardrobe for many years. It’s typically paired what’s a white crisp t-shirt, vintage denim, and converse. Today the world of fashion has taken on many renditions of the leather jacket, including veganizing just about every single piece of motorcycle gear out there. But first, let’s take it back to the basics before we cause a style injury.

Gottlieb Daimler was the first to invent the motorcycle around 1885 in Germany. Now, before envisioning Mr.Daimler as a man with a handlebar mustache and invisible ink, the motorcycle didn’t look quite like it does today. At first glance, you would think it’s just a vintage bicycle, but in fact, it was petroleum-fueled and became a great addition in the first World War by replacing horses. So maybe there is a little cruelty-free attitude amidst the tools even if it’s just enough to fill a quarter of an engine for my peace of mind.

The biker dude or dudette style became a hit after the iconic movie ‘The Wild One’ in 1953. Irving Scott invented the motorcycle jacket, which was formerly named ‘The Bomber Jacket’. Today, the bomber jacket is typically known to use fabrics such as silk or satin that mocks the shape of the original. The whole ensemble together was pulled from mechanics or ship room crew’s uniform which you can see the inspiration on Teddy boys, the cast in The Outsiders, and various bands in the 50s and the 60s. Fact: The original motorcycle gear included a leather cap that offered little protection.

Now, what is vegan leather you ask?

I couldn’t really tell you because there’s no exact definition.

Presstoff was the original artificial leather option in the 19th century made from treated paper pulp and was an alternative to almost anything that would be needed by leather. But, I really couldn’t say this would be environmentally friendly. In order to prepare the pulp, you would need to use a very high volume of water, which now would be looked as a huge no-no.

Great! We are all clear of this sort of green harm in 2019 right? Wrong, it doesn’t get better.

Though PO (Polyurethane) is commonly used over PVC (Polyvinyl Chloride) due to the production of relying on a huge amount of energy, PVC still lingers in various types of clothing making a huge appearance in vinyl. If you do see PVC in your clothes ingredients list, remember that if it does take a trip to a landfill, it can release dangerous chemicals into the water and soil. This means that it is certainly not the definition of vegan, as it can cause great harm to our marine life. However, brands like Mat & Natt uses recycled materials such as nylon, cardboard, rubber, and cork, and only has linings made of 100% recycled plastic bottles, making products conscious for all walks of life. At the end of the day, any effort into creating a more sustainable world should be considered as positive, but this is a great reminder to research each label that is being slapped on a product, it might not be exactly what you think.

VANCHI – Vegan Leather. Perfect for the side of your motorcycle.
Wills Vegan Shoes
Thrills – Stranger Jacket – Vegan Leather Black

 

Rawganique – This modern classic organic hemp bomber jacket is lined with 100% organic cotton fleece.

 

MUD – Non-stretch denim. 40% post-consumer recycled cotton, 60 % organic cotton.

 

The White Shirt Co

 

Photo Courtesy of  ‘ The Outsiders’

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