Dressing Vegan With Style

By on June 12, 2014
Vegan Fashion

It’s time to dispel some vegan mythology, shatter the presumptuous attitude that fashion and vegan philosophy can’t coexist. The first misconception spun into creation by popular culture is that you can spot a vegan by what they wear, by the poorly designed materials stitched together in a fictitious commune located in the middle of a forest. Vegans are everyday folk, and they’re just as conscious of fashion as anyone else. They value aesthetics and style, but look further afield for their optimal choices in fashion. Those sources must be free of animal by-products and have no association with cruelty to living creatures in any form.

Ethically sourced clothing uses materials that have the feel of silk and leather, but this feel and appearance is where the resemblance ends. Faux leather and eco-friendly fabrics take the place of materials sourced from animals. A classy pair of high heels has the appearance of patent leather or suede, but deliberate effort has eliminated animals from the fashion equation. The driving force behind these successful ventures comes from a recognition of each animal’s right to live in a cruelty-free environment, but this reasoning doesn’t quite explain the chic fashions entering the realm of the vegan. The full answer comes from popular culture and a new awareness that spotlights the plight of the animal rights movement.

The relevance factor created by popular figures imbues vegan culture with serious pull in the fashion world. Models and actors, multinational company CEOs and leaders of fashion take ethical considerations to new heights, creating entire lines of fashion free of wool and silk, clear of materials and fabrics tainted by cruelty to animals. Organic bamboo rayon, untouched by the pesticides plaguing conventionally grown cotton, makes lovely shirts and stylish blouses. The organic nature of hemp creates beautiful clothing lines that are as cool to wear as they are attractive to show off.

Vegan clothing designers work selflessly to explore other options, expending precious resources in finding optimal clothing solutions that look good at any party or high-level dining function. They attract attention on the runways of Milan and the fashionable streets of London. One of the new materials finding pride of place alongside familiar materials is tencel, an eco-friendly product made from the cellulose of trees. Its development is yet more evidence of the ethical drive to eliminate clothing made from less friendly sources. The hope is to mass manufacture the organic materials, introducing other tools that focus on the environment, including recycling and research into synthetic fabrics.

The payoff of these efforts is watching couture designers use the cutting-edge fabrics and faux clothing to design fashionable pants and shoes that look every bit as expensive as anything they’re replacing. Non-leather shoes and synthetic materials used in stylish womenswear and menswear create lines of fashionable apparel that are bio-degradable and affordable. Each item, every shirt and skirt, is a delight for the wearer. They suit athletic and business styles, promoting a lifestyle of peace. Being vegan and fashion-conscious today means never limiting clothing choices.

About Dean Iodice