Superheroes! They have passion, they have swag, and they don’t always wear their undies over their tights!
Meet our No Nasties superheroes, living right amongst us mere mortals and just happening to go about their heroic business in fairtrade, organic style. We love our community and want to celebrate all you amazing people doing awesome things in your cotton capes! (Ahem, or tees, skirts, dresses…)
This week, Shivani Patel from Arture Design answered our No Nasties Superhero signal! Back in 2014, questions started running through Shivani's mind: Why can't something that looks good and feels great be sustainable for this world we live in? Why can't she create something that's fashionable, practical, cruelty-free and eco-friendly, all at the same time? She turned those questions into Arture Design, a lifestyle brand that uses cork instead of leather.
Hi Shivani! Thanks for taking the time to email with us today! Why No Nasties?
I have been in love with your brand since the first time I came across it 3 years ago. Everything looks light and breezy and the styles are very different from the usual 'look' that sustainable clothing tends to have. It's sustainable + cute and quirky. Total win.
Why are you a No Nasties Superhero? AKA, what is your story and passion?
I'm an accessory designer from Chennai. I graduated from NIFT, Chennai with a degree in Accessory Design, specialising in leather goods. My love for accessories, and exposure to it from the time I was a child because of my dad being in the field, made me want to create a brand that would make a difference. He was in the leather goods exports industry throughout my childhood. I spent a lot of time at his factory making little pouches and handbags. :)
When I started exploring the option of creating high quality non-leather accessories I realised that most non-leather materials are plastic base and incredibly polluting for the world. They don't bio-degrade and they don't look or feel great either. When I came across cork fabrics, I knew they'd be perfect for this vision I had. I fell in love with the material and that's how Arture was born. Cork is luxurious and soft to touch, without any of the nasties that are associated with leather. It's a cruelty-free material that's also amazing for our planet.
Here's a fun fact: Cork is one of the most ecological materials of it's kind because no cork tree is ever cut down. The bark is harvested, and it regenerates every nine years for over 200 years. The process of harvesting the bark makes the trees suck a ton of carbon dioxide out of the air. These trees also support a rich biodiversity in the Mediterranean forests (including some endangered species like the Iberian Lynx).
Add all of that to the fact that it's lightweight, durable, naturally waterproof and anti-fungal... What's not to love?
What are your 3 Nasties that you'd like to get rid of in our world?
And how can our readers connect with you?
A huge thank you to Shivani for sharing her story with us! She is wearing our Jenifurr Racerback Tank.