After Ditching Animal Skins & Fur, Fashion House Karl Lagerfeld Unveils Cactus Leather Bag With Model Amber Valletta

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Founded by German fashion designer and photographer Karl Lagerfeld, the fashion house recently joined forces with model, actress, and activist Amber Valletta to co-create a sustainable accessories collection for Spring 2021 that features cruelty-free versions of its iconic K/Kushion bag by using vegan cactus leather instead of animal ones.

In keeping with their efforts to achieve the sustainable goals listed in the G7 Fashion Pact, Paris-based Karl Lagerfeld’s new bag showcases vegan leather developed by Mexican startup Desserto, who was recently awarded by PETA for its cruelty-free innovation.

Founded in 2019 by Adrian Lopez and Marte Cazarez, Desserto developed an animal-free and recyclable alternative by converting prickly pear cactus into smooth vegan leather without the need for herbicides, pesticides, or even irrigation.

Coloured with organic pigments, Karl Lagerfeld’s eleven-piece collection further showcases the quilted K/Kushion, wash bag and face mask, all created with 90% GRS-certified recycled cotton. Other items in the eco-friendly collection include a cardholder, reusable water bottle, metal water bottle, and cardholder, all priced between 49 to 395 euros.

In an interview with Fashion United, co-creator of the collection and sustainability advocate Valletta, said that she is glad to see the collection come to life. “I’m convinced that Karl would have loved it. I love being able to continue his legacy – chic, bold and innovative. It’s exciting to see how thoroughly Karl Lagerfeld is researching sustainable practices and materials. They continue to impress me with their knowledge and commitment to design, and producing in a new and conscious way.”

Source: Karl Lagerfeld

It’s exciting to see how thoroughly Karl Lagerfeld is researching sustainable practices and materials. They continue to impress me with their knowledge and commitment to design, and producing in a new and conscious way

Amber Valletta, model, activist and co-creator of the new collection

In addition, the brand will donate a part of the profits to The Ocean Cleanup, a non-profit that is working to keep plastic out of our oceans.

Read: Check out these plant-based fashion brands that are making cactus leather a mainstream reality

Apart from this, the brand will launch a second collection in spring/summer 2022 and this will feature a second K/Kushion style that is created 90% and is certified by the Global Recycle Standard (GRS), a firm that sets standards for third-party accreditation of recycled content.

Swiss clothing giant H&M features Desserto’s cactus leather in its new debut collection, Science Story.

Just last year, Karl Lagerfeld decided to stop using animal skins and in 2019, banned fur for its future collections. Other brands are also stepping up: recently, Kering Group’s two fashion giants Alexander McQueen and Balenciaga, announced that they would be ditching animal fur going forward. Other brands to follow suit include Gucci, Prada, Armani, Versace, Michael Kors, Jimmy Choo, DKNY, Burberry and Chanel.

Read: Check out these cruelty-free brands that are using several natural vegan alternatives from coconut to grape to pineapple

The Karl Lagerfeld x Amber Valletta collection is available here, in Zalando and in Karl Lagerfeld stores worldwide.


Lead image courtesy of Karl Lagerfeld.


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