Skip to main content

Kombucha and… Vegan Leather?

by Hannah Barnett

As the climate crisis worsens, and fast fashion continues to be one of the biggest negative impacts, scientists have now turned to living organisms for solutions. 



Kombucha, a fermented drink using tea that has recently skyrocketed in popularity due to its unique approach to positive health changes, has once again taken society by surprise. A recent discovery by scientists found that it contains a byproduct called ‘SCOBY.’ Meaning it’s a symbiotic culture of bacteria that can turn into vegan leather! 


The process of creating SCOBY is five steps long; Harvesting, Purification, Moulding and Shaping, drying and eventually finishing - sometimes being treated with natural oils or dyes on occasion to make the material water resistant. It's a hardcore, dense cycle that fashion companies have to be fully committed to if they agree to carry it out. 



This has turned the heads of environmentally aware fashion designers who are now trying to incorporate this regenerative form of leather into their collections. While this includes Kate Hall, Sacha Lauren, and Emma van der Leest, no one has done it quite like Tran Hung. 


Tran Hung is a Vietnamese fashion brand, founded in 2017, who have always prioritised being an ethical and sustainable house. No wonder they were excited at this fashion discovery - and took every chance they could to include it in their latest collection. 



With a following of 1 million on Instagram and recently styling the iconic Ariana Grande for her SNL stint, Tran Hung are constantly making an impact on the industry. 


But, it was their AW24 collection where the collaboration with SCOBY was made, solidifying their brand as one to watch. 



The collections colour palette was focused around dark black and nude tones, paired with white to portray the spirit of surrealism in fashion. 


Tran Hung’s use of delicate hand sewing techniques and hand craftsmanship limits their use of machinery, adding to their sustainable improvements. As well as many of their designs being made from excess fabric which limits further waste. 



Alongside vegan leather, the collection uses hand woven silk which can be seen in their off the shoulder maxi dress, juxtaposing a more masculine midnight black jumpsuit styled with oval frame sunglasses. There are also a handful of two piece sets, the dusty colour tone of these emphasising the natural materials they are created from. 



Paying homage to the Vietnamese Tết holiday (shortened from “Tết Nguyên Đán”), this collection also considers culture as a way of portraying their designs. This tradition means ‘Festival of the first Morning of the First Day,’ almost like how this futuristic, innovative approach to sourcing material can be seen - it's like new days, better days, for our planet. 


Would you wear living bacteria to help save the planet?


Edited by Emily Duff

Most Popular

‘Make Tattooing Safe Again’: Sheffield Based Tattoo Artist Exposed for Indecent Behaviour

 by Emily Fletcher TW: SA, Animal Abuse, Transphobia Photo Credit: @ meiko_akiz uki Recently, an  Instagram account  has been created to provide a  ‘space to safely give a voice to those who want to speak out about the behaviour of one, Sheffield based tattoo artist’. A  total of 40+ posts have been made by the above social media account regarding  one of Sheffield's most popular tattoo artists .  Thankfully, all posts are prefaced with a Content Warning prior to sharing screenshots of the messages that have been sent anonymously to the page. The majority of Content Warnings refer to sexual behaviour, abuse, and sexual assault. It is clear that there is a reoccurring theme within each submission, as many clients appear to have had the same experiences with the tattoo artist. Women, mostly, are being made to feel uncomfortable while being tattooed. One of the most vulnerable positions anyone can be in, tattoo artists should make their clients feel comfortable and safe during the pro

Fashion For a Cause: Brands That Stand with Palestine and the history of fashion as a form of Activism

by Oana-Maria Moldovan For over two months, there has been an ongoing genocide war in Gaza. To simplify a long and horrific issue, the situation that started, on a larger scale, around one hundred years ago, and has only become amplified since October 7th 2023. Taking place around the Gaza Strip, the West Bank, and Israel–Lebanon border, the armed conflict is between Israel and Hamas-led Palestinian militant groups.  The problem is about “stolen” land. Said land is seen as an important holy part of both religions involved. But really, how holy can we consider a land to be, if people kill other people for it? It’s important to remember that this genocide is about three things: forced occupation, zionism, and religion. It’s also important to remember what ethnic erasure is. This terrible expresion, also known as cultural or ethnic assimilation, refers to the process by which the distinct cultural or ethnic identity of a particular group is gradually diminished or erased, often due to ext

Now What? The Aftermath of the 'Manic Pixie Dream Girl'

by Susan Moore Here is a bit about me: I am an open, excitable, creative AFAB who is also moderately attractive. I have a unique sense of personal style and a personality that on the surface can only be described as “bubbly” and “quirky”. For this reason, dating is a nightmare. To be sure, I do not have a hard time finding dates or potential suitors. The problems arise when said dates spend some time with me and decide that I am a rare specimen, and the connection they feel with me is “unlike anything they have felt before”. Then, things go one of two ways.  Either a) they decide I am too high maintenance and no longer palatable, or  b) they choose to never look further than the surface and are content to date the idea of me rather than the real me. There is something rather interesting, perhaps funny, about my situation. It is in no way unique. I have met so many people who constantly dealt with the same problem. Even funnier still, is the fact that there is a trope that simultaneousl