Composure Magazine – Father’s Day Guide

Read the full story here at composuremagazine.com and grab the latest print issue!

Our top picks for dad!

Story: Min A. Lee

1. Designer Sheila Vance with her engineering team gives sunglasses a futuristic look. Built to withstand changing trends, these sunglasses will last dad for years to come!

Mechanix Sunglasses Frame p=mv Plt with Plt Overlay Lenses, $420, Destination Sama at 9530 Brighton Way, Beverly Hills, California

2. We can’t forget about footwear! Cesare Paciotti impressed us with their Italian quality and modern take on classic styles. The rich colors stood out as perfect gift ideas for dads everywhere!

Cesare Paciotti Madison, $395, Cesare Paciotti Sport Sneaker, $515, cesare-paciotti.com or 9528 Brighton Way, Beverly Hills, California

3. For the dapper dad in your life, check out luxury made-to-order ties from designer Rachel Park with tipping that stands out beautifully. If you want, have dad pick out his own fabric and shape for something truly special!

Rachel Park Silk Ties, Starting at $130, rachelpark.com

4. Whiskey and beer fans, this one is for you! Original Grain creates stunning watches from the reclaimed wood of whiskey and beer barrels. To top it off, for every sale, they plant 10 trees through Trees for the Future.

Original Grain Brewmaster Chrono, $349, originalgrain.com

5. If your dad is always on the go, Kurtis Paul crafts extremely stylish accessories and bags for travelers. Combining function with durability, the waxy leather of their pieces prevents water damage and general wear.

Kurtis Paul 13” Leather Laptop Sleeve, $78, Kurtis Paul Leather Wash Bag, $65, kurtispaul.com

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Composure Magazine – Mother’s Day Guide

See the full article here at composuremagazine.com!

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Yoga-wear favorite Manduka teams up with the Susan G. Komen organization in the fight against breast cancer with their Project:OM. Mother’s Day weekend Project:OM is working to create the world’s largest yoga class, one million strong, to help raise funds for breast cancer research. Join in with your mom during this special time and see where classes are being held live-stream in your city at projectOM.com. To top it off, on Saturday, May 13, YouTube sensation Adriene Mishler (in the above picture) will be instructing the live stream class! Sometimes the best gift to give is one that gives back.

More information at manduka.com/projectom

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If you’re interested in Project:OM, consider taking a look at cancer survivor and fashion designer Rachel Park’s Park Puff. A seat belt pillow that allows those recovering from breast cancer to ride and drive in cars with more comfort.

The Park Puff Seat Belt Pillow For Cancer Patients, $39, survivormoda.com

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Every mom knows how kids get every scratch and scrape they can, so Blingsting came up with the chicest first aid kit out there! Everything from bandages to sting relief pads packed into a modern, geometric rose gold clutch—classy!

Blingsting First Aid Clutch, $25, blingsting.com

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Aitch Aitch creates their bags with salmon skin leather, a natural byproduct of the fishing industry—a more sustainable approach. This artisan crafted bag exudes timeless luxury.

Aitch Aitch The Rosa Crossbody Bag, $2090, aitch-aitch.com

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O.R.G is taking Asian skincare technology along with their “breakthrough formulas” and bringing them stateside. Gentle enough for sensitivity, yet extremely effective, this diverse set will keep your skin looking healthier, younger and brighter. With travel sizes included it’s perfect for the mom-on-the-go!

O.R.G Skincare Mother’s Day Gift Set, $89 Mother’s Day Special (otherwise $132), orgskincare.com. Want 10% off? Use our code “COMPOSURE10” at checkout!

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“Addicted To Soft,” is an understatement, these beautifully tailored, lush pieces will become mom’s favorite pieces to wear! Their expert pattern-making ensures a bespoke fit and a garment with high functionality.

Les Lunes Gambetta Top, $92, leslunes.com

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Designed and made right in downtown Los Angeles, this timeless tote will last mom forever. Made from the smoothest suede we’ve ever felt, and a rich shade of blue that will go with anything in her closet—trust us, mom will adore it!

GM Studio LA The Tote Sac, $310, gmstudiola.com

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Known for their sleek watches, Barbas & Zacári also create beautiful sunglasses that will keep mom looking stylish as ever! Plus, a portion of each sale is donated towards cancer research.

Barbas & Zacári Rhodes Sunglasses, $57, barbasandzacari.com

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Bracelets made with contemporary style in mind, mom can stack these high-grade precious stones together or with her favorite bracelets and watches. We love the small gold-plated charms found on each piece!

Part Human And Machine Marble With Freshwater Pearl, $110.95, Double Matte Black With Triple Gold Spike, $119.95, parthumanandmachine.com

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Two words: fairy dust! Mom wants to look and feel her best too, so give the gift of glow with ARTISANskin’s fairy dust. A subtle, yet effective highlighter that comes as a loose powder. With the tagline “warning: results are magical,” it’s hard to resist! If that doesn’t get you, the packaging will. It’s part science, part beauty, and completely natural.

ARTISANskin Fairy Dust, $19, artisanskinrevolution.com

 

Composure Magazine – Going Green Trend Story

See the full story here at ComposureMagazine.com!

Our top choice brands dedicated to eco-friendly practices just in time for Earth Day.

Story: Min A. Lee

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Who knew cork was so stylish and versatile! This artisan made handbag proves to us going green doesn’t compromise being fashion forward.

Rok Cork Sandie Cork Shoulder Purse Luxe, $201.26, rokcork.com

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Votch not only offers a sleek design with vegan leather straps, they also have eco-friendly packaging making their watches an instant favorite.

Votch Limited Edition Watch, $151, votch.co.uk

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These beautiful blocks are made from fallen walnut trees that would be considered waste-wood versus cutting down perfectly healthy ones.

Artifact Uprising Walnut Print Block, $18, artifactuprising.com

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This mix of minerals helps cleanse and balance your skin, aid in circulation and reduce muscle tension. Most importantly, this apothecary favorite only offers products that are vegan and cruelty-free.

ARTISANskin Mineral Soak, $10, artisanskinrevolution.com

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Being 100% recyclable, reusable and toxin free attracted us to Yuhme’s water bottles, but then to find out each bottle bought provides 6 months of clean water for a single person in Central Africa (in partnership with Water For Good) won us over for life.

Yuhme Reusable Water Bottle, $31, yuhme.se

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PHACE supports several environmental and social charities, and draws inspiration from endangered species which you can see in their motifs. This luxury line is also made from sustainable sources.

PHACE Feelin’ My Scales Knitted Sweater, phacecollective.com

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Brooklyn-based Miakoda provides modern and comfortable sportswear made from organic materials. Trust us, this hoodie would easily be your favorite go-to.

Composure Magazine – Michaela Conlin

Celebrity feature for Composure Magazine’s 16th Issue, available here.
Read the full article at Composure Magazine.

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An Excerpt:

Michaela Conlin on Saying Goodbye to Emmy-Nominated TV Series “Bones” and Navigating One of the Toughest Industries.

Photography by Amanda Elkins
Styling by Jessy Cain for The Wall Group
Makeup Kindra Mann for Tomlinson Management Group
Hair by Sascha Breuer for Starworks Artists
Story by Min A. Lee

You’d recognize Michaela Conlin from her impressive 12-year run as Angela Montenegro on the acclaimed television series “Bones.” The crime drama aired its final episode on March 28th, following for the last time the work of Dr. Temperance “Bones” Brennan, played by Emily Deschanel, and FBI special agent Seeley Booth, played by David Boreanaz, as they solved FBI murder cases with forensic anthropology. As Angela, Conlin explored forensic facial reconstruction at the Jeffersonian Institute Medico-Legal Lab and invented the Angelator then Angelatron – graphic simulators that showed victims and crime scene scenarios – and for over a decade, Conlin’s strong-willed portrayal of Angela added even more depth and balance among the already-stellar cast.

Watching Conlin on screen, you see a natural ease. She seems at home with any role she undertakes. This ability likely stems from her years of experience beginning at the young age of six. “I did a production of ‘The King and I,’” she shares. “It was a professional local theatre, and it was such a big deal to me to be a part of something. Acting was the only thing I was interested in doing.” Growing up in Allentown, Pennsylvania with a strong support system, Conlin continued to flourish. “My parents still live there, and they’re incredibly supportive. They drove me to endless play rehearsals, dance rehearsals, and they were always really, really great about it,” she beams.

From Allentown to New York City and now Los Angeles, the “long road” has proven rough at times. Conlin opens up about one of the toughest lessons to be learned as an actor. “You can’t take it personally. It’s very hard not to take everything personally because it’s such a personal business. It’s a human business. It’s based on humanity. When you don’t get a job, it’s hard not to take it to heart, but really, you can’t,” she advises. “That, and just having the tenacity to keep going against all odds.”

Perseverance does pay off, and “Bones” is proof of this – not only showcasing stability in a notoriously rocky industry, but also a solid learning environment. “I think being on a 22-episode show is a really great way to prepare you for a lot of things because your workload is so intense, the hours are so demanding, you’re shooting for so many months of the year, and you’re memorizing lines at the very last minute. It’s a really great place to train,” she explains. “For example, I did [the film] ‘Lincoln Lawyer’ a couple years ago, and that was a tough shoot. It was a lot of locations, a lot of nights, and I felt much more comfortable being on that set because of ‘Bones.’”

Going through the evolution of Angela Montenegro season to season, we see why fans adore her outgoing and confident personality. “She’s a bit free-wheeling,” Conlin boasts. “She was very forthright, strong, and direct. I really loved being able to play her for so many years. I was grateful.” As for a favorite memory during her time spent portraying Montenegro, there isn’t necessarily just a single moment, but rather “being able to have spent that much time with people laughing.” While certainly there are memorable episodes, she says, “We laughed a lot shooting the show. It’s a really nice way to look back on it all. There were a lot of hours in that lab, and I feel lucky to have spent so much time laughing with everyone.”

Composure Magazine – Schedraui Bags

Story from the 15th issue of Composure Magazine, print is available here
Read the full article at Composure Magazine.

The sisters behind Schedraui are spreading the love (and more than a little style) with their luxe handbag line.

Story by Min A. Lee

When Salvadoran and Lebanese sisters Grace and Stephanie Schedraui (pronounced Che-drow-ee) came together to create the perfect bag for any woman, it wasn’t a spur of the moment decision. The challenges that arise with starting an independent brand can be daunting, but it didn’t phase them. Some would think working with family has its own difficulties, but “we grew up in a home where we were encouraged to dream big and work hard to achieve those dreams,” says Grace. “We were surrounded by a very positive environment where we were always challenged to learn and serve as much as possible.” With Stephanie’s fashion degree from the Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising and Grace’s background in business and franchise management, they had the perfect balance of knowledge and skills to launch Schedraui in 2012.

The sleek design of a Schedraui bag is only surpassed by the incredibly high quality leather. “In our collections, you will always see leathers with beautiful embossing and soft textures,” says Grace. Initially, the sisters sourced materials from various places around the world, but they eventually moved their production to Italy, home to some of the finest artisans in the fashion industry.

But what really makes a Schedraui bag stand out against the rest are the beautiful, positive words engraved on them. From “Where there’s a will, there’s a way” to “Love will always be the answer,” each piece holds a bit of uplifting wisdom, a nod to their father’s influence. “What changed [my father’s] life and made him take a different path than the majority was reading motivational books and positive thinking,” says Grace. “Both he and my mom, they always encouraged us to work hard for our dreams, to be givers, to leave a legacy. So we decided we wanted to give those messages back to the people around us by engraving inspirational messages on every product of our brand.”

Schedraui bags definitely command attention visually, but with the inspirational story behind the line, the bags are even more appealing. Taking it a step further, a portion of each sale goes toward charitable causes, making it easy to become lifetime supporters of the brand. “Our parents founded this NGO in El Salvador named FUNDABECAS,” says Grace. “It was created to grant scholarships to Salvadoran children, to help them realize their dreams. So when we started our brand, we decided we wanted to build the habit of ‘giving back’ from the very first year of our company by donating a percentage of our sales to this foundation.”

As the Schedraui sisters continue to grow their label, they face financial and marketing challenges typical of an independent accessories brand. “One of our biggest challenges is moving to New York, knowing no one, and having to start our brand from zero in a new market,” says Grace. But she’s confident about her product. “Once they buy one, they are hooked for life because we offer excellent quality and craftsmanship. Also, our bags are very comfortable and functional, which is why our clients always come back to us.”

So the next time you find yourself looking for a new addition to your handbag collection, you just might want to consider Schedraui, knowing that you’re purchasing more than just an accessory. As one of their engraved handles says: “Be a light to others.”

Shop Schedraui at schedraui.com or Flying Solo in New York City. 

Composure Magazine – Valentine’s Day Picks

Read the full piece at Composure Magazine here.

Our favorite picks for this Valentine’s Day!

Story: Min A. Lee

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DressAbstract Reversible Trench (Limited Production), $595, dressabstract.com

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Klasse14 Volare Dark Rose Watch with Mesh Band, $245, klasse14.com

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Gorilla Socks in Mr. Pink, $16, gorilla-socks.com

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Rozaliya Chakra4 Rose Quartz Earrings, $790, rozaliya-jewelry.com

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WOODZEE Lily Wood Sunglasses, $100, woodzee.com

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HOTLIPS by Solange Ring in Bombshell Red, $95, hotlipsbysolange.com

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Martial Vivot New York Beard & Face Oil, $48, martialvivot.com

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Protect My Shoes Inserts in Rose Garden and Rogue, $19.95, protectmyshoes.com

 

Composure Magazine – The New Neutral

Trend story for Composure Magazine from the latest print issue currently available here

The New Neutral: Take a softer approach to the season with variations on one of Pantone’s spring colors of the year, hazlenut.

Story by Min A. Lee

Full Article here.

Composure Magazine – Skylar Grey

The current cover story of Composure Magazine‘s 15th Issue: Skylar Grey

Five-time Grammy Award-nominated artist Skylar Grey talks about her latest album “Natural Causes,” the music industry, and being true to one’s self.  

Photography by Benjo Arwas
Photographer Assistant Brandon Wholihan
Styling by Monty JacksonThe Wall Group
Makeup by Jenna TuckerTomlinson Management Group
Hair by Bobby EliotTomlinson Management Group
Story by Min A. Lee
Video by Jonathan Navales

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An Excerpt: 

Scroll through the comments on Skylar Grey’s YouTube channel and you’ll find a common sentiment: “She sings from somewhere deep inside.” If you’ve ever heard her music — hauntingly beautiful, sinful yet sweet — you’re likely to agree. Her alluring vocals pull you in, and you understand immediately why Grey has been nominated for five Grammy Awards and holds a number of multi-platinum records. Yet despite her accolades, Grey doesn’t let the attention and fame drive her creativity. Her popular collaborations, such as “Love The Way You Lie” with Eminem and Rihanna and “I Need A Doctor” with Dr. Dre, offer only a peek into her genius as a singer and songwriter.

Her latest album, “Natural Causes,” unfolds a new chapter in the Skylar Grey saga, weaving you in and out of new stories and sounds. The chords and bass never overpower her vocals, creating a beautiful balance among all the underlying acoustics. She blends several themes throughout, pulling inspiration from three particular contemporaries. “I’ve been studying recently Kendrick Lamar, Bon Iver, and Radiohead,” says Grey. “As much as they are very different artists, there are things that tie them together. I feel that there is a blending of genres happening in some of these artists. Kendrick, for example, uses a lot of interesting chord changes that remind me of Radiohead. And Bon Iver, who’s collaborated with Kanye West, does this crossing-of-genre thing, and I think I do that, too.”

The way we see it, Grey is a genre all her own. There is no one way to describe her music other than it pulls at your emotions, even the deep, hidden ones. On closer inspection, “Natural Causes” incites love, hate, and every feeling in between. Take, for example, “Kill For You,” which reunites Grey with prolific rapper, writer, and producer Eminem. It carries forceful lyrics that spin the story of Bonnie and Clyde and speak of a dangerous love that can push you to the brink. It tells “both sides of the story” while exploring “different vocal approaches,” says Grey, and the process by which it came to be is the very epitome of Grey’s unconventional artistry. The collaboration started as a simple series of beats that Eminem shared with Grey with no definitive intention.

“I didn’t ask [Eminem] to put a verse on it initially,” she says. “Two weeks before my album was due, as he was tweaking the mix, I thought, ‘Hey, what do you think about adding a verse to this because I always felt it could be really cool to be a duet?’ Over the weekend he [gave it a shot], and when he turned the song back in to be put on the album, he had a verse on it. That was the first time I heard it — when he was turning it in! I was pretty stoked.”

When it comes to writing, Grey doesn’t abide by any rules. “What works one time doesn’t necessarily work the second time,” she says. “I don’t limit myself to recreating the same thing over and over again. Usually it doesn’t work out like that for me. I try to keep an open mind.” This kind of open-mindedness seems to be the foundation for her raw, candid, and “from somewhere deep inside” quality of music. It’s also what leads to the type of creative mentorships and relationships Grey has built around her, like her ongoing collaborations with Eminem, forged by intuition, confidence, trust, and good old-fashioned hard work. And building upon said foundation, she remains involved and engaged, always holding true to the heart of her vision, whatever it may be in the moment. “When it comes to my own stuff, I like to be a part of the production just because I’m such a music nerd that being confined to just doing a melody or lyric — it gets old,” says Grey. “I like to be involved with chord changes, the sounds, but I also don’t trust myself 100 percent to do it all myself, so I like working with people who can bring their expertise in and bring fresh ideas to the table.”

Another hit track off the album, “Lemonade,” showcases the same organic, avant-garde artistic stylings of Skylar Grey. She explains: “Lemonade was originally a different beat by Symbolyc One aka S1, a producer. He had given me some beats to write to, and it inspired that chorus melody which was very experimental for me. That triplet feel, it’s something I wouldn’t typically do. I did it almost playfully; I wasn’t trying to be serious and write a song. I was just throwing sh—t out there, and I recorded it. Then I listened back, and it was actually really cool. It grew from that. Originally I wrote rap verses to it, but the chorus was just so strong. Everybody on my team saw that the chorus was so strong, but the verses weren’t quite there at the same level. So we reproduced the track a bit with Alex da Kid, and the verse chords changed, the music changed, and I rewrote verses to it. It was a rewrite process, but it was because the chorus was so special to us, we wanted everything surrounding it to be just as powerful.”

Read the full article and pick up the latest issue print issue here

Composure Magazine – VÉRITÉ

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VÉRITÉ feature written for the current issue of Composure Magazine.

An excerpt:

Vérité pulls you in with her resonating vocals and an intense independence that we all can envy. 

Photography By John Hong
Styling By Franzy Staedter
Makeup By Amber Dreadon
Hair By Tiffany Lee
Story By Min A. Lee
Video By Jonathan Navales

If you haven’t heard of Brooklyn-based artist Kelsey Byrne, who goes by the stage name Vérité, we recommend you look her up immediately. This indie pop artist continues to rise fast, and her YouTube views alone push over 3 million. While high numbers speak volumes, what makes Vérité stand out is her stance against joining a major record label. She is, after all, someone who has worked endless hours at Applebee’s in Times Square for years, so it makes sense that Vérité would create music on her own terms and remain fiercely independent.

Being able to focus on her career without any limitations has led to a sound that we can’t truly categorize as just pop. For us, Vérité should be her own genre. Watching her live performances as she floats from mic to mic, singing her own background vocals, we see how each note is crucial, showcasing her ability to navigate tricky pitches. And now that Vérité has just wrapped up a successful tour and multiple EPs (“Echo EP,” “Sentient EP” and “Living EP”), we have her newly released 2017 single “Phase Me Out” on repeat, with its bold chorus weaving in and out, asking the question, “Don’t you want to stay here or do you want to phase me out?” All we can say is, Vérité is an artist you would never want to phase out.

Composure Magazine: At what age did you first realize your love for music?

Vérité: I’ve loved music since I started performing when I was younger. I haven’t always felt the love, but I’ve always pursued it with laser focus, and I believe love is shown through action.

CM: Growing up playing music, and with your father as well, how does he view your success so far as a singer and songwriter?

Vérité: Both of my parents are obviously stoked for me. They’re driven, ambitious people and have really instilled the hustle in me. My family knows how to get sh—t done.

CM: I also read you played with an all-girl punk band. Can you tell me more about this? Was it a memorable experience for you?

Vérité: We weren’t great, but I f—king loved it and was militant in getting all the rehearsals and shows together. I played electric guitar, my friend played bass, and I recruited random girls from middle school to play drums (expecting they’d know how). We played covers of Nirvana, Green Day, Led Zeppelin, The Donnas, The Cranberries, The Breeders, etc.

CM: Can you share a few artists or bands that influence you and your songs?

Vérité: Everything influences me. The list always changes. Currently: Lewis Del Mar, SZA, Kehlani, Chance the Rapper, Phantogram.

CM: Do you have any method you follow when it comes to songwriting?

Vérité: I don’t question myself, make decisions quickly and edit or change my mind when needed.

CM: Do you have a favorite place or spot you like to escape to and write?

Vérité: I do most initial melodic and lyrical writing when walking or doing random things. I finish ideas in my bedroom and then take them to the studio.

CM: The way you approach the music industry has a very organic and very confident feel to it. Has staying independent from the big labels played a part in this?

Vérité: Absolutely. I have no choice but to be confident. There aren’t many people who are currently taking the route I am. I’m committed to showing people that this route is legitimate and possible.

CM: Do you think you’ll attempt to release an album? Or do you favor EPs?

Vérité: Currently putting the finishing touches on the debut LP.

 

Read the full article at Composuremagazine.com or pick up the latest print issue

Composure Magazine – 88 Handbags & VEERAH

Written for Composure Magazine:

Trying to be more environmentally responsible for 2017? Try eco-friendly accessories from 88 Handbags and VEERAH to get a jumpstart on your New Year’s fashion resolutions.

STORY: Min A. Lee

While fast fashion may be a dominant force in the marketplace, in recent years, there’s been a gradual shift towards slow and ethical labels. As this trend continues to grow, those in the know are taking a second look at the vegan approach to leather, a material noted for its luxuriousness. While some fashion lovers may find it hard to stray from the genuine deal, a couple of accessory labels are working to produce quality vegan leather that can feel and look just as luxe: 88 Handbags and VEERAH Footwear.

No small amount of research and travel went into creating bags and shoes that would sway die-hard leather fans and impress editors and consumers everywhere. Indeed, just one touch reveals that there really is a fine line between faux and real that’s starting to disappear. At times, I wasn’t able to tell if what I was holding was actual leather or not. “As well as being environmentally friendly, it has to look and feel great,” says Alexander Fowler, the founder of 88 Handbags. “It has to have durability, as we want people to love our bags for years. Also, it needs to be affordable so it can be economically viable as we hope it will become an industry standard in the future. We have solved all the challenges except getting the handfeel right, which we are working on now and are hoping to have it ready soon.”

Now, you may think faux leather equals more pollution, but that’s not necessarily the case. 88 Handbags is constantly working towards an earth-friendly solution. “While extraordinarily challenging, we’ve been working for over a year on water-based PU, which would have zero environmental impact,” says Fowler. As for VEERAH founder Stacey Chang, she travels the world to source materials and keep her line ethical. “We were able to find silky fabrics made out of recycled plastic bottles, breathable organic cotton for sock lining, and memory foam cushions that replace 20 to 50 percent of the petroleum typically used with a substitute derived from castor beans,” she explains.

Though the materials are a huge part of what makes these brands fit the eco-friendly category, it’s also the lifestyle they promote while building their brands. Their missions and passions go beyond just producing timeless fashion.

Social causes are important to Chang, and the VEERAH team incorporate a “giving back and self-improvement” mentality. Chang says she created VEERAH to “merge style, quality, compassion, and functionality for women today, who we refer to as #VEERAHwarriors.” To that end, she’s implemented an in-house 1-10-100 Battle Plan: At least 1 percent of VEERAH’s proceeds go to social impact causes (She’s The First, shesthefirst.org, is their current non-profit partner); their employees are paid to do 10 hours of volunteer work and/or improvement courses each month; and for every 100 feedback interviews they conduct, VEERAH sponsors a one-year scholarship for a She’s The First girl scholar. “We aim to grow together and give back,” says Chang.

For 88, they consider their label a “part of a movement,” where everyone works together to create a better world, whether by donating to charities favored by their customers or by sending a message in their choice of fashion. “We hope that by wearing our brand people will look good and also proudly be displaying their values and beliefs in the sanctity of life and the planet we live on,” says Fowler. “A handbag is a very personal purchase as it is a daily workhorse. We believe that by using an 88 handbag you are proudly telling the world that you are committed to a better and more enlightened world.”

And while the lure of fast fashion is strong — after all, being able to buy a $15 pair of shoes every season is hard to pass up — it doesn’t stop VEERAH and 88 from pushing for affordable items that will rise above the fickle nature of trends. 88 keeps prices competitive by being direct-to-consumer with no middleman markups, and they calculate the value to the consumer by its timeless quality and durability. “We don’t want you to use our bag for a few weeks and then throw it away,” says Fowler. “We want you to love her, treasure her, and have her with you for years. We would rather people consume responsibly. In a world where no one needs more stuff, we believe that people are beginning to expect fashion to do more than make them look and feel good. While fashion has to do that, we also believe that it has to do more.”

VEERAH offers a unique way to keep pace with changing tastes: interchangeable, multi-functional accessories that come with each pair of classic VEERAH shoes. This allows you to “multiply your look whenever you need a change,” says Chang. “Buying a pair of VEERAH heels is equivalent to buying multiple pairs of shoes. Our customers can stay fashionably current and maintain a classic sophistication all at once.”

As ethical fashion grows, 88 and VEERAH strive to create high-end quality that will continue to promote changes in lifestyle. Even though you’ll find beautiful designs on 88’s website, [where they sell exclusively to keep costs down], to them it’s about much more. “We are excited about the growing understanding and acceptance of veganism and environmental care,” says Fowler. We wanted to have a voice to promote those movements to bring together people who share the same values. This is about much more than selling handbags. We see awareness and engagement growing every day, as we put our energy on ethics and sustainability.”

While Chang is also optimistic about the future of sustainable styles, she knows that in fashion, the message is not enough. “It is a brand’s job to bring high quality, great design to market,” she says. “Customers are smart and savvy. They will not shop your label just because you are ethical and sustainable. First, you must have well-made, relevant products. Then you can better raise awareness on the impact that one can make — both good and bad. Once people obtain more awareness, this will lead to change on the other side in manufacturing. In turn, I hope it will also become easier to source high quality, eco-conscious materials.”

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Be your own designer with 88 Handbags!

In a collaborative effort, 88 is offering you the opportunity to participate in creating a handbag. Check 88-eightyeight.com for their February contest — send in your design for a chance to see it in their fall 2017 collection!

88 Handbags are available at 88-handbags.com.

To shop for VEERAH, visit VEERAH.com or schedule a private appointment in their Manhattan studio in Greenwich Village by sending an e-mail to veerahwarriors@veerah.com.

Read the full article here.