When British Handbag Designer Kathryn Sillince started researching suppliers and processes for making leather accessories while studying at London College of Fashion in 2006, she realised very quickly that there were a very tiny proportion of fashion accessories brands going down the ethical route, and wondered why. It was never going to be any other way, so she set about to creating a brand that would operate in the most sustainable way possible. From how each product is made right down to the day-to-day running of the business and administration.
The way the industry stands at the moment, there is no recognised way of categorising leather for either carbon footprint or ‘organic-ness.’ However, there are groups of people throughout the world working for sustainability & reduction of leathers’ environmental impact, involving constant research. All the leathers used in our ranges are sourced from tanners who share our strict ethical vision. The leather comes from by-products of the food industry. No exotic, endangered hides or fur are used.
Neoprene & rubber solution are widely used in the production of leather goods around the world, no glues or rubber solutions are used in the construction of our handbags. We couldn’t live without double-sided tape and bulldog clips though! All printer cartridges are re-filled or recycled, low energy bulbs are used in the studio. The linings of our products are made with organic (GOTS) Fair Trade cotton and bamboo fabric and are dyed with roots and flowers, or vintage fabrics are sometimes used. Where we print onto dust bags or linings, we use water-based, eco-friendly inks. All our products are either made in our studio in Sheffield, England, or by our friends at our British manufacturer, also in the UK. As the label grows, we will only manufacture in the UK, supporting the British industry and keeping the companies’ carbon footprint at a minimum.
Magpie Accessories Logo
From the very inception of our label, we wanted our customers to see how passionate we are about the environment and how we operate to implement changes within the industry. From how every component of a handbag or accessory is created to the start of each section of the supply chain. All our leathers, linings, thread and even edge-dyes are ethically produced and traceable to the source. We operate in the most transparent way possible and it is our hope that many more fashion labels do so in the future.
We all have the power to shape industries around the world. By taking the responsibility as consumers for knowing how a product is made and by choosing what brands we buy into based on those ethics. This is central to our Ethos, and is why the Magpie logo has green footprints.
We care passionately for the environment, and will be incorporating more conservation awareness and product led collaborations with organisations in the near future.
“Leave a green footprint behind you.”