Vegan leather handbag brand A_C has today unveiled an innovative fourth collection and announced it will be moving to a more sustainable ‘on demand’ business model. Titled ‘Sankalpa’ the range is made from Sileather®, a 100% recyclable fabric that originates from the Silica Sand family, as well as Desserto cactus leather.
The collection of timeless classics includes a bucket bag, shopper and belt bag in Black cactus or Tan silicon leather. It also sees the return of the best-selling Peta Pouch, which was previously on offer in Black or White, and makes its debut in Tan.
Each piece is incredibly versatile, featuring all the functional essentials for everyday use like generous internal pockets, dog clips and removable straps; while a sleek and minimalist aesthetic, custom hardware and contrast edging means they’re elevated enough for a night out.
In an effort to avoid overproduction, this collection will be manufactured on demand and A_C will reward those who support their vision of zero waste with a discount timeline that favours early adopters – a reverse of the usual discount methodology. Customers who place their order within the first fortnight will receive 20% off, or 15% for those who pre-order two weeks later, the brand will then work with their ethical factory to fulfill those orders as well as a limited amount of additional pieces to retail at full price for the season.
“‘Sankalpa’ means an intention formed by the heart and mind – a solemn vow, determination, or will. It is the determination or the will in the mind which precedes all actions,” says A_C founder and designer Tessa Carroll. “Much like my previous collection, this range was designed with intention and is a physical representation of the brand’s purpose. A_C’s mission is to create timeless modern classics where the only thing ‘new’ is the innovative textiles used.”
Last year, A_C was the first brand in Australia to work with Desserto, an award-winning plant-based leather alternative derived from the cactus plant ‘Nopal’, or ‘Prickly Pear’ as it is most commonly known. While Sileather® is not a new innovation in textiles, its use within the fashion industry is, with A_C leading its entrance to the market.
Sileather® is a PU and PVC-free sustainable performance fabric that combines the texture of leather with the superior advantages of 100% silicone – inherently durable, long lasting, luxurious to touch, waterproof and easy to clean. The production process is 9x less carbon intensive than PU, and unlike PU and PVC fabrics, Sileather® does not use solvents or chlorine in any of the production process. Lastly, it does not leak VOC emissions throughout its life and is 100% recyclable.
A_C is proudly partnering with local recycling centre EcoActiv to recycle each bag once it has reached its end of life – offering a ‘buy back’ program when customers return their bag to the brand in exchange for a gift voucher for their next purchase.
“My intention is to provide a bag that can return to the earth the way it came,” says Carroll. “Working with Desserto cactus leather, I am able to offer a partially biodegradable plant based ‘green-leather’ to the market while introducing Sileather® permits me to give a second life to my products through end-to-end recycling. The design journey from concept to construction is a considered one. Working with recyclable, innovative, plant-based textiles is integral to upholding both A_C and my personal values.”
Founded in 2018, A_C develops ranges using innovative plant-based leather alternatives and donates to carbon sequestration projects through an impactful Social Enterprise model. With an emphasis on transparent supply chains, the business is built with the circular economy top of mind.
Priced between $179 – $479 the new ‘Sankalpa’ collection opens for presale Thursday 30th September 2021 exclusively at www.ac-official.com.