I am always excited to hear about new materials being developed as an alternative to leather that could be used in fashion and other industries. Although many of them are in experimental stages at the moment they should be used much more in a few years when they are widely avaialble. And the demand is very high. So here is a short note on a new vegan alternative material made out of cactus!
Desserto, a 'leather' made out of mature cactus leaves, has been developed by Adrián López Velarde and Marte Cázarez in Mexico. They both used leather in their jobs in the fashion and automotive industries and decided to create a greener alternative. After two years of development, they showed their creation to the world in October 2019 in Milan.
Only the mature leaves are harvested every 6 to 8 months on their ranch in Mexico. The plants live off mineral-rich soil, rainwater and Mexican sun on the fully organic farm. Once harvested, the leaves are dried in the sun with no extra electricity required. Dry leaves are then processed into a patented formula to form the Desserto while the plants in the farm produce new young leaves. The material features qualities similar to natural leather being elastic and breathable. Desserto can be then used to make shoes, bags and clothing, as well as furniture.
Desserto definitely sounds like a great sustainable alternative for leather. I hope to see more from these guys and maybe work with their material in the coming years. Keep it green!
Visit the company website here
all images and video belongs to Adriano di Marti, company developing Desserto