Vegan Leather Review: Thamon

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By: Sustainability is Cool
Original Article Link: http://www.sustainabilityiscool.com/sustainability-is-cool/review-thamon

"Im always on the hunt bags both large and small to replace my real leather ones and recently I came across Thamon, a brand that creates beautiful bags through the application of leaves. They offer three ranges in Sal leaf, Lotus flower or cork. 15 % of the revenues of Thamon goes to the leaf harvesters in poor rural areas of South Asia.Todays review will be on a beautiful red bag I used for make up during my recent travels. Before we start the review, as always we have a short feature from a representative from Thamon. Continue reading below...

Q: How is Thamon a sustainable brand?
A: For our core materials, we use leaves and fibres which are not endangered. The leaves of sal tree and lotus are naturally expired, either fallen or dried out by the environment. Cork is being cultivated in Portugal and the industry is supported by the government for a long time. The leaf materials are harvested by the forester communities in India, so any source of additional income associated with their daily activities helps them bring more money to the household, raise children, get education and healthcare. The product dyes are based on natural extracts and don’t contain toxins, contaminating the soil or hard to recycle. We also don’t use a lot of packaging and most of it is paper-based, so it’s easy to recycle too. Overall, we are a small brand and so there’s plenty of rooms for improvement in the future.

Q: What's was the inspiration to starting up Thamon?
A: Me and my girlfriend were students at the University of East Anglia. Thamon was our post-graduation project, established with the help of Student Enterprise team of our uni. The idea came from the general topic of our business plan: using sustainable natural fibres for fashion in London. Initially we focused on silks, cork, recycled plastics and rubber, but over time we designed our own concept.

Q: Whats in the future for the brand?

A: In the future we plan to be Fair-trade certified and use locally sourced sustainable raw materials for our products in Europe and North America. We will also focus on developing even more eco-friendly coating systems for our products. Finally, we hope to find a way of reusing the remaining leaf material from the production in the new sheets of leaf fabric to reduce the production waste.

The bag I got is called the wash bag made of Sal and it comes in two different sizes (I have large) as well as an array of colours. The first thing I noticed was the distinct scent of the bag which I would describe as cold tea. Its not unpleasant, I personally like it but when it comes to scents everyone has their own preferences and some would prefer it to not smell at all. The bag itself fit all my necessities for a weekend trip away which included make up and some smaller travel sized toiletries. The “pleather” is water resistant and although it feels flimsy at first feel its impossible to rip with your hands. I was all in all very satisfied with this and looking to buy some for my friends as gifts.

Pros - The website offers worldwide shipping or if you are in camden you can pop in to their store to feel and discover their range. The bag is also a conversational piece as whenever I pulled it out someone around me got curious about the material. 

Cons - Some of the colours of the range are sold out on the website, also I would want to see the cork range expand for more than products. The scent, if youre not a fan of scented goods."

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