27 June 2012

Designer Highlight: Suzanne Lee and Her "Tea" Leather

To all my natural food enthusiasts, imagine you could brew a Komboucha tea into a pair of Jeffrey C. "T-itas"!? Imagine, instead of PU (Polyurethane, i.e. the material that is often used in "vegan leather,") you could make a new type of vegetable leather made from tea cultures?

Well, that's where London-based fashion designer or "design futurist," Suzanne Lee comes in. 2012 TED Fellow and the mind behind the BioCouture Research Project, Ms. Lee has developed a new way to approach sustainable design.



Mixing up a juicy brew of Komboucha-like bacteria cultures plus the added mix of the right temperatures, sunlight and an open mind, she ends up with either a rubbery vegetable leather or a paper-thin tulle like fabric- brewed without the use of chemical dyes, child-labor, or cattle-ranch deforestation- just a bit of the major dilemmas we are dealing with here in our fashion loving bi-continental America (let alone our global fashion compadres).

So check out this TED talk to view the total process, and explore in your mind the ways the wellness beverages you love can not only do wonders for your body, but can help to save the planet too, one bio-couture gown and tea-leather platform shoe at a time.

Peace, love and BioCouture
-T*

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