Remember back in the day when “vegan fashion” was an unknown concept? When all we had to choose from were floral clogs and “pleather” jackets that made a plasticky noise when you put them on?
Yeah, those days are gone. Today, wearing vegan means having easy access to an array of choice, and the style factor has never been higher: more and more brands are realising that compassionate consumers are an exciting new target market, and are turning to experts to help them capitalise on the growing influence of veganism in fashion.
Case in point: everyone’s favourite boho-chic brand Free People, who have now teamed up with PETA to create a colourful lookbook packed with vegan-friendly summer designs, all bearing Free People’s signature bohemian flair.
After winning PETA’s Compassionate Business Award in 2016 for their vegan fashion selection, Free People is now showcasing that selection in a PETA lookbook starring actress and America’s Next Top Model winner Sal Stowers, Playboy model Bryana Holly and yoga teacher and model Michelle Weinhofen. Highlights of the collection include platform sandals, printed summer dresses, wide-leg trousers and the most gorgeous vegan leather jacket we’ve seen in a long time.
“Free People is excited to work with PETA to continue highlighting kind and sustainable ways to get dressed,” says Abby Morgan, Free People’s director of brand marketing. “We dedicate an entire section of our online store to animal-friendly fashion as demand for vegan options continues to rise.”
“My personal style? If Stevie Nicks was a yoga teacher”, says Michelle (whose husband Jona Weinhofen, aside from being part of the band I Killed the Prom Queen, is also an outspoken vegan activist) and the Stevie Nicks vibe does shine through in this Seventies-inflected styling. The floaty fabrics, the dreamy prints – it’s a retro-fashionista’s paradise. Vegan, of course.
“I’m simple – I love to just throw on a cute tee or a tank top”, says Sal. Since most tees and tanks are vegan-friendly, we’ve got no issue with that. But we also think she looks stunning in this jacket and trouser combo, expertly topped off with the on-trend rose gold sandals.
Michelle continues: “the biggest misconception (about vegan fashion) is that people don’t know about all these innovations being used, like recycled plastic bottles, pineapple leather and all the alternatives to wool and down. We don’t have to use fur or skin.”
The lookbook perfectly captures the essence of fun-loving, carefree style that Free People have become known for – and that translates effortlessly to the very Instagrammable aesthetic of breezy summer fashion that we’d all love to obtain, but that has been out of reach for vegan shoppers for some time due to lack of choices that resonate with the contemporary consumer. This is only one of the many pieces of proof of how far vegan fashion has come.
See more info on the collab and the collection here.
Watch the behind-the-scenes video
All photos courtesy of PETA