Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Wednesday Night Musings

I will be the first to admit that I could easily make it onto PETA's shit list for my dietary habits alone. That said, I read an interesting article in Flare magazine that outlined the craftsmanship that goes into one Louis Vuitton bag. It was an interesting, yet nauseating article.

At first, I thought it was pretty cool because I often get flak from friends who complain about how expensive luxury items are. This article was handy because it outlines how much time and effort goes into making one bag, thus why it costs so much. One bag is hand crafted by an expert.

The disturbing part of the article came when I realized how many animals die in the service of creating a purse. For example "[i]t can take up to five alligator skins--to maintain consistency in colour, grain and thickness--to make one of the Fall '10 collection's Carrousel handbags..." The writer also talks about how some of the bags are made of ostrich and calfskin. A quick browse at the rest of the Fall 2010 line shows bags made also of fox fur, crocodile skin, and mink fur.

Perhaps what is most disturbing about my (ever so naive) revelation of the day was when the author nonchalantly mentioned how much of these materials are wasted. "Ostrich, for example, doesn't have a uniform texture, so much of a skin may not be used." She describes how the worker meticulously cuts and measures the skin until "the rest is set aside, likely to be discarded." The writer mentions all of these observations without a hint of remorse.

But what can I say? I'm not perfect. I eat meat. I own leather shoes. But at the same time, reading this article really made me think of how many animals are killed and then wasted in the name of fabulous purses. I don't think any bag is fabulous enough that I could feel ok with 5 dead alligators.

Solution? Buy canvas. Buy faux. I have a closet full of less than 100$ non-leather purses, and I love them all. I'm going to write a letter to the magazine. Its silly, but I'm going to do it anyway.

Posted by: Carla

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