Vegan in Vogue
With a family business focused on leather exports and armed with an accessory design background, Arture was a natural progression for the 26-year-old Shivani Patel. Except that it wasn’t a leather brand. “There were a lot of people coming to me for designer quality products that were not made in leather,” she says. “I realised that all non-leather brands in the market were using synthetic or plastic-based alternatives and could not match up to the quality and finish of leather goods,” she adds.
After some research, Patel chanced upon cork fibre, experimented with it, and launched a crowd-funding campaign in April 2015. “We went into production with the pre-orders soon after,” she says adding, “cork is naturally waterproof, anti-fungal and lightweight. The best thing is that it does not require chopping down of a tree but is made by harvesting its bark,” she says. Patel is now experimenting with hemp and nettle, both carbon negative crops. The brand offers card cases, wallets for men and women, handbags, passport sleeves and more through its website and stocks at select stores in the city as well.
Shivani Patel at her studio