Chinese designer Meng Du has created a collection of bags made of an alternative leather material produced from leftover grape skins.
The material is made from grape marc or pomace, a byproduct of wine production. The pomace contacts skins, pulp, seeds and stems of the fruit that are a waste product after they have been pressed for wine. This is the same material as we use to make our Grape Extracts.
Du sourced this incredible new leather material from Planet of the Grapes, a French producer of materials and natural dyes made from waste grape skins.
They collect grape pomace from vineyards and dry it under natural sunlight. It is then ground down into a powder and blended with natural ingredients to create a liquid that is poured onto a fabric contracted of stem fibres. It is then left to dry again.
"The entire process takes around four or five weeks, as it starts off with the spreading out and the drying all of the grapes in the sunshine for a couple of weeks," Sam Mureau, co-founder of Planet of the Grapes
"After the grapes are truly dried out they are then used to make the grape leather and then once transformed into sheets of material they are left to air dry, which again takes two or three weeks depending on the time of year," she said.
Around 1,200 grapes are used to create enough material for the large shoulder bag – the equivalent of 0.5 square metres of leather.
Every year, approximately 290 million hectolitres of wine is produced around the world, but most of the grapes used in the process are then discarded and left to waste.
We absolutely love finding new and innovative ways people are using grapes around the world to reduce waste and create now eco friendly materials.