Veganism is sweeping every realm of our existence. What started with human food habits had slowly pervaded into various other aspects of our day-to-day life. From clothes and cosmetics to now bags, vegan is omnipresent. In alignment with this much-needed movement to conserve the environment and stop cruelty against animals, Sarjaa, a homegrown, premium plant and fruit leather-based handbag brand, introduces India’s first collection of merchandise made of apple skin leather.
In a swanky launch soiree that took place in Ramoji Film City, Hyderabad, the debut of these vegan handbags for women drew connoisseurs and people with green thumbs from pan India. Usage of vegetables, plants and fruits like pineapple for making leather has been taking place. But this is the first-time apple skin is used as leather to make these chic vegan bags.
The South-based e-commerce label, Sarjaa is the brainchild of Anjana Arjun, a 26-year-old sustainable fashion, art and environment enthusiast. This young green entrepreneur is the daughter of South superstar Arjun Sarja. The name Sarjaa has several layers to it. Anjana’s grandfather had the same name, which intertwined with their family tree. It is a sign of infinity and the giver of a long and happy life. Coincidentally, it all aligns with Anjana’s ethos. Prior to the launch, Anjana, took it to her social media and gave this hint.
After identifying a need for high-end, luxury handbags manufactured with materials obtained responsibly, this brand was born. Likewise, it fits with Anjana’s lifestyle philosophy of choosing a long-term sustainable one.
Anjana, Founder, Sarjaa, with her vegan bag
While interacting with Slurrp, explaining the making process of these bags, Anjana shared, “The raw material, i.e., the vegan leather, is sourced from overseas. The extract of apples after making the juice goes wasted. The leather is made out of such extracts along with a few other processing steps. The skin or peel of pineapples is also used in a similar manner. The outcome is resilient cruelty-free vegan leather. All the bags are designed and stylised by me.”
So now, one can use a vegan leather bag sans the burden on the heart of taxing the environment or causing harm to the fauna world. Sarjaa is currently offering a range of six styles of vegan bags, such as Pracheen, Sebu, Dua (tote bag), Punya, Kala and Kenti. Sebu means apple in Kannada, and justifying its name, it is made with apple skin leather, the lining is organic cotton, and the zips are made from 70% post-consumer recycled metal.
Pracheen Sangria, Image Source: Sarjaa.in
Despite being vegan, there is no compromise on the style quotient. The designs are timeless, elegant, chic and urbane, catering to women of all ages. They are functional and handy. According to the brand’s claim, the lifespan of these products is nearly 10 years. Each is an art in itself, beaming opulence and swank, yet swearing by sustainability and environment friendly.
Vegan bag, Sebu Salt
These are exquisitely handcrafted using fruit leathers such as apple skin (first-of-its-kind in India), pineapple and cactus leather. The inner lining has ethically-sourced silks and cotton. The metal fitments for the zipper and handle are from recyclable aluminium.
Anjana has experience working with major fashion houses like Proenza Schoule and Elie Tahari. The brand has debuted with a range of eco-chic and functional handbags; later, it will branch out into other industries. These bags are available on the brand’s website, sarjaa.in.
Note: Earlier, EnviGreen, carrier bags that resemble plastic pouches, was launched by entrepreneur Ashwath Hegde, a Mangalore native living in Qatar. He had developed this eco-friendly substitute for plastic bags, which do not hurt animals even after they chew them. Natural starch and derivatives of vegetable oils are some components used to make them.