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For Angela Roi, Luca Nichetto Creates The Malala Handbag In Apple Leather

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Luca Nichetto handbag

Designer Luca Nichetto has made his first foray into fashion accessories. The Malala handbag was partially produced from apples for vegan leathergoods brand Angela Roi. The bag was named after Pakistani education activist and Nobel Peace Prize laureate Malala Yousafzai.


The Malala handbag, created by designer Luca Nichetto for vegan leathergoods company Angela Roi and partially manufactured from apples, is his first venture into the world of fashion accessories.

Malala is Angela Roi’s first piece of clothing or jewellery fashioned of apple leather, a material manufactured from leftover apple processing waste like peels and cores.

Although apple leather is referred to as a “totally plant-based substitute to real leather” on the Angela Roi website, the company explained to Dezeen that the substance is actually a blend of fibres from apples and the polyurethane plastic that is frequently used for vegan leather goods.


Luca Nichetto Creates The Malala Handbag

Then, a cotton-polyester backing material is covered with this apple-polyurethane mixture.

Nichetto Studio claims that the fabric maintains the look and feel of leather and will similarly evolve with use, taking on a softer texture and natural gloss.

According to Nichetto, design should seek solutions by producing long-lasting and sustainable items. This is because of the current global economic crisis, environmental problems, and other factors.

The bag has a striking design with four useful pockets integrated into the top opening and was named after Pakistani education campaigner and Nobel Peace Prize winner Malala Yousafzai.

Its design was inspired by the notion of a cabinet of curiosities or a multi-compartment travel trunk. At the same time, the bag’s design is reminiscent of fast food restaurant potato chip canisters, giving it what Nichetto Studio calls a “pop soul.”

The Malala bag was produced without using any animals, making it cruelty-free. It is made of apple leather from the Italian firm Pelletteria Fusella, which sources its apples from a South Tyrol region orchard.

The orchard produces an estimated 30,000 tonnes of waste, such as cores and peels, each year that were either being taken to a landfill or burned. The orchard’s apples are used for goods like juice and preserves.

According to Angela Roi, the brand can lower the carbon emissions associated with the production of polyurethane bags while still providing the durability that upscale customers need.

Because extending a product’s life cycle is a crucial component of sustainability, petroleum-based components currently play a crucial part in the durability of bio-based leathers, according to brand founder Angela Lee.

“The brand and customer acceptance of the material will determine its potential for effect, and in comparison to leather, most consumers won’t be willing to make significant quality compromises. We haven’t yet encountered a fully plastic-free product that satisfies brand and customer demands for suppleness, robustness, and softness.”

As technology advances, Angela Roi’s goal, according to Lee, is to always seek out better material possibilities and eventually utilise one that is completely plastic-free and biodegradable.

In recent years, polyester yarns have been created that are impregnated with enzymes that, when placed in biodegradable environments, activate to break down the polyester.

“Natural fibres that have been chemically modified to behave like yarns made from petroleum have also been developed. Both alternatives are intriguing and might one day be used as supporting material.”

While numerous plant-based leather substitutes are now available, many of them still include a plastic element, sometimes in the form of a coating, to provide the level of durability that consumers expect from consumer products.

Apple leather that is comparable to this can be found in the Leap fabric from the Dutch business Beyond Leather, which is created by combining scraps with natural rubber, utilising a textile backing and a thin plastic protective coating.


Luca Nichetto was born in Venice in 1976 and attended the Art Institute there. He then pursued a degree in Industrial Design at the University Institute of Architecture of Venice (IUAV). In 1999, he launched his professional career by creating his first Murano glass pieces for Salviati.

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