Don’t be fooled by Pansy Maiden’s delicate moniker. When it comes to standing up for animal rights, the handbag-maker is certainly no wilting wallflower. The Massachusetts-based company has launched a line of flirty, feminine clutches, totes, and purses made from 100 percent cruelty-free ultrasuede. Derived from 80 percent post-consumer recycled plastic bottles, the bags are so crisp and supple, you won’t miss real leather or suede for a second.

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“I believe materials made with animal products are completely unsustainable,” explains Laura Collins, the label’s founder, of her decision to use 100 percent vegan materials. “I will never use leather, wool, or silk to build my bags, and I wash my fabric using a plant-based, eco-friendly detergent. When glue is called for, I use an animal-derivative-free brand.”

“I believe materials made with animal products are completely unsustainable,” says Laura Collins, the label’s founder.

In addition to the materials Collins uses, the places she sources from are also sustainable. “The mills where my cotton, twill, Tencel, and hemp fabrics are sourced abide by fair-trade regulations, are GOTS- and SKAL-certified organic, and the dyes they use are plant-based, non-sulfur dyes—no harmful chemical run-off,” she says. And it doesn’t stop there. Collins even donates her fabric scraps to local artists and programs.

And in case you were wondering, Pansy Maiden is named for Pansy Pauline Maiden, Collins’ grandmother, whom she describes as a loving mother, grandmother, and caregiver who could also play a mean harmonica!

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