Mycelium is making headlines around the globe as a viable bio-product for making helmets, packaging materials, shoes and even coffins. Biomaterial experts at California-based MycoWorks are working with a proprietary leather alternative called Reishi that was used in a luxury hat collection as the first fashion release of the product.
The Fine Mycelium biomaterial takes center stage in the Reishi Collection by luxury hatmaker Nick Fouquet. The trio of hats includes the Reishi Boletus bucket hat. In addition, there are the Coprinus and Morchella hats, one of which is an Ecuadorian-style straw hat that features a Reishi band. The other is a suede felt design with Reishi band and binding. Further, all hats are made at the Nick Fouquet headquarters in Venice, Italy.
“We are elated that consumers can now wear and enjoy designs made with Reishi,” said Sophia Wang, MycoWorks Co-Founder & Chief of Culture. “MycoWorks partners with craftspeople and brands with whom we share artistic values, which is why we’ve partnered with famed hatmaker, Nick Fouquet. This Reishi collection exhibits the unique hand feel and versatility of our material.”
Moreover, mycelium is a prolific underground wonder. As the root structure of mushrooms, it’s endlessly renewable and very adaptable to different growing requirements. Additionally, as an animal substitute, mycelium performs with a strength and performance that lowers the impact on the environment and doesn’t harm animals.
Reishi is a natural material, so it makes an excellent, high-quality, wearable item. In fact, Fouquet’s collection was developed in alignment with his goals to avoid plastic in favor of earth-friendly options.
“Our clients want luxury made from materials that feel good and that they feel good about,” said Nick Fouquet. “MycoWorks’ Reishi is the only leather alternative we’ve seen that matches the beauty, quality, and functionality of traditional leather. Reishi feels organic and rich, and has a beautiful, worn patina that we showcase through the distinct styles of our Reishi Collection.”
This is one of many collaborations MycoWorks has in the works for the Reishi material, so we expect to hear much more about it in the future.
Images via Aysia Stieb