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Owner: I have been 100% vegan for 1 year, and was vegetarian, striving towards being vegan for the past 10 years.
In business since: October 2003
Sells: cruelty free vintage style glamour accessories, including hats, gloves, stoles, collars, purses, muffs, corsets, pasties and capes
Background: "I've been interested in veganism since high school, where I was introduced to the idea through hardcore punk rock and my concern for the environment. I became vegetarian as soon as I moved out on my own, and did my best to avoid all animal products, in the past year making a commitment to cut them out entirely. I started the company as a way to provide glamorous alternatives to pin-up fans and burlesque performers who love the look of the Golden Age of glamour, but can't stand the thought of wearing animal pelts, and feathers."
"Live simply, Love generously, Care deeply, speak kindly..."
Nichole, a vegan for 23 years. The rest of the staff are not.
In business since: June 2003
Sells (& manufactures): ladies' handbags
Background: Susan Nichole became a vegan in her early 20’s. She never cared for meat as a child and had a strong love for all animals. She made a conscious decision to stop eating meat when a friend introduced her to vegetarian dishes and found out how easy and delicious it was. She never looked back.
After having children she realized that to be true and real about animal rights it wasn’t just about food, it was about leather, fur, etc. In her quest to find leather-free bags she realized there wasn’t much style to what was available. So the journey began. She decided to fill a void that was long overdue. Create beautiful bags at affordable prices that woman would feel good about carrying.
Location: London, UK
In business since: 1919
Sells (& manufactures): faux fur coats, wraps and stoles, fake fur boleros and capes, products for the home such as cushions, throws and rugs
Background: "We are listed on sites such as the World Wildlife Fund and Peta. Our products are craftsmen made in our workroom in London. None of our products are sourced overseas and we offer fantastic value."
Location: New York, NY
The owner is a life-long vegetarian and the assistant is vegetarian as well.
In business since: March, 2007
Sells: Vegan Dress Shoes for Women – (looking to expand to mens by Fall '09)
Background: "The CEO, Arti Upadhyay, started working in the footwear industry about 8 years ago. She had always been a vegetarian and realized that stylish, affordable, vegan shoes were missing in the marketplace. About 2 years ago, she decided to branch off and start a line of her own. Due to her vast experience in the footwear industry, starting a vegan line was a very natural next step for her."
"All our products are 100% vegan. 100% Cruelty Free. Olsenhaus is ethically produced with all non-animal materials, using principals of fair-trade and 100% Vegan owned."
Location: New York, NY
Owner: Elizabeth Olsen became a vegetarian 20 years ago and later a vegan.
Vegan Staff: The one other staff member is vegetarian.
In business since: "Conceptions and production was started in 2005"
Sells: Stylish Fashion-Forward women's shoes & handbags, children's shoes, T-shirts
Green, recycled and
organic materials are used when available.
Philanthropically donations are made to PETA, Greenpeace, The Theosophical Society and Farm Sanctuary.
Background: Owner Elizabeth Olsen on being vegan: "When I was little I always wondered about meat. What is it? Where does it come from? How do they make it? The concept of it was abstract. As a teenager I learned the truth-the horrific cruelty of what was happening to the animals. From factory farming to vivisection, animal testing, fur farms and circuses, as well as the waste and careless damage being done to the environment. I cried and wondered how can this be going on? The manipulation of the public by the media, government, and USDA, all for profit, was astounding. I became a vegetarian, later a vegan, and a voice for animals for 20 years now. I am deeply involved and committed to the shift in consciousness to awareness of the truth, for the freedom of the animal kingdom, and thus the evolution of humankind."
Gathering all of these experiences, and most interested in consciousness, purpose, function, color, art, design, and cruelty- free, Elizabeth created Olsenhaus to merge these concepts into a whole.
"The founding philosophy of olsenHaus is based in the universal truth, respect for all beings, with a dedication to the expression of spiritual truth in the material world.
"We are committed to being 100% cruelty- free, producing functional goods, with a high standard of ethical social responsibility in animal and human rights.
"Products are made of non-animal materials, in sample rooms & factories that are personally checked for ethical practices & environment.
"We wish peace and light for all."