Hermès launches a mushroom-based leather bag



The French house Hermès has been working for the last three years to redesign its famous Victoria Bag, along with a biotechnology company in California. The sustainable alternative will be available by the end of the year. 


Hermès, the French luxury brand that is famous for its Birkin bags made in exclusive (and sometimes controversial) materials such as ostrich and crocodriles, is taking one step closer to sustainability by producing its first vegan-leather bag. The classic “Victoria” bag will be redesigned and made out of a mushroom-based material called Sylvania. 

To make the sustainable bag, Hermès has partnered with California based start-up MycoWorks. They have been working together for the last three years to develop the start-up’s patented Fine Micellium, a mushroom-based textile, into a leather-like material called Sylvania. Victoria bags will be made out of the newly developed leather substitute, along with other elements and calfskin. The production will be finished in France, where Hermès workers will tanned the Sylvania, and shape the final details to meet the house’s standards of production. 



“We could not imagine a better partner than Hermès to present our first object made of Fine Mycelium. Hermès and MycoWorks share common values of craftsmanship, quality, innovation, and patience” -  MycoWorks CEO Matt Sculli.  



“MycoWorks’ vision and values echo those of Hermès: a strong fascination with natural raw material and its transformation, a quest for excellence, with the aim of ensuring that objects are put to their best use and that their longevity is maximized. With Sylvania, Hermès is at the heart of what it has always been: innovation in the making.” - the Artistic Director of Hermès, Pierre-Alexis Dumas, added.


Sylvania is a hybrid of nature and biotechnology. This new and rather unlikely collaboration calls for innovation towards sustainability in the Fashion industry. The mushroom-based Victoria bag is said to be released by the end of 2021.



Hermès is the latest fashion house that has partnered with sustainable start-ups. Last year, Stella McCartney, Adidas, and Kering have partnered with BoltThreads, to produce another variation of mushroom-based leather-like materials. Their products will also be available in 2021 to purchase. 


*Header image credit to Coppi Barbieri


+ Words: Leila Salinas, Luxiders Magazine 

Journalist | Berlin-based 

Connect with her on LinkedIn or Instagram (@leisalinas)