Sustainably Chic

Style with Cork | Eco-Conscious & Cruelty-Free Handbags

Fashion, Fashion Pt. 5Natalie Kay

Nina Bernice

I remember the first cork item I owned - it was a pen and matching diary, and I was 10. The only cork I knew of were in my parent's wine bottles, so I thought I was pretty cool toting those things around. It's been a while - well, 17 years - since I've owned anything made of cork. It isn't the easiest to come by, which is surprising to me. Cork is an amazing leather alternative, and it has such a unique look. It is always exciting to find brands like Nina Bernice who are breaking all the traditional handbag rules, and truly stepping the game up. A Melbourne-based eco-conscious handbag brand, Nina Bernice is merging sustainability, function and elegance into one. Their accessories are perfect for the modern women who seek the simple life yet love making a statement.

Nina Bernice and I agree, fashion can inspire us to share our passions with the world. What you choose to wear makes an impact, and sharing what you wear can influence the minds around you. With Nina Bernice, the handbags advocate for cruelty-free fashion. Their line is free of any animal products and is 100% vegan. Since they wanted to keep their carbon footprint low, choosing cork was a no-brainer. They knew the cork oak tree in Portugal was harvested without any damage to the environment. After harvesting, the tree is able to regenerate and stay healthy. Pretty wonderful, right?! Plus, for every bag sold Nina Bernice has partnered up with WeForest to plant a tree in reforestation projects within India.

Did you know cork is waterproof and abrasion resistant? This makes for quite a durable bag - one you can easily clean and use time & time again. Nina Bernice handbags are lined with unbleached cotton fabric, and have several compartments for organizing all your daily necessities. I'm going to start sharing the collection with the Natalie Crossbody - naturally, eh? 

The Natalie Crossbody can be worn two ways - across the body or as a shoulder bag {the straps are easily adjustable!}. It closes with a magnetic snap, and has three pockets - two on the inside, and one on the outside. The gold detailing on the strap makes it easy to dress up for a day on the town - like I'm doing on the back roads of gorgeous Charleston ;)

The Olivia Cork Tote is the perfect everyday handbag. It has amazing divided compartments, and even metal feet to avoid dirty floors. Like the Natalie, it is also versatile, and can be worn two ways {comes with a removable strap, too!}. I've gotten a ton of use out of this bag already, and can already see the potential in how well it will hold up. {Check out this Fair OOTD from last week featuring the Olivia} 

Last - but not least - the Cate Cork Clutch is elegant, sophisticated and my go-to for date nights. I've been looking for an 'evening' bag, but finding a tasteful, practical one was difficult. The Cate is exactly what I was looking for! Just think how beautiful it would be with an ethically-made LBD... Fair OOTD in the making! 

To shop the collection & add cork into your life, click here.

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