As someone who started sewing from a very young age because I couldn't find what I wanted to wear in the shops, I completely understand the fundamental importance of dress in the expression of identity. For this reason it's always been key for my mental health to feel like I'm wearing clothes that feel right on the day, every day. Dress is about so much more than just cloth. It defines us to the world through our own heart and eyes. Hence why, despite not being a vegan myself, I'm always more than happy to try and create vegan options for those who need them.
Ben's beret is a part of his uniform, so it had to be as close as possible to the original wool and leather one he was provided by the army. Admittedly it took several trials: fabric swatches, pictures and samples going backwards and forwards between me and Ben. But in the end we succeeded in creating something good enough in shape for his chain of command and most importantly, made from materials which agreed with Ben's convictions. I was really glad to hear people in the army were impressed with my work and open to more servicemen exploring vegan options for their uniform in the future.
"Veganism isn’t only about the food I eat, it’s a deep philosophical belief of mine that shapes many of the decisions I make on a daily basis. I wanted to wear a uniform that supported my beliefs, unfortunately I couldn’t find military berets that weren’t made of wool and leather. I spoke to numerous hat makers, none of which said they could help. Thankfully I found Anna and asked if she would be willing to help create a vegan friendly beret and she was more that happy to help. I couldn’t recommend her highly enough. " Ben