GUNAS is an independent high fashion label with a cause! Started in 2009 by designer and animal lover Sugandh G. Agrawal, GUNAS's heart and soul scream to be the voice of animals. With an award-winning design and business background, Sugandh, a vegan bag designer, quit her 7-year corporate career as an Industrial designer at KitchenAid to start her cruelty-free fashion brand in New York. Her mission is strong and clear. Animals are NOT meant to be a part of fashion. We can look and feel good without harming other living beings. We need to connect ourselves with what goes on behind the scenes and question our actions and their impacts.
What began as an all-MADE IN NYC label has now gone global to source and manufacture bags and shoes using artisan and small-scale ethical manufacturers from India, South Korea, Mexico, Brazil, and Hong Kong. With styles ranging from totes bags canvas, satchels, vegan backpacks, vegan wallets, and vegan crossbody bags, GUNAS has a bag to suit your every mood and lifestyle need.
GUNAS is committed to using 100 percent vegan and cruelty-free materials. Their products are free of leather, silk, fur, wool, bone, horn, and animal byproduct adhesives. In addition, they use a variety of alternatives in their construction. GUNAS truly offers the best faux leather bags.
Committed to being a 100 vegan brand and offer only vegetarian leather bags.
GUNAS believes that animals are not the “property” of humans.
Strongly against the human nature of bullying & dominating other species.
GUNAS stands up to the mainstream culture of violence & suffering
Highly values justice, empathy, and compassion
Envisioning a world of peace, love, and kindness that starts with each of us.
Advocating conscious consumerism over fast fashion.
Making “victim-free” fashion full of love for all.
GUNAS promises to never participate in any exploitation of the planet, people, or animals.
Veganism is a lifestyle choice about protecting animals by avoiding using objects made from animals, animal by-products, or animal testing. First, let’s understand that Leather is “not” a by-product of the meat industry. Raising animals for food and leather requires vast feed, pasture land, water, and fossil fuels. Turning skin into leather requires massive energy and dangerous chemicals, including mineral salts, formaldehyde, coal-tar derivatives, various oils, dyes, and finishes, many cyanide-based. In addition, most leathers are chrome-tanned, a lot of which gets washed away into fresh water supplies while making leather. People who work in tanneries or live close by often have cancer and lung damage caused by exposure to toxic chemicals used to process and dye the leather. “Non-leather” alternatives account for only a fraction of petroleum used compared to leather. GUNAS offers a large selection of beautiful vegan tote handbags, and shoulder bags handbags
Leather not only causes suffering for the animals but also causes harm to our environment, the people that produce it, and those who choose to wear it.
A dream where the world is full of kindness
"Welcome to GUNAS New York, America’s first 100% Luxury Vegan Handbag Brand! I'm Sugandh (Sue-gun-d), GUNAS's Founder & Creative mind. As an Industrial Designer, an activist, and a fashion addict, I’m dedicated to utilizing my skills and business acumen for a cause very close to my heart. Being a lifelong vegetarian and now vegan, I found a deep disconnect between my eating and fashion choices. Growing up in India, where cows are worshipped and ironically also slaughtered for their meat and skin, I knew I had to do something about it. So on a cold wintery night in 2009, GUNAS was born in the warmth of my studio apartment in Manhattan. I intended to do everything “right” and make a handbag purse and clutch handbags that were not only vegan but also ethically made in a sweatshop-free environment, so I began with a modest 8-piece collection made in NYC. Unable to maintain affordable prices, I pursued production in China. Uncomfortable with non-transparency and factory working conditions, I started my studio in India, where I trained artisans and worked closely with them to make the collections. Finding my path to “doing things right” has not been easy. In a practically non-existent industry that has no formulas to follow and is self-funded, I’ve had my challenges, but my drive to continue doing what I have been having not dulled even for a moment. In 2014 the US Government handed me my permanent residency in the United States based on my work as a Fashion Activist. So I could continue developing the brand and striving to achieve my “American” dream. A dream where the world is full of kindness, everyone is free to live in harmony, and our choices (whether food or fashion) don’t embody any form of cruelty towards people or animals." - Sugandh Agrawal
GUNAS has been delighted and honored by the industry's enormous recognition over the past decade for beautiful vegetarian purses. Besides being featured in top global mainstream media outlets, Fashion college textbooks, TV shows, and podcasts, they've won several titles by some prestigious names in the fashion and activism world.
Here are some of their awards:
Animal, human & environmental welfare is the heart of their brand.
Animal, human & environmental welfare is the heart of GUNAS' brand. Here are some animal welfare groups and sanctuaries they support. In addition, GUNAS has donated significant dollars and products for fundraising or offered special discounts to members who support these charities.
Woodstock Farm Sanctuary - "Rescue farmed animals and give them care and sanctuary, connect animals with people to advance veganism, and advocate for animal rights in alliance with other social justice movements."
Wild Tomorrow Fund - "Biodiversity: protecting and enlarging wild spaces in areas rich with biodiversity. But if we’re going to be successful, we must act now. The race is on to save what’s left."
Vegan Society - "An inclusive community is working towards a peaceful world, free from discrimination and violence towards all animals - human and non."
Vegan Outreach - a 501c3 nonprofit organization working to end violence towards animals. "We seek a future when sentient animals are no longer exploited as commodities."
Jane Goodall Institute - "By protecting chimpanzees and inspiring people to conserve the natural world we all share, we improve the lives of people, animals, and the environment. Everything is connected—everyone can make a difference."
The Gentle Barn - "With your support, we work hard each day to create a kinder world by rescuing animals, giving them sanctuary at The Gentle Barn, and healing children through telling the animals’ stories."
The Humane League - "We exist to end the abuse of animals raised for food by influencing the policies of the world’s biggest companies, demanding legislation, and empowering others to take action and leave animals off their plates."
Texas Veggie Fair - "Free and open to the public with a mission to show how a plant-based vegan lifestyle is good for your health, the environment, and for animals."
HEAL Animal Rescue - "Formerly Animal Friends of Westmoreland, officially opened its doors in 2009. But the journey started long before that. In 2006, our Founder, Candy Valentino, combined her love for animals, especially senior and special needs dogs, with her extensive business experience and founded HEAL Animal Rescue."
Tails Humane Society - "Cares for over 3,400 displaced pets each year. We accept pets from owners who can no longer keep them and Good Samaritans who have found homeless pets. We also work with animal control organizations and another animal shelter to rescue at-risk animals from overcrowded shelters."
Luxury women's vegan shoes, vegan pouch bags, vegan shopping bags, shoulder bucket bags, and GUNAS' other vegan products can sublimate your life, especially when they’re sustainably made.
The mission is strong and clear. Animals are NOT meant to be a part of fashion. We can look and feel good without harming other living beings. Instead, we need to connect ourselves with what goes on behind the scenes and question our actions and their impacts. GUNAS is the ultimate symbol of luxury in a conscious fashion. Intentionally vegan, its practical silhouettes with vibrant colors form the core of the brand’s spirit. This brand illustrates the most rebellious and seductive core of contemporary femininity. Get ready to discover high fashion, vegan tote bags made without any compromises.
GUNAS chooses premium handbag materials and designs that stand the test of time. As a result, their products feel nicer and last longer, on purpose.
Every GUNAS vegan laptop bags, vegan messenger bags, vegan purses, and other products are constructed by hand with only the finest non-animal materials. As a result, their look is one of timeless elegance, continuing the traditions of the world’s most renowned fashion houses with innovation and a future-forward mission.
GUNAS was started to challenge the existing idea that nice things have to cost a lot. Their mission was simple—create vegan handbags of equal or more excellent quality than the leading luxury brands at a much lower price. Because they believe quality should never be a luxury.
Direct from factories, no middlemen.
Minimal packaging and corporate overheads.
GUNAS never cuts corners regarding quality, sustainability, or fair manufacturing practices. As a result, their prices stay low because they avoid the expenses of the traditional supply chain, including sourcing agents, warehousing, wholesaling, distribution, and storefront retail.
The factors mentioned earlier help us to achieve affordability and help customers save money.
Affordable shoes vegan shouldn't come at the cost of worker exploitation. Therefore, GUNAS only partners with factories that meet or exceed global guidelines for workplace safety and equitable wages.
GUNAS values transparency. They're open and honest about the materials in their vegan shoes women, vegan women's wallets, and other products, how they’re manufactured, and how they’re priced. Honesty is always the policy.
It is expressed in CO2 equivalent (CO2e) and includes carbon dioxide (CO2)— the gas most commonly emitted by humans — and other gases (CH4, N2O & fluorinated gases) which trap heat in the atmosphere, causing global warming
GUNAS is constantly exploring new ways to minimize waste and contribute to a circular fashion economy. Their recycled collections use previously used materials in accessories to wear and love for a lifetime. They introduced GUNAS bags crafted using recycled materials.
Producing microfiber fabrics begins by melting down polyester and polyamide pellets in separate vats. At this stage, the liquid polyester and polyamide vats are pushed or extruded simultaneously through jet moldings that contain seventy-two pie-shaped segments.
Firstly, the small size of microfibers means they have to be extruded via a long metal tube.
Next, heat can cool the resulting polyester fibers before they are melded with tiny polyamide strips.
Then, microfibers will often be dyed or subject to chemical treatments that improve heat resistance or provide other desirable qualities.
Finally, completed microfibers are woven into long sheets of fabric.
GUNAS is giving used plastic a second life. Recycled plastic taken from landfills makes their innovative material durable and machine washable.
Plastic bottles are saved from landfills, cleaned, and shredded into chip forms.
The flakes are turned into small plastic pellets through a thermal dissolution process.
The pellets are then melted and spun into yarns before being woven into fabrics to make the perfect vegan leather crossbody bags and other products for your everyday enjoyment.
Metals can be recycled repeatedly without altering their properties. According to the American Iron and Steel Institute (AISI), steel is the most recycled material on the planet. The other highly recycled metals include aluminum, copper, silver, brass, and gold.
The mixed multi-material waste stream. In automated recycling operations, magnets and sensors aid in material separation."
To allow further processing, metals are shredded. Shredding is done to promote the melting process as small shredded metals."
Scrap metal is melted in a large furnace. Then, each metal is taken to a specific furnace designed to melt that particular metal. A considerable amount of energy is used in this step."
Purification ensures the final product is of high quality and free of contaminants. After purification, melted metals are carried by the conveyor belt to cool and solidify the metals."
GUNAS New York creates MulbTex out of mulberry leaves. A process that's been used in Korea for centuries now. The leaves of the plant are pulped to make paper, which is then compressed and laminated over the cotton canvas and glazed with tree sap to have the texture of leather and also become water-proof.
Given that the alternative to leather, suspiciously dubbed "vegan leather," is just plastic, cow leather still wins out on longevity and waste reduction. It is also flexible, breathable, and durable, making it an ideal replacement for animal and synthetic leather. The touch and feel of the material are also soft and very similar to genuine leather. The product is also highly sustainable, with a lower carbon footprint than other leather alternatives.
GUNAS believes in buying less and enjoying longer. The sustainability process starts with us as a brand creating timeless vegan leather tote bags, vegan leather laptop bags, and other vegan products built to last and ends with you loving them for years to come. Their preferred fibers and materials are ecologically and socially progressive to align with the UN's global sustainability goals and standards. Sustainability is at the heart of everything they create, from utilizing low-waste cutting methods and empowering and upcycling leftover materials to using OEKO-TEX® certified non-toxic dyes. While GUNAS doesn't use any leather or animal-derived ingredients in our manufacturing, they do have to rely on synthetics. While some may argue that microplastics leached from synthetic materials are a hazard to the environment, it's a case of worry, mostly with apparel, mainly because they are washed regularly. The water released from this process will get polluted with microplastics. This, however, is not the case with high fashion vegan backpack purses, men's vegan wallets, and our other vegan products, as you won't be washing them. This is a perfect use of technology instead of overuse. Each GUNAS high fashion handbag is handmade with love from artisans around the world. GUNAS carefully handpicks factories in Korea, India, China, and Europe depending on the craft capability and design requirements. Explore GUNAS' preferred fibers, packaging, and practices below.
GUNAS only uses the highest quality recycled polyester and nylon lining fabrics. In addition, their fabric is OEKO-TEX certified and resourced responsibly.
Their oil edge paint was tested through a third-party lab and passed all durability and eco standards. It isCalifornia Prop 65 compliant. It is the same quality used by several other luxury brands.
Microfiber is the strongest alternative fabric available to replace leather. Used in several other industries, such as airports, hospitals, the Navy, and hotels, it is known for its rugged use and versatility in available textures. GUNAS chooses Microfiber vegan leather over PVC and polyurethane (PU) due to its natural, long-lasting nature so you can enjoy your satchels men's, vegan shoes men's, and other products for many years.
Sourced directly from Mexico by the makers of Dessert, GUNAS' Cactus leather bags are a beautiful addition to their plant-based fashion collection. Dessert is a sustainable, cactus-based biomaterial often distinguished by its extraordinary softness at the touch, performance, and rigorous quality while complying with the industry's environmental standards. It is PVC-free, DMF-free, heavy metals-free, and humidity-resistant. GUNAS loves working with cactus as it requires no water for irrigation or chemicals and pesticides for cultivation. In addition, Cactus is a natural carbon sink with great CO2 sequestering capacity.
GUNAS' hang tags are made from recycled paper, and their polybags are sourced from a REACH-compliant manufacturer. They are committed to making a switch to corn-based poly bags by 2025. It is their top priority to reduce as much packaging waste as possible. Since their handbags are crafted overseas, they rely on ocean shipments to transport our handbags from the factories to the US. To provide the best protection during transit over the ocean, they have to give some unavoidable packaging.
Sustainability practices are Clear Givings Market / Gunas New York forte. When you purchase Gunas go-to bags, you're not only getting eco-friendly and sustainable travel bags for women, but you're also supporting ethical employment connections. Clear Givings Market / Gunas New York offers great gifts to inspire you and your significant other, friends, and family.
Treat yourself now, check out Gunas New York at Clear Givings Market! We love how Gunas New York is revolutionizing the vegan leather bags industry and making a powerful difference. Each purchase has a positive impact, providing life-changing employment in areas that lack resources.