Substance and style – Meet the Welsh entrepreneur looking to make fashion more sustainable

The apparel, accessories and footwear industry is currently the worlds largest e-commerce sector and is valued at around $759.5bn. Much of the sector is made up of fast fashion, and with the industry expected to grow into a trillion-dollar market in the next five years, it’s unlikely to slow down.

Big industry value comes with big industry problems and some reports credit the sector with producing 1.2 billion tonnes of CO2 equivalent per year – more than the shipping and aviation industry combined. The World Economic Forum lists the fashion industry as the planets third-largest polluter, and responsible for 5% of all greenhouse gas emissions.

However, one Welsh Entrepreneur is doing her part to slow things down and make high-quality fashion more sustainable.

26-year-old Moray Luke from Porthcawl first fell in love with fashion after seeing Marie Antoinette at the age of 10. Now, 16 years later, the entrepreneur has produced her own collection of designer bags, represented Wales at the London & Paris Fashion shows and started growing her brand with plans for further collections, collaborations and products into 2022 and beyond.

Her brand, Moray Luke uses fish leather to make its handbags, a sustainable resource that would otherwise end up in landfill. The business launched last year and has already hit the ground running with its marine collection generating a lot of interest in boutiques across the country.

Despite the nature of the industry, Moray said sustainable fashion will always be at the core of her business as it continues to grow: “There really is a crisis in the industry right now; the production of the materials that make the garments is the main contributor to its impact on the environment. People are buying items from new, wearing them for a short time, and then buying new again.

“All that material has to be cultivated and made specifically for those items. When you consider designer accessories, the materials often have to be heavily treated and altered to give them a stylish pattern or look.

“That’s why we use fish. It already has a beautiful and unique print, so doesn’t require the same amount of resources that bovine or suede does. It’s also already the by-product of another industry – all our leather comes from Scottish salmon so as well as creating beautiful bags, it also cuts down on waste.

“The supply chain is a huge part of what makes fast fashion so damaging to the environment, which is why we are so careful with ours, managing everything from source to product. It’s our mission to make stylish products that have substance and last, whilst also limiting our footprint as much as possible.

“I firmly believe that as the industry develops alongside a world that will be increasingly affected by the impact of climate change – it will be the brands that adopt a sustainability-first ethos early that will have the advantage. As more people become aware of their own impact on our planet, they will be more likely to reflect that in their purchases – and those making quality products that don’t cost us our earth – will have a head start.”

For more information on Moray Luke and sustainable fashion, you can visit