Photo by ES Salmon Leather
SALMON LEATHER \ˈsa-mən ˈle-thər\
n. 1 a: A dyeable textile made from salmon skin—a byproduct of the fish processing industry that usually gets tossed into the landfill—using chemicals that are less toxic than those for tanning mammal hides because fish scales are easier to remove from skin than hair. (Note: no new salmon is killed expressly for its skin.) b: A resilient fabric that is stronger than most land leathers—and does not smell like fish. c: A reliable, affordable source of “sea leather” used by companies such as ES Salmon Leather, One October, Unnurwear, and Skini London in clothing, accessories, furnishing, home decor, and even bikinis.
Salmon leather was recently used in the form of die-cut paillettes by fashion designer Isaac Mizrahi to create an entire ensemble (jacket, dress, open-back shoes) for the Nature Conservancy’s “Design for a Living World” exhibition at the Cooper-Hewitt Museum in New York City.