Joshua Katcher’s ‘Fashion Animals’

| Culture

Or: The Untold History of Animals in Fashion.

If vegan fashion had a posterboy, Joshua Katcher would be it. Katcher, easily the most sought-after menswear designer in the realm of truly ethical fashion, runs his own label, is a lecturer, educator, influentiual blogger – and just wrote his first book.
“I am a designer with a decade of experience, a fashion educator who has taught and lectured at some of the top design schools in the world, and someone who has been following, writing about and interacting with others who care about the ethics of using animals in fashion since 2008. I did everything from partnering with startups who are growing animal protein materials in the laboratory to participating in talks with major luxury designers like Stella McCartney,” Katcher told us. “This is an industry I know well, and I also know how to speak to people inside this industry in a way that inspires and engages without losing my call for total animal liberation from fashion production.”
Katcher is the driving force behind the men’s fashion blog The Discerning Brute, created men’s luxury fashion label Brave GentleMan, was awarded Most Influential Designer of 2015 by PETA and, last but not least, appeared on the cover of Vegan Good Life Issue 02 (just saying). And now a book – and again, in collaboration with this fine magazine. The art direction for Fashion Animals was cooked up here at the Vegan Good Life headquarters in Berlin.

"Katchers takes us from a single bird in New Zealand
to a secret rabbit farm inside a concentration camp."

Katcher has put years of extensive research into the creation of his first book, and it shows: “Fashion Animals lays out an entirely untold history and perspective of fashion that fashion professionals, designers and creatives from the industry won’t find anywhere else. This will transform the way they look at fashion and fashion media, and that those entangled in the book’s dramatic accounts range from Louis XIV to Vogue Magazine’s founder Josephine Redding and from a single feather from a single bird in New Zealand to a secret rabbit farm inside a concentration camp.”
Katcher aimed high: The designer was looking to put out a “very attractive and visual coffee-table style book, full of rare and gorgeous archival images, compelling stories, research and a critical text that looks at how and why animals have been exploited for fashion.” When discussing the art direction for the project, he told us he wanted it “to be a handsome object in and of itself and should appeal directly to creative people.”

"We needed room for very different visuals and
wanted a nod towards classic fashion magazines."

To help with realizing his vision, Joshua got in touch with Eric Mirbach, creative director here at Vegan Good Life and co-founder of multidisciplinary design agency Very Good Looking, which took over the graphic design of Katcher’s first.

“When we started talking about what Joshua was looking for, the first thing I did was actually read the manuscript to really get a grip of what the book was about and what the tonality was. Then Joshua showed me some of the vintage image material he secured for the project and I understood that we needed a visually pleasing but also very inclusive approach to typography. We would need room for very different visuals but also wanted a nod towards classic fashion magazine making.”

Joshua Katcher
as photographed in Brooklyn, NYC
by Eric Mirbach
Inspiration stroke at an Irving Penn exhibition in Berlin. “They had a glass case with vintage Vogue issues and I secretly took a couple snaps of the beautiful typography work they did back then. Since Joshua addresses the role Vogue plays in promoting animal use in fashion, I thought it would be a nice connection there. We then updated it a bit, gave it a bit of a modern twist. It worked really well and the book turned out to be a beautiful object.”


Fashion Animals is out now!

Unveiling the hidden history of the global impact on animals and the environment by the fashion world, from extinction to large-scale industrial confinement.

  • Thoroughly researched and beautifully illustrated.
  • Smart, insightful and a beautiful object
  • Hardcover
  • coffee table quality
  • 280 pages

  • Published by Vegan Publishers as a joint venture with Vegan Good Life magazine in 2019.

    - Share -

    Leave a Reply

    Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *