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Alexander McQueen’s DNA is being used to make bags

Posted by on 21/11/2018

There’s no denying that technology and fashion have become inextricably linked — we now wear everything from smart watches and bracelets to clothing that measures our every movement.

Now comes news that an aspiring designer is crafting clothing out of DNA. Of course, the student – as Dezeen notes – isn’t using just anyone’s genetic information; Tina Gorjanc is using the DNA of late designer Alexander McQueen (who happens to be one of Kate Middleton’s favourite couturiers) to craft leather.

The line’s name? Pure Human.

According to the publication, the leather is made from skin that’s grown in a cell culture using the famed creator’s DNA.

READ MORE: Luxury fashion takes on fitness technology

A bag crafted by Tina Gorjanc for Pure Human.


“After extracting the genetic material and implementing it into a cell culture, Gorjanc’s process involves harvesting the cells into skin tissue. This would be tanned and processed into human leather with the view to using it in bags, jackets and backpacks,” writes Dezeen of the process.

The student, who is attending McQueen’s alma mater Central Saint Martins, said, “The Pure Human project was designed as a critical design project that aims to address shortcomings concerning the protection of biological information and move the debate forward using current legal structures.”

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“If a student like me was able to patent a material extracted from Alexander McQueen’s biological information as there was no legislation to stop me, we can only imagine what big corporations with bigger funding are going to be capable of doing in the future.” (Read the full interview here.)

Speaking to MA Material Futures, Gorjanc added, “Major fashion and cosmetic companies have already signed research collaboration agreement with bioengineering institutes. Those collaborations are enabling the development of existing skin technologies – designed for specific medical problems – into enhancement of normal human functions and the extension of one’s self beyond its body.”

READ MORE: Interactive shelves to virtual dressing – shopping gets high-tech

A bag crafted by Tina Gorjanc for Pure Human.


While the line is conceptual and the skin-growing process isn’t yet perfect, it definitely shows that the fashion industry is evolving and is developing new ways of coming up with couture. It’s also an evolution of something McQueen once did himself.

For his very first collection, Jack the Ripper Stalks His Victims, the U.K.-native sewed pieces of his own hair into each item. That’s actually how Gorjanc got a hold of his DNA in the first place.

What do people think of the news that they could be wearing someone else’s DNA?

桑拿会所 offered up some answers.

McQueen was one of the world’s most famous designers until his death at the age of 40 in 2010. He created clothing for everyone from Lady Gaga to Kate Moss and Anna Paquin.

Visualization by Graphiq

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