Offal isn’t awful

Canvas, leather, fabric and suede, are just some of the materials that you associate with handbag production.

Jocelyn Mather however, a 23 year old design student, has found a new textile that is at the heart of her unique handbag range.

While the products aren’t for the faint-hearted, the 4th year Edinburgh Napier University student has crafted a collection of four statement bags, from a formal clutch to a dainty handbag, using the stomach lining of a Highland Cow, after realising how much of the animal goes to waste.

Jocelyn explains, “40% of the animal is edible but a lot of the ‘off-cuts’ like tripe are used for dog-food…I just thought, this is our national animal, why aren’t we more proud of it?!”

Pinso TRIPE1

Her unusual yet luxurious collection uses tripe as a lining or outer material while the fastenings on the bags are made using the animal’s horns and bull-ring. Jocelyn also admitted that it was hard to get hold of tanned tripe so she attempted the tanning process herself in the bath.

During production further complications were met when wildlife officers visited Jocelyn’s flat.

“My letting agent had been carrying out an inspection in my flat and had obviously come across a pair of cow horns”, Jocelyn said. “But he had thought they were ivory tusks and called the police! I was terrified, but they just laughed when they saw the horns.”

The budding designer hopes her creations go some way to make people think differently about animals. In this day and age of mass-farming a great degree of produce goes to waste. Jocelyn said “I wanted to show more respect for this stunning animal by using its less palatable pieces to create something beautiful and unique.”

Ian Lambert, Subject Group Leader: Art Design & Communication, said: “Jocelyn’s designs are thought provoking and like much of the work set to go on show, executed to a high standard. This year, our students have created innovative and visually delightful projects and our Degree Show offers a fantastic showcase of Scotland’s next generation of creative talent.”

Jocelyn Mather’s four statement bags will go on display at the Edinburgh Napier’s Degree show which opens on Friday 24th May at Merchiston Campus and runs until Sunday 2nd June.
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