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A bag from Tina Gorjanc’s ‘Pure Human’ collection
A jacket from Tina Gorjanc’s ‘Pure Human’

Designer plans to create clothes from lab-grown McQueen skin

Tina Gorjanc wants to make a range of leather goods using skin grown from Alexander McQueen’s DNA

In today’s, um, rather strange news, a designer is planning to making a range of “human leather” goods using skin grown from Alexander McQueen’s DNA. 

Tina Gorjanc has sourced the late designer’s DNA from his first collection, ‘Jack the Ripper Stalks His Victims’, the labels of which comprise of a single lock of his hair suspended within a clear plastic pocket. She plans to harvest the DNA from these hairs into skin tissue, which she’ll then tan and turn into human leather. In turn, she’ll fashion this leather into an already-designed collection – dubbed “The Pure Human” – of jackets, bags and backpacks.

At this point, you might be asking why. Well, in an interview with Dezeen, Gorjanc explains – “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,” she says. “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.”

So it’s effectively a comment on data protection, not the brainchild of a McQueen superfan. At the moment, however, the project is still in its conceptual phase – though she’s already created some prototypes (out of pig skin), filed for a patent and persuaded the owner of McQueen’s ‘Jack the Ripper Stalks His Victims’ to give her a hair.

But this isn’t the first time someone has attempted to use human matter to make clothes. In recent years, people have hit the headlines for making pendants out of breast milk and human bones, shoes out of teeth and most recently, a dress out of pubic hair.

Find out more about the project here.