If you love the luxurious feel of fine cashmere AND you care about the Earth, you will love Vegetable Cashmere™ by KD New York. As a true plant-based alternative to traditional animal fiber cashmere, Vegetable Cashmere™ is a smart choice for you and for our planet.
We are KD New York. We have created dance and yoga-inspired athleisure wear for over 40 years. We design, knit, and manufacture ourselves, in the U.S. Our clothing has been worn by celebrities including Jennifer Lopez, Baryshnikov, and Beyoncé (below). We are proud of our legacy. We have spent years developing, testing, and refining Vegetable Cashmere.™ The secret is in the knitting. We are pleased to launch it, here and now ... on Kickstarter.
We believe the future of activewear is garments made from fibers that are natural in origin, cruelty-free in their cultivation, flexible in feel, luxurious to the touch, stylish, fashionable, and sustainable.
- Vegetable Cashmere™ is plant-based; 100% natural; biodegradable.
- It is cruelty-free and farmer-friendly.
- It looks and feels exactly like fine traditional cashmere.
- It is fashionable, stylish, colorful, and ideal for all-day wearability.
- It is washable and easy to care for.
We have launched 13 items, offered as Rewards, at special "first adopter" prices, only available here on Kickstarter.
"Who doesn't love the look and feel of fine cashmere? We launched this campaign on Kickstarter so we can remain independent, and reach a community that believes in true sustainability and innovation. The Vegetable Cashmere Collection features yarn spun from soy protein byproducts, repurposed from the manufacture of tofu. The secret is in the knitting. Vegetable Cashmere™ will deliver the look and feel you will love, AND it's a smart choice for the Earth." - David Lee
ABOUT ANIMAL FIBER CASHMERE
Traditional animal fiber cashmere comes from the soft neck hair of specific breeds of goats, mostly bred in China and Mongolia. Surging goat populations from an un-regulated market is causing erosion and desertification of the Mongolian grasslands, which leads to undernourished goats and a lower quality hair, causing herders to breed more goats to meet the increasing demand, creating a never ending and un-sustainable cycle.
In addition, the Mongolian winter has temperatures at 20 below zero. These goats have very little fat on their bodies and their neck hair serves as important insulation. It's no surprise organizations like PETA have mounted campaigns asking retailers not to carry traditional animal fiber cashmere.
ABOUT VEGETABLE CASHMERE
Vegetable Cashmere is a proprietary, 100% plant-based fabric primarily composed of soy protein spun from pulp borne from tofu production. It requires no additional resources from the Earth to produce. It is soft, silky, and loaded with plant proteins that nourish the skin. It will keep you warm in cold weather, and remain cool and comfortable in hot weather. It's perfect for the yoga mat and dance floor. No goats or animals are harmed or inconvenienced in the production of garments made from Vegetable Cashmere.
"I love this shirt!" - Rodney Yee
- 13 items, available in a variety of colors (see above), and sizes (see chart, below).
- Tops are women only. All other items are unisex.
- All choices are made after the campaign.
- To pledge for multiple items, choose a "combo" reward, using the "points" system.
WOMEN'S TOPS (4)
UNISEX FASHION (7)
Meet The Team
David Lee - Co-Founder and President
After a stint as a professional dancer with the Oakland Ballet and Alonso King's Lines, David founded KD with Tricia Kaye. They moved to New York and set up their own manufacturing facility utilizing state of the art knitting technology to create cutting edge dance and yoga knit collections. David has been on the forefront of trends and always keeps his eyes peeled for the next big thing. David studied knit technology at Stoll Germany and Shima Seiki in Japan. David created KD New York to expand the brand into athleisure beyond its dance origins. The collections have been previously featured in Vogue, Italian Vogue, Elle, and the New York Times Magazine.
Holly Stevenson - Brand Consultant
Holly Stevenson is an accomplished creative director with two decades of experience in brand development. She creates integrated, cross-channel content, and has significant experience with new or novel product launches. An expert synthesizer of the cultural landscape, she crafts authentic and aesthetically sophisticated brand communications that meaningfully connect with audiences. Holly has served on the faculty of Parson’s School of Design and her work has been exhibited internationally. She lives in New York City.
Robin Wagner - Product Design and Development
Robin came to NYC as a designer of stage clothing for nationally touring rock bands. While in NYC, she graduated from FIT with honors and began knitting runway samples for 7th Avenue designers such as Calvin Klein. She’s become a knitwear design and development expert for both sexes, as well as a product developer and merchandiser. She was the founder and creative voice for her own men's lifestyle RTW line, and is a former consultant to the International Trade Centre on women's education in developing countries. Her clients have included Neiman Marcus, Sak’s Fifth Avenue, Barney’s New York, Anthropologie, and American Rag among others. Robin is currently on the faculty at Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising in Los Angeles, teaching fashion knitwear design and programming, product development, and textile-surface design.
Jesse Nepywoda - Operations and Manufacture
Jesse is a knitwear production consultant. He has worked with top factories and designers in the U.S., and has developed a keen understanding of the steps needed to turn a sketch of a sweater into an actual sweater. He also has an established discipline in sales management. In his free time, he plays with his own knitting machines and 3D printers. He has a unique understanding of how people and technology function together to produce a great knit garment, and will be key player to ensuring Vegetable Cashmere's success.
We came to Kickstarter for independence and community. Independence allows us to fully control the manufacture and design process to ensure that sustainability standards are highly prioritized. Community allows us to engage with supportive customers, and create interactive dialogue for increasing and evolving the collection.
If you have questions, feel free to ask. David and his team are pleased to engage. At the top of the page on the left there is a small round image of David. Click that, then click CONTACT ME to send your private message.
Risks and challenges
Designing and manufacturing a unique line like Vegetable Cashmere is a painstaking process that requires meticulous attention to detail, from the creation of the yarn, to the knitting. KD has tested Vegetable Cashmere extensively, and has manufactured it in small lots.
KD has over 40 years of experience in designing and manufacturing premium quality athleisure knits, to an established base of customers worldwide. KD will use the fullest breadth of its experience to deliver beautiful product that backers will love and cherish for years to come. With the success of this Kickstarter, KD will scale up operations, and select the best manufacturing options, on-shore and off-shore, as the skill and technology demands.
We are confident that - with success of this KIckstarter - all Rewards will be delivered on time, and at the highest level.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter