The couple launched Kalo, a vegan handbag range made out of leather sourced from apple skins, in November 2022. In less than 12 months, their range was stocked in Arnotts department store. Kate and Michael set up Kalo with big ambitions in addition to their full-time jobs. Kalo was selected as the winner of Pitch 23 by the Brown Thomas Arnotts retail group, earning a €10,000 business development fund as well as space in the Henry Street store and a presence online at Arnotts.ie. Kate and Michael celebrated the milestone after researching vegan possibilities and sourcing Italian apple leather, a by-product of the apple juice industry. They intend to invest the prize money in production and increase their stock levels. They currently have two styles available in three colors. Kate has more than 36,000 followers on Instagram while the brand’s Wearekalo account has almost 8,000 followers, and she has been working on producing content for well-known fashion and beauty brands. She believes that sharing behind-the-scenes content on social media and showing the journey is important for the success of a business.


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