Saturday, October 11, 2008

furrocia coutura.

How do y'all feel about wearing vintage fur? Every fashion blogger inevitably begs the question, but I like to think my readers are a socially-minded cut above the rest, so I need your opinions! Because, well, um...I want to buy some.

Okay, I know what you're gonna say. JUST WAIT. Before you call me tacky and depraved, will you hear me out? Now, I'd never buy any recently produced fur products (though isn't my love of leather quite hypocritical given how terrible the tanning industry is for humans on top of wearing DEAD ANIMAL CARCASS?). I just always wind up freezing my ass off every winter and have no idea how to stay fashionably warm. You know how those PETA-affiliated celebs would rather go naked than wear fur? Well, I'd rather go naked than wear a puffer coat. And PETA, most of your ads are SO EFFING SEXIST, by the way. Racist, too.

I love love love all animals, great and small, cute and ugly, bold and beautiful. I'm good to them, too. I adopted both my kitties from animal shelters, I volunteered at one for six months, and I ALWAYS make the $1 donation at Petsmart. I hate factory farming and the way we treat cattle (especially how we inject them with hormones and feed them grain they can't ingest so they get sick and thus must be chronically medicated). I also HATE that Sarah Palin endorses the shooting of wolves (my favorite animal) from helicopters and hey, did you hear, also wolf PUPS? But on the other end of the spectrum, I eat cheeseburgers and, as mentioned above, wear leather. So I'm conflicted.

I know the general sentiment is that wearing vintage fur is okay because the animal has been dead for decades. This logic makes sense to me, but I read in the same article that promoted this thinking that "vintage leopardskin, however, is always a faux pas, because leopard is an endangered species," which doesn't make a lick of sense. Whether it's fox fur or leopard skin, the animal has been dead for years, which leads me to believe that this celebration of vintage fur is due to some "cool consensus" rather than logical reasoning.

Here's my view: what's done is done. Ignoring the mass of vintage fur pelts out there because of moral indignation won't do any good. From looking at fur capelets on eBay, I'd venture to guess that most of the labels that produced these furs are dead and gone anyway. I Googled one label, Lundberg fur, and it led me straight back to the eBay item I had seen. Also, we're in an economic mess right now. I'm poor. (Will anyone else out there admit to being poor?? I'm looking at apartments in DC because of a potential -- VERY EXCITING OMG! -- job opportunity and at this point, I'll be sharing a cardboard box with three other people for $800 a month.) The best thing about fur, and any vintage item really, is that you can find thousands of fur coats on eBay starting at $9.99 that, with some auction sleuthing, can be purchased for not much more. Does that help my case at all?

Yes, I know, an even better, more socially responsible way to recycle vintage fur is to donate it to your local Humane Society, where it will be used as bedding and nesting materials at animal rehabilitation centers. But can't I wear some, too?

What do you think?


KATLIN said...

I don't like vintage fur. But that's also because I'm a pescatarian (don't eat land animals), so I don't think wearing something hairy is nice. I get the whole, but it's vintage thing, but I've just never liked it or even animal prints for that matter. Butttt, with leather I contradict myself. The 'new' leather I buy is in shoes. And then I have two leather bags, one made of vintage leather jackets and the other is vintage. I try my hardest not to buy new leather, but shoes that I want are almost always made of it! I was actually pondering this when I was watching Rachel Zoe's show and how she wears fur all the time. I once new someone that called himself a vegetarian. He never buys the meat, but if someone else buys it and they don't want it he eats it... I guess I'm kinda like that with leather.

allison said...

Thanks for your contribution! I can't argue with that reasoning. But um, I love that your friend will eat meat if it's free. I'm like that with almost anything.


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clarafier said...

i've been thinking of this a lot since peta just donated a bunch of fur coats to needy africans. which is good and all, except is there really a huge moral dilemma in wearing fur if it's all well and good for those in need to wear it? moreover, it's going to people who are probably herding sheep (a big no-no in peta's books). peta's obviously riddled with inconsistencies, but this really stood out to me.

i generally really hate the whole "freegan" philosophy, it seems so insubstantial. you won't support morally objectionable activities but you'll partake in them? if there's one thing worse than being so unprincipled, it's being so smugly cheap.

i honestly thing there's nothing inconsistent with loving animals and eating, hunting, and wearing them. it's all a matter of doing it in a sustainable way with respect to the life you're taking.