During my first winter in Germany after 27 years I noticed every day how many people are wearing fur and fake fur, especially in the form of collars. A lot of people may think that they are wearing fake fur when indeed they are not. Fake fur is often more expensive than real fur or cat and other animal’s hair, which is sold as fake fur since the sellers know that consumers don’t want to wear real fur.
A few years ago I let go of the one item that was made with fake fur and I also took out all clothes and items with animal prints. I understand that some people wear animal prints because they love leopards and tigers and snakes and feel connected to them in that way but I decided to follow Paul McCartney’s and PETA’s lead and be done with showing patterned animal skin around my body or in home decor. Fur and animal prints are just as much part of the animal as leather. I have a few leather items in my possession, one belt, one wallet, a couple of purses, and five pairs of shoes, even two fake leather jackets. They are part of my using them up category. Using leather when it is a by-product of the meat industry feels better than wasting it. One of my purses is from such a source, in addition to being fair trade, and having organic coloring. For me eliminating fur, downs, carpets and clothing made of animal hair are small steps. From a design perspective fur collars often overpower people’s hair and heads, making the hair look less than it is and the head smaller. I am also surprised to see so many men wearing fur collars, which create a high contrast to their heads and short or balding hair, accentuating those. The dyes of real and fake fur are also creating often harsh and unnatural contrast levels to people’s pigmentation. I am looking forward to Spring and soon people will put their winter coats away.