Most women wouldn’t dream of buying a fur coat. And why would you, when fake is so fab?

I own a divine bottle- green vintage wool coat picked up for a pittance at a Mt Lawley second-hand shop. Whenever I wear it, I delight in wondering about its history and the fabulous pin- curled lady who might have once worn it. But the part of its history I prefer not to think about is the poor unsuspecting animal that once wore the fur that makes up its luxurious collar. I’m not even sure what type of creature it came from. A fox? A mink?

When I wore it to a wedding in Scotland I half-feared (and half-deserved) a PETA paint attack (luckily it didn’t happen since a Chanel-clad Kylie Minogue was standing behind me and could have copped collateral Dulux damage).

Still, I tell myself, wearing vintage fur is nowhere near as contemptible as buying contemporary fur. For a start, I’m not funding an ethically questionable industry that proliferates in parts of the world with little or no regard for animal welfare.

But by wearing it, I’m perpetuating the appeal and currency of fur. But the big fashion houses keep doing that, anyway. The international autumn/winter 2015 shows had more fur than Les Gold’s pawn shop, and whether I wear my little mothball-scented collar or not won’t stop them.

But the fur item in my wardrobe that gets even more wear than the guilt-inducing green one is a fluffy black number made, not from a panther, but the common polyester. Faux fur is fashion forward, friends, and it’s flying off the racks.

UK-based fake fur company Shrimps does some wonderful jackets. And in Australia companies such as Unreal Fur offer a huge selection of fake fur finery. Most of the big fashion houses have faux fur pieces this season: everything from coats and jackets to gilets, scarves, bags and even booties.

Authenticity might be important in fashion but when it comes to fur, you’ve got to fake it to make it. 


© The West Australian

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