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I am no Cruella de Vil, you hippie!

February 19, 2010

On my way home from yoga the other day in East Village, bundled up in my Calvin Klein coat and $10 Russian fur hat (it is the most incredibly warm, best thing that’s ever happened to me), I was totally called out by a group of hippies. I was so stunned by their outburst I didn’t respond, so this post is my passive aggressive reply. They were holding signs about animal cruelty and yelled something along the lines of, “Hey, you! Keep wearing that fur and keep promoting the needless death of thousands of animals! Oh, go ahead! Keep walking!” They were terrifying. I am just thankful they didn’t throw blood on me. But here’s the thing. This fur …

… is obviously fake. But, I regret to admit that my faux fur wardrobe isn’t entirely morally sound. OK, so I cry every time I watch “101 Dalmatians” babysitting, and I love animals. And I am ethically against the idea of hurting animals just so some Kim-Kardashian-type can stay warm. It is not cool. Not cool. Right?

But I, just, ugh. Let’s allow Phoebe Buffay from “Friends” to explain this for me:

When I see an older woman strutting down the sidewalk with her full-length fur coat, much like the one Pheobe wears, it is just breath-taking. I hate to admit it. But it’s like eating the best burger you’ve ever had in your life — it’s just so good. That woman owns the sidewalk in that coat. These women pop up every now and then on Madison Avenue in the city, and it’s impossible to look away.

Will I ever invest in real fur once I get some savings built up? With price, morals and fur substitutes considered, is it worth it?

Let’s compare:

Full Length Fur Mink Coat, $5,395 (!)

Lynx Fur Vest, $2,989.95

Morals aside, that fur vest is fierce. I will never be able to deny that real fur is enviably gorgeous, and warmer than anything faux fur can come up with. But the conclusion I’ve reached is A) I would never be able to afford any of it and B) I could never let go of the guilt of wearing real fur. Adequate warmth is provided by so many other materials and you can still look (almost) as fierce with something a little more ethical, like these:

Target, $59, Long Wool Jacket with Faux Fur

Target, $59, Black Women's Faux Fur Collar Cape

… And tons more. So, if you suffer from the same guilt-pleasure fur complex as Phoebe and I, go watch “101 Dalmatians,” remember how much you can buy with $5,000 and go faux. Just know that either way, you still risk the chance of being bitched at by protesters.

2 Comments leave one →
  1. February 19, 2010 6:25 pm

    You know I’m with you on the ethical implications, but damn does real fur look classy. Maybe one day I’ll be able to afford a decent-looking fake fur. I really just don’t think I could wear real fur. I wish I lived in New York in the ’40s.

  2. February 20, 2010 11:19 pm

    I used to own the sweetest white rabbit fur coat when I was little. I felt like the most stylin’ five-year-old every time I wore it. I may rummage through my mom’s house to see if I can still find a way to wear it now like a cropped jacket — the memory of the coat is just that awesome.

    I am with you on the ethical issues — I would feel horrible buying a new full-length fur coat. I do, however, think I could be swayed to go for vintage furs — I feel a little less bad if the animal’s been dead for more than 30 years.

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