Fur is Back in Fashion with a Vengeance

Fur is Back in Fashion with a Vengeance: Will You Embrace It?

by Nora Crotty


Two Tone Brown and Black Mink Coat Puffed Collar exclusively from Marc Kaufman Furs’ collection

Supporters call it “natural” and “sustainable.” Opposers say it’s cruel and inhumane. But whichever side you fall on, there’s no denying that fur had a major presence on the fall 2013 runways this past month, being hailed as one of the biggest trends for next season.

Striped, dyed, embossed, and manipulated, the sheer amount of real animal fur we saw this fashion month was more overwhelming than we remembered from seasons past. We scoured through every single photo of every single collection that walked this season and found that a startling 70% of the designers who showed during fashion month used fur in at least one look. Several collections, including those by Altuzarra, Marc Jacobs, and Louis Vuitton, incorporated fur into over 20 looks. Others still, like J.Mendel, Marni, and Giambattista Valli, used fur in more than 30.

And then there was Fendi. Karl Lagerfeld apparently had some fuzzy vision happening while designing the Italian label’s fall line: Every single look from the 40+ piece collection featured multiple instances of fur usage, including (but certainly not limited to) coats, handbags, sunglasses, shoes, and even mohawk-esque hair pieces made of dyed fox. Needless to say, there were zero PETA pie-ings reported.

So is it safe to say that fur has finally fallen back into favor? Wearing fur has always been a hot button issue. Once considered the most regal and luxurious of materials, the animal rights movement first brought attention to the alleged wrongdoings of the fur trade in the late 1970s. In that same vein, the Internet age has beckoned an onslaught of viral anti-fur videos showing the horrific living (and dying) conditions of innocent animals skinned alive for their pelts–inspiring a new generation to think anti-fur. Veganism, more prevalent than ever amongst health-freaks and animals lovers alike (see: Anne Hathaway), promotes a lifestyle completely devoid of eating–or wearing–anything that once had a face. Not to mention the city of West Hollywood, California’s historic ban on the selling of fur products, slated to go into effect this September.

According to Keith Kaplan, executive director of the Fur Information Council of America, the case against fur is due mostly to a lack of education–and the fashion world is at the forefront of changing those misconceptions. “Designers have done their homework,” he told us via email. “They have come to recognize that the fur industry is committed to the humane and responsible treatment of animals and that no industry is more highly regulated at local, national, and international levels.”

Dyed Green Silver Fox Fur Vest, exclusively from Marc Kaufman Furs in NYC

Kaplan went on to describe fur as an eco-friendly option, calling it a “natural, renewable, biodegradable resource”–and thus a smarter choice than synthetic fur, which he says is petroleum-based, non-renewable, and manufactured in such a manner that “releases harmful chemicals into the atmosphere.”

Furthermore, “fur has a unique and unparalleled richness and texture that even the best of faux cannot replicate,” says Kaplan–which may explain why Marc Jacobs chose to show almost cartoon-like, stuffed animal-looking stoles for fall, made of very real animal fur.

Of course Vogue editor in chief Anna Wintour has made no secret of her penchant for the real stuff and is often credited with introducing it back into fashion. Countless verbal and physical attacks from anti-fur protesters (including a raccoon carcass-bombing during dinner) haven’t dissuaded the first lady of fashion from using it in her editorials since she began her rein in the late ’80s.

But were the fall runways a sign of the fashion industry going green, or something more sinister? PETA‘s Danielle Katz told us that fur-friendly designers, such as Karl Lagerfeld, “use dead animals for shock value” and that, as far as the general public is concerned, “fur remains as popular as a cold sore.”

Katz could be on the right track about the latter. After all, it was our shock at the prevalence of fur at shows like Lagerfeld’s Fendi that lead us to investigate fur’s current social standing in the first place. As for the public’s opinion, is the general populace really looking for a tube of Abreva big enough to wipe out the fur industry–or is the fashion industry simply responding to society’s fever for fur?

We consulted data polling site Gallup.com for the cold, hard, fur facts. Gallup’s most recent survey on the subject, conducted in May 2012, asked participants whether they considered wearing fur morally acceptable. Of the 1024 people included, a resounding 60% saw fur as morally acceptable–a 4% increase from the same poll taken one year earlier. However, in 2012, only 35% believed fur to be morally wrong–a 4% decrease from the 39% who were totally anti-fur in 2011.

Dyed Blue Silver Fox exclusively from Marc Kaufman Furs in NYC

There are of course, as with any poll, various factors at play here, including the age, education, and income of the participants. But if these numbers say anything, it’s that fur’s approval rating has only increased in the past year–and the fashion industry, per usual, is totally in tune.

But what say you? Will you be clamoring for real-fur everything next season and turn your cheek at your house pets’ third cousins, or would you rather save the animals but potentially upset Mother Nature in doing so? Can there ever be a middle-ground when it comes to fur in fashion? We want to hear what you think.

Two Tone Brown and Black Mink Coat exclusively from Marc Kaufman Furs

Marc Kaufman Furs NYC NY 10001 212 563 3877

https://www.facebook.com/pages/Marc-Kaufman-Furs

@marckaufmanfurs

E-mail: kaufmanfurs@aol.com

www.kaufmanfurs.com

 

Red Fox Fur Stroller with Belt & Hood, exclusively from Marc Kaufman Furs in NYC

Marc Kaufman Furs in New York City, NY ships your fur purchases and rentals to wherever you may be: Chicago, Illinois, Detroit, Michigan, Buffalo, New York, San Francisco, Los Angeles, California, Minnesota, Seattle, Washington, Philadelphia, Taos, New Mexico, Pennsylvania, Atlanta, Georgia, Portland, Oregon, Park City, Utah, Idaho, Vermont, Maine, New Hampshire, Wyoming, Montana, Aspen, Colorado, Missouri, Anchorage, Alaska, Moscow, Russia, London, UK, England, Seoul, South Korea, Geneva, Gstaad, Lausanne, Zurich, Switzerland, Germany, Paris, Chamonix, France, Austria, Italy, Dubai, UAE, Hong Kong, Beijing, Shanghai, China, Tokyo, Osaka, Japan, Toronto, Whistler, British Columbia, Quebec, Canada, Helsinki, Finland, Stockholm, Sweden, Copenhagen, Oslo, Norway, Melbourne, Sydney, Australia, Amsterdam, The Netherlands, Singapore; to all 50 States, and just about anywhere else in the World! With over 2000 quality furs to choose from, and the option to design your own, Marc Kaufman Furs of NYC has the most extensive online fur selection in the World.

 

New York City Fashion Week: designer furs stroll catwalk

New York Fashion Week: Luxe fabric, designs and fur stroll catwalk

By Suzanne S. Brown
The Denver Post

Dennis Basso’s chartreuse chinchilla jacket with gold lace gown. (Frazer Harrison, Getty Images)

NEW YORK  — One of the first things to know about Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week is that the looks on display, for the most part, aren’t the type of clothes most women — or men — wear. They’re expensive brands carried by high-end retailers and, in many cases, at the designer’s own stand-alone stores.

Customers for the looks don’t balk at spending $1,000 for a dress or handbag and that’s often on the low end. And, yes, there is a market for this type of clothing or these folks wouldn’t stay in business. Even if you’ll never desire — or be able to afford — the labels, there’s often a kernel of the idea in what they’re showing that will filter down to the mass market. In recent season, that has been

KaufmanFranco’s leather biker look. (Richard Drew, Associated Press)

peplums, lace, quilted effects and loads of leather.One of the main things separating the luxury brands from the rest of the fashion world are the fabrics — which is why there is such a profusion of rich silk, satin, suede, leather and fur on view. Carolina Herrera piled on pelts in her show on Monday, outlining the back of an emerald green gown with fox, and put a mink hem on the bottom of a full-length dress. “These are clothes you get out of a limo wearing,” observed one fashion editor. Heaven forbid your mink hem would touch a city street.

Donna Karan likes her skins, but took them in a novel direction, using curly and long-haired shearling as well as a lot of leather, often paired with stretch viscose jersey. Her first solo collection 30 years ago was built on the idea of “seven easy pieces” of body-conscious clothing that could be combined in many ways to create outfits, and she said she was continuing to build on that idea in her fall-winter line.

Layered over a black bodysuit and pants, for example, were a viscose and

Badgley Mischka’s jersey and brocade gown. (Frazer Harrison, Getty Images)

neoprene jersey cape, or a tweed skirt. Her sculptural, pieced dresses in rust-colored silk and jersey often had the graceful and dramatic flourish of a silky cape that wafted behind as the model walked up and down the aisles at Cedar Lake Studios.”These are clothes for women like me — who live and work 24/7 with passion and dress with emotion,” Karan said in her program notes. That category must include women like Uma Thurman, Gretchen Mol and Bernadette Peters, who were in the front row.

Good-girl, bad-girl looks

The design team of Ken Kaufman and Isaac Franco showed a collection full of edgy, sexy looks. The notes accompanying their show was a series of adjectives rather than a statement. They are emphasizing

Carolina Herrera’s fox-trimmed evening dress. (Bebeto Matthews, Associated Press)

“raw, refined; good girl, bad girl; simple, complex.”Yes, opposites attract. Their KaufmanFranco biker and moto-inspired pieces included fitted jackets, skinny pants with knee pads and bombers. Zippers were on everything — up the back of skirts, down the sides of jackets, and even outlining the deep V-plunge at the back of an evening gown.

The theme carried over to their beaded pieces, which took on a tough-girl edge with fish-scale embroidery on a shift and a coat that had “sequin shatters” that looked like metallic ribbons hanging from it. The color palette was muted: lots of black, gray, and “martini olive” green. Like many of

Reem Acra’s hand embroidered column gown. (Frazer Harrison, Getty Images)

the designers showing here, the pair used a lot of fur — mink sleeves on a glazed wool bomber, silver fox and mink on a biker jacket, a zip front vest in mink and fox.Adding to the hard-edge mood were over-the-knee stretch leather boots by Manolo Blahnik. The models had dark, smudged eye makeup designed by by Gucci Westman for Revlon and their hair had a full, untamed look.

Japan-inspired style

A recent trip to Japan fired up Reem Acra’s creative cylinders for a slick, mostly black collection punctuated by red embroidery, fishnet overlays and black fur trim. Models with scarlet lips and slicked-back chignons amped up the collection’s

Donna Karan’s sculptural, pieced dress of silk and jersey. (Carlo Allegri, Reuters)

Eastern mood.Acra’s show may not spark any new trends but some of the individual designs were stunning, such as a black and white color-blocked column gown with jet-beaded vines snaking down the sides. It would be perfect for Oscar night.

The evening creations at Badgley Mischka are always strong, and this season was no exception, especially a duo of slender black columns with shimmery Art Deco motifs.

The surprise of the show by designers Mark Badgley and James Mischka was the day wear that looked chic without being uptight. The slate gray and black blanket plaid jacket with a face-framing collar belted over a simple cashmere sweater and knit skirt looked appealing in a downtown-meets-uptown way. Beaded twinsets with metallic tweed or damask skirts were both casual and elegant for evening.

Whether he’s holding court in his Manhattan headquarters or boutiques in Aspen, Vail or overseas, Dennis Basso has a way of wowing with his designs in fur and fabric. Basso celebrates 30 years in business in 2013 and made it clear he isn’t resting on his fashion laurels in the show he presented Tuesday.

Basso used a lot of color and exotic combinations in the collection, including alligator in slate blue mixed with sable for one jacket, and green sable, alligator and broadtail highlighting a coat. A nice bonus of the line was that the evening dresses accompanying the furs were lovely, particularly the beaded “plaid” designs.

Slate-colored Rabbit Fur Vest with Fox Fur Collar

Since 1910 the Marc Kaufman Fur Family has been manufacturing fur coats and fur jackets in NYC, designing luxury furs, repairing luxury furs and altering along with providing cold fur storage and fur cleaning for fur stores and individuals. With over 100 years of fur expertise “Marc Kaufman Furs is A Name You Can Trust for All your Fur Needs“.

Get the celebrity look

Look like a celebrity in this Tortoise Shell Hooded Mink Stroller from Marc Kaufman Furs’ collection

Marc Kaufman Furs NYC NY 10001 212 563 3877

https://www.facebook.com/pages/Marc-Kaufman-Furs

@marckaufmanfurs

E-mail: kaufmanfurs@aol.com

www.kaufmanfurs.com

Red Fox Fur Stroller with Belt & Hood, exclusively from Marc Kaufman Furs in NYC

Marc Kaufman Furs in New York City, NY ships your fur purchases and rentals to wherever you may be: Chicago, Illinois, Detroit, Michigan, Buffalo, New York, San Francisco, Los Angeles, California, Minnesota, Seattle, Washington, Philadelphia, Taos, New Mexico, Pennsylvania, Atlanta, Georgia, Portland, Oregon, Park City, Utah, Idaho, Vermont, Maine, New Hampshire, Wyoming, Montana, Aspen, Colorado, Missouri, Anchorage, Alaska, Moscow, Russia, London, UK, England, Seoul, South Korea, Geneva, Gstaad, Lausanne, Zurich, Switzerland, Germany, Paris, Chamonix, France, Austria, Italy, Dubai, UAE, Hong Kong, Beijing, Shanghai, China, Tokyo, Osaka, Japan, Toronto, Whistler, British Columbia, Quebec, Canada, Helsinki, Finland, Stockholm, Sweden, Copenhagen, Oslo, Norway, Melbourne, Sydney, Australia, Amsterdam, The Netherlands, Singapore; to all 50 States, and just about anywhere else in the World! With over 2000 quality furs to choose from, and the option to design your own, Marc Kaufman Furs of NYC has the most extensive online fur selection in the World.