Do you deny the new £5 note and ask for coins instead? Do you stand when offered a seat on a leather couch? Do you carry all your shopping by hand rather than using plastic bags? No, you don’t. So what’s the problem with wearing real fur?
Don’t get me wrong, I’m human. Of course it would make me distressed and unhappy – tearful even – to see animals being treated inhumanely. But that doesn’t and won’t stop me from wearing real fur. I don’t agree with the mistreatment of animals. I only buy free range eggs and will consciously buy organic meat (where my student budget allows me to). I recycle. I am mindful of my carbon footprint. But humans have eaten meat and used animal by products since the beginning of time. So why would we stop doing that now? It’s not barbaric, it’s real life.
The Gucci blanket ban on all real fur will have little effect on the number of animals affected by the production of fashion. Gucci are playing off this stunt as a good deed; saving the environment and saving the animals. It’s not really though, is it?
The brand is opening its golden gates to the anti-fur warriors that throw paint at the fashion show’s front row. And however you feel about fur, being a supporter of Gucci now comes with the superficial ethical badge – the insignia to sew on your faux. The brand is building a larger fan base and cultivating good will. But they’re not fooling me.
If the plan is to promote the Gucci’s reputation as a company with squeaky-clean morals they must draw attention to the full picture, rather than painting one that suits the frame. Recyclable packaging, minimising air miles involved in shoots for campaigns, minimising pollution created from manufacturing warehouses, in-sourcing in the manufacturing process, sourcing your materials locally, avoiding treating fabrics with harmful chemicals. Not to mention the intensely harmful impact on the environment demanded by faux-fur. If you want to buy clothes that have been ethically produced, wearing those iconic green and red stripes isn’t the place to start.
Perhaps I feel this way because of the way I have been raised; my dad worked in a butchers as a teenager, my mother an owner of countless fur coats and leather shoes and handbags. From a young age I have been obsessed by vintage furs. My great aunt would show me her mink coats, muskrat hats, fox shawls and even a seal muff and I would swoon. Perhaps it’s my base instinct. And it should be yours too. After all when you’re watching Blue Planet II, naturally you sympathise with the prey – constantly running away and hiding in fear of its predator. But when you see the majestic polar bear, who hasn’t eaten in weeks, trying to feed her baby cubs by hunting a walrus’ young, you begin to question who it is you’re rooting for in this race. Hunting is a natural part of life on this earth. So long as it is a carried out in the most humane and ethical way possible – I am all for it. And you should be too. So just put on your fur coat and WORK IT SISTER.