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3 Oct 2011

Your Opinions: Vintage Fur - Ok or not?

Here's just a short post from me but I really want your help and comments please! Let me start out by telling you all that I am against real fur in fashion - there are more humane ways of creating the same effect which is to an equal texture, colour, quality and standard these days.


Here's my dilemma - my grandmother gave me her vintage mink fur coat at the weekend. It's from the 70s and is very long (to under knee length) and has sleeves which are too short (probably longer than 3/4 length)


looks like this

Here's my questions:

1. What do I do? Is it still ethically wrong to wear a fur coat even though it's vintage? I haven't wanted to kill any animals but it would seem a waste if these all died in vain so a coat could lie in the back of a wardrobe, someone's dirty secret for years.

2. Further to that - the style it's in currently I couldn't wear. It's so old fashioned and although it fits nicely, I'd want it shorter and more trendy... or do I leave it as it is and hope one day they come back into fashion or hand it to my children?

What do you think?

p.s. interestingly, when researching for this post, the Daily Mail tells me that fake fur actually made using toxic processes and is non biodegradable compared the the "green" real fur process. Although I couldn't think of the poor animals being hurt in the unnecessary process which makes me feel a little sick. You can read their views on the fake vs real fur debate here.



  1. Vintage or not, you're still wearing dead animals. This is never OK with me.

  2. I know people will hate me, but I don't think its the end of the world.
    Do all of these people saying no to fur wear leather shoes??!
    I wouldn't buy fur, but if I was given vintage in this way I would keep it. If the coat can't be altered without ruining it, I would keep it until I was older and may prefer the style later.
    And yes fake fur is polyester/nylon which is plastic, made from oil, and not bio-degradable.

  3. I used to think Vintage fur was ok, but if you think about it it's still supporting the fur trade. The more people walk around wearing fur, the more accepted it becomes. Some fur farmers are actually labelling fur coats as "vintage" to make their stock seem less taboo, when in fact it's brand new fur. Most vintage shops stock fur, and don't bother to check whether it's really vintage. Vintage shops stocking fur send the message that fur is acceptable.

  4. Woah, I had no idea people were labelling it vintage when it's really not. I know my coat is vintage but you're right that it does make fur seem more acceptable if it wasn't "your fault" that the animals were killed.

    Great point but sad it's such an emotive topic that so many people have chosen to remain anonymous for their opinions because both sides are so extreme!


  5. I would tend to say what's done is done and the animals are already dead so vintage fur is OK. The problem with that is, as others have mentioned, that it makes wearing fur look more acceptable in general. There's also the issue of other things we use animals for: leather and food for example. Some would say if you're willing to eat meat (when there are suitable alternatives now) then fur is nothing different: it's all a luxury. Others would say eating meat is biologically natural but surely for cavemen, wearing fur was also.... Ah dear! I'm confusing myself! Personally if the fors and againsts are so numbered I'm arguing with myself, best to just not wear it and not make my brain explode!

  6. It's such a difficult topic isn't it; I'm vegetarian and would never buy real fur, but I also have a fur coat of my grandma's which I could never get rid of, simply because of the sentimentality behind it! xxx

  7. Oh wow I didn't know that either, vile!

    I couldn't wear fur whether it's vintage or not - animals have still been skinned for it.

    Although I can see Lauren's point about it not going to waste if the animal's already dead I just couldn't do it personally.

  8. I got one of my grandmothers fur collars in high school. It sat for years, but one day I realized it was meant to be worn! I have a few real and faux fur collars and accessories I wear in the winter. They do help me stay amazingly warm without large cover ups over my outfits!

  9. The animal has been dead for about 30+ years now and no, it's not your fault that it died. That being said...I would never buy fur new and think those who do are just wrong wrong wrong, but I have no problem wearing something used, it's not like letting it sit in the dusty attic, passing it by at the Goodwill or throwing it out is going to bring the animals life back. Vintage or not it's just another form of recycling.

  10. I think that you should definitely keep it. Nothing is as warm as real fur and it savea it going to landfill. If you feel really bad then cut out a steak as a sign of respect :) (just joking).

    I would take it to a furrier and have it restyled. It will be worth it.

    Good luck

  11. Hi, I would never condone the killing of animals in order to make new fur coats etc but I do not have a problem with vintage fur. I had this argument with a vegetarian man that i used to work with who was forever shoving pics in my face of tortured animals and battery hens etc telling me what i should eat and wear. He wore leather shoes! I accused him of being a hypocrite but he said the cow was killed for food so that was ok. I said to him how is it ok if you are also against eating meat? he couldn't give me a reasonable answer.
    I think that reusing and recycling anything has got to be good, including vintage fur.

  12. The wearing of fur is just plain wrong and the wearing of vintage fur just makes it seem OK to wear fur and fuels the horrendous trade.

    I don't wear any leather either as to me this is also an abhorrent practice

  13. I feel wearing vintage fur that was already sewn into clothing before we became aware of the cruelty issues is perfectly ok. We had nothing to do with it and it gives the animal certain purpose. Better to honor the poor animal by wearing its fur than to throw it wastefully into a landfull. There will always be meat eaters, and people will always want leather shoes. That is just the way it is. There are very toxic elements with some if not most of the manmade materials too. I am against animal cruelty in all respects so I would not wear soething made recently from a dead animal raised solely for that purpose. But leather can come from animals that were killed for food. Its the same thing as some people believing hunting is OK as long as the meat is used and not wasted.

  14. I constantly have this dilemma as I recently bought a vintage fur coat, but now I sometimes feel guilty about wearing it. When I wear it I often feel like I'm getting bad looks like I'm a bad person. I never thought I'd wear fur, and I love all animals and I'd hate the thought of an animal being killed just so I can be warm...but then I think, well, this animal was killed before I was even born and if I didn't wear it's fur then it should just go to waste! So, I think vintage fur is ok because it's a form of recycling. I mean, when I die or when I don't like my fur anymore, it will probably go to somebody else and keep them warm, and that's not so bad, is it?

  15. There seems to be this idea that because its vintage, the animal roamed around lavish fields before it was humanely killed in its old age. This is not true at all. Vintage fur was just as bad with people killing them in the same way and not bothering to look after the animals. Also think about how many minks were killed for that coat, possibly 50? By encouraging the use of real fur then you are keeping it in fashion and thus helping the horrendous animal farms that work today. To say that "it keeps me warm" is awful and so selfish. Animals are often skinned whilst their alive and then just left to bleed to death. They are also kept in tiny cages where they chew off their legs and arms trying to escape. It is barbaric and so horrendous.Please get rid of this coat, sell it and donate the money to your favourite charity. Faux fur is just as warm and looks just as nice. Please check out my blog post about it - http://www.jennafifi.com/2011/05/my-relationship-with-fur.html READ THE FACTS BEFORE YOU MAKE A CHOICE.

  16. most views have been covered, but i just thought i'd throw in the main counter argument to the whole, we wear leather and eat meat so its fine thing.. the difference is the yield.
    one cow hide's worth of leather is around 7 square feet, a decent amount, and the meat then goes to food as well.
    a mink coat needs between 50 and 80 minks for that one coat. so a long one like yours would definitely be up there around the 80 mark. so thats 80 animals killed for a yield of 1 coat compared to a 2 or 3 jackets per cow


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