Thursday, September 22, 2011

Faux Fur Mania 2011

Feeling The Chill

As Fall begins to creep in, the mornings are a bit cooler and days are shorter, signaling the coming of the changing season. I love this time of year....colors of vivid rust, orange, yellows and burgundy are everywhere.

Fall fashion also is my favorite clothing choice. The colors are warmer, richer and so diverse.

Blending shades of fall is also enjoyable for me and goes perfectly with my warm tea by the fire. They just make me feel comfy, safe, and the fall shades definitely improve my complexion color. What it also signals, is it will be time to bundle up and change our wardrobe. I am always on the lookout for something new and different to add as an accessory to my already bursting Fall wardrobe.

Fur fashion has been the rage for as long as I can remember and still continues today in all its glory. So many beautiful colors and textures to choose from, and a touch of fur gives that outfit that ultimate panache. But the fur fashion landscape has truly changed for the better in recent years....especially as recently as December 2010.....explained below.

Go Faux Fur

Although real fur fashion has been going strong in some countries and still is in the United States to a degree, real fur is no longer necessary unless it is to show the affluence of the person wearing it.

Faux fur has made huge strides in perfecting the realism of natural fur. Styling and beauty along with the technology of creating fabulous fibers simulating real fur, is truly remarkable.

When I find a fur coat or something or other in faux, I stop and check it out, and if the style is right, I buy it. I could sit and stroke my faux fur jacket or collar for hours. This is also why I love our mineral makeup brushes so much, the faux fur in them is incredibly soft and feels fabulous on the skin.

Trendy Styles Of Faux Fur Fashion Of 2011

The different styles of fashion you can play around with for 2011 have grown beyond boring to fun and flirty. I am actually giddy with anticipation of owning more of these garments flocked in faux fur.

You can spice up an outfit with a fuzzy hat, or you can take a simple low cut shirt and glam it up with a furry scarf, which also gives warmth and can hide some of that imperfect skin we seem to always get as we age. We don't always have to drape our necks in turtleneck sweaters.

Aside from Faux Fur Jackets, the fur vests are really hot this year. I saw some beauties just the other night on HSN. She offered a wide variety of colors and textures and they were sure to fool even the most savvy fur connoisseur. Layering an outfit with a gorgeous fur vest can be truly beautiful and trendy. Plus, some of them are so wickedly cool, I may have to stock up.

And of course, where would we be without our beloved accessories. You can get faux fur slippers, purses, mittens or gloves, including but never limited to faux fur flocked boots. I own a pair of these cushy warm they are.

If you aren't into all that fur stuff, then you can buy jackets or coats with just a touch of fur around the collar and / or on the cuffs.

Even faux Suede is the rage as well, and if you check the garment label, some of these are even washable. How cool is that?

Donna Salyer's Fabulous Furs has every faux fur imaginable which includes beautiful vests, coats, hats, scarves, gloves, purses, you name it, they seem to have it. You can even shop by Faux Fur type of animal you choose....coyote, sable, mink, lynx, etc. They have truly captured the essence of the real fur but without the expense or the cruelty. Check them out!

Real Fur Is Not Cool Anymore!

Many, many moons ago, I even owned a real full length fur coat in Mink and since then I have come to understand what the fur industry really stood for and it was about cruelty, greed, and ambivalence or indifference to the animals they destroyed to make these fur fashions.

With today's technology, the faux fur industry has really provided some products that could pass as the real thing in feel, looks and color. Some say the drawback with fake fur, they are not near as warm as the real thing, but hey, layer with other clothing items, I say. Also, some manufacturers are lining them in fabric that will enhance the warmth instead of using a satin liner. Personally I have been quite happy with my faux fur jackets, hats and coats. I keep plenty warm, and they are lined with material that is cozy and comfy.

Caution: Telling The Difference Between Fake Fur and Real Fur

Now for the caveat; fake fur, especially coming out of China and parts of the Ukraine, have a declaration of faux fur on the label, yet this does not clarify what or how it is produced. Unfortunately, the definition of fake fur for these countries are to farm and kill the fantastically beautiful raccoon dog, or worse yet, the household cat or dog.

Since technology has made faux furs almost impossible to tell the difference anymore, unless you are a trained furrier, simply looking at them or touching them will reveal very little to knowing for sure. They can be dyed and sewed similar to the real thing.

BURN TEST: There is a test you can conduct to make sure you are not buying or supporting the destruction of animals under a false labeling claim. Of course you won't be able to do this in the store, but if you take the garment home, you can conduct a burn test.

In general, natural fibers burn and synthetic fibers melt. Cut or pluck a few hairs off of the garment. Using a lighter or a match, try to burn the ends of the hair. If the tip of the hair burns, crumbles away when you touch it and smells like human hair burning, it is real fur. If the tip of the hair melts, curls up into a hard ball and smells like an unnatural chemical, the fur is synthetic.

If you discover it is still real animal hair, return it to the store and make your disdain known to the store manager, not the sales staff. If we educate the store of where we purchased the garment, this could exert pressure on them to be more careful and no longer buy from these sources that are providing mislabeled items or practicing deceit by simply calling dog hair, faux fur.

Last time I checked, I am pretty sure a cat or dog considers what they wear as fur for keeping them warm. So let's keep the fur on the animals where it belongs.

Truth In Labeling Law

Fortunately, the problem may have been solved to a large degree. A new law was signed by President Obama on December 18th 2010, requiring all products containing real fur to be labeled as such. Previously, the fur labeling law contained a loophole that exempted products if the value of the fur was under $150, leaving consumers in the dark about the real fur in their gloves, hats and fur-trimmed coats.

So instead of seeing "faux fur" on the label, it will now be described as "acrylic" or other synthetic fiber (type of polymer) utilized in the creation of the garment and it will be ascribed to the location on the jacket.

This new law also helps protect vegans who cherish a lifestyle, and want to be sure they are not contributing to the destruction of animals. I am so thrilled with this new law. But then again, I have always been about truth in labeling as in the case of cosmetics and skincare products.

SHARE THE LOVE: Also if you currently own a fur coat and you really don't enjoy wearing it anymore, but also don't want to pass it along for another to wear due to how you may feel about the fur industry, the Humane Society of the United States offers an outlet for donation of discarded furs. They use them in their "Coats For Cubs" program. The donated coat becomes a furry surrogate for orphaned wildlife that has been rescued. It is a cause I support(ed) with my own mink coat 6 years ago. Clicking on the program link above, will tell you how you can also donate your coat in full detail. I think it is a fantastic way to give back to the animals we once regarded as fur for fashion.

Faux Fur Fun

Even if wearing fur is not your thing, then beautiful faux fur blankets are also available, keeping you warm and fuzzy during those cold fall and winter nights on the couch, sipping hot cocoa or enjoying a libation of sorts. Or put a splash of designer faux fur in your favorite room with a fashionable throw pillow.

So, next time you're out shopping, check out the latest faux fur trends and see if adding a furry piece to your wardrobe or to your decor, doesn't give you that extra pizzazz you were looking for.

Caution: watch out for faux fur overload!

Happy Shopping!

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