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Can I Wear a Vintage Fur?

  • February 23, 2021

Since then, I have inherited a fur coat, a mink that my grandmother, who left school at 15, dreamed about, scrimped and saved for over decades, and that became part of her American dream. While I can’t part with it, I can’t bring myself to wear it.

I’ve even considered stitching a giant “vintage” patch on the back of the coat. Maybe there’s a business opportunity for an enterprising soul in creating a certification process, including logo, for used furs, but it hasn’t happened yet.

What has happened, however, is the rise of a new kind of business — in not just restyling (that’s been around for a while), but entirely repurposing old furs. That means transforming coats into blankets, pillows, hats, scarves and even zip-out linings so as to preserve their meaning without promoting their creation. Many small storefronts have sprung up on Etsy to address the issue, as well as companies with names like Muffle Up and Further.

Admittedly, the solution is better than the wordplay.

Every week on Open Thread, Vanessa will answer a reader’s fashion-related question, which you can send to her anytime via email or Twitter. Questions are edited and condensed.

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