Pamela Paquin only uses real fur in her purses, leg warmers, hats and neck muffs, but she sources the "accidental fur" — her name for it — from animals that die from natural causes like accidents.
"All this fur is being thrown away," Paquin told WCVB Boston of the reasoning behind it. "If we can pick that up, we never have to kill another fur-bearing animal again."
Pieces from two-year-old company Petite Mort Fur — "little death" in French — sell on Etsy and in a market on Boston's Newbury Street. The pieces aren't cheap, ranging from $800 to $1,400 or more, even if she did "find" the raccoon, fox, coyote and alpaca furs instead of purchasing them from a pelt dealer.
But while her customers like the idea of wearing "accidental fur," animal advocacy groups aren't so excited.
"A business that promotes wearing real fur as fashionable and acceptable may well create more demand for fur from all sources, and could give all fur wearers a shield from legitimate criticism," Virginia Fuller of the Boston-area Citizens to End Animal Suffering and Exploitation, or CEASE, told WCVB.
However, Paquin is providing an alternative to traditional fur, which is still a multibillion-dollar industry worldwide.
"Clearly advocacy had failed," Paquin told the news station. "Alternatives must be found. Making use of animals that would otherwise be thrown away is sensible."
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