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Furs and Christmas Shopping


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Well, we just went Christmas an hour ago and we wore our furs.


It has been snowing all day and it's around 26 F. It was like a picture post card. We have arpund 5 inches on the ground now.


My wife wore her F/L Hooded Coyote and Shadow Fox coat. I wore my Arctic Wolf jacket.


WOW!!! We had people stopping us and asking if the furs were real and asking if they could touch them. One lady just reached right out as she was talking with us and started stroking my sleeve. Some others wanted to know all about my wife's coat.


They were amazed that we got them so inexpensively on Ebay.


Others (abt. 12 people) remarked how warm we look and how beautiful the furs were.....it was just plain awesome!!!


So wear your furs folks!!! You may be glad you did.



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I've been away for awhile myself doing a work contract. At night went to a couple of shopping centers wearing full length spotted white fox.


This is just one experience.

Went into the store. Two women immediately mentioned the beautiful coat I was carrying and mentioned how nice it must be for me wearing it. I told them it was indeed. They were feeling the fur, and asking the kind of fur it was, etc. Then, they told me they wanted me to model it so I indeed did, putting it on, and buttoning it up, putting up the hood, etc. All the while them admiring the coat. In fact, kept it on for the next ten minutes or so in the mall until it got too hot again.


And like I said, that is just one experience of a number of them!



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Some news from the fur front:


I was in Chicago over the weekend. Some observations:


(1) Fur was everywhere -- On the streets and in the stores. On the streets not only did I see ladies sporting mink coats and fox jackets even though it was relatively warm out ... But I also saw a ton of fur trim -- On hoods, collars, cuffs ... Even trimming the bottoms of coats. In the stores I saw fur scarves, fur vests, fur lined coats, and shearling coats -- And that was just for the men!


(2) I visited three furriers while I was there. I tried on roughly two dozen men's furs -- Including red fox, black fox, ranch mink, mahogany mink, blue iris mink, fisher, and beaver coats and jackets. Everyone was having half off sales (from ridiculous regular prices) ... But most pieces still seemed on the high side. My favorite pieces were the minks ... Some of the pieces were very high quality and so full the texture was almost like a plush velvet.


(3) As always, buyer beware. While I was in one of the furriers, a gentleman came in, looked around, and within 10 minutes bought a men's full length ranch mink coat. I had looked at the coat previously and was not impressed -- It was priced at ~$11,000 and he got it for ~$5,000 (less than half the listed price) -- Which would have been a decent deal for Chicago retail if the coat had been good quality. Unfortunately, that was not the case. It was black dyed male pelt ranch mink and to the discerning eye it screamed "Cheap". I had been quoted a price of ~$6,500 for an incredible ranch mink coat at the store minutes before and I was somewhat surprised and definitely disappointed that they did not direct the gentleman to the higher quality coat (even though it was about 30% more expensive it was 100% nicer than the coat he was buying) -- Even if he didn't feel he could afford the nicer coat I think he should have been made aware of the varying quality of mink coats so that he made an informed decision.


(4) In terms of furs on the street, most of the coats were nice but one stood out -- I caught sight of it as the lady wearing it was exiting the Chanel boutique at Neiman's -- An incredible almost floor length hooded golden sable coat. It was the kind of coat you would have Dennis Basso make for you after you won Powerball. It was drizzling outside and when I saw her exit the store without an umbrella I had to restrain myself from yelling "NO!" and running after her offering the cover of my umbrella.


(5) I wore my ranch mink coat on Saturday and received several compliments ... But Sunday it was too damp out in my estimation and so switched to cloth. I was amazed at the number of women out Sunday in furs with no umbrellas (including Miz Golden Sable).


(6) The second biggest surprise of the day (Miz Sable ranked first) was a ranch mink coat I saw at one of the furriers -- It was regular priced at over $23,000, yet sported a "Made in China" tag. I was shocked. I know a lot of designers outsource their production to China, India, Singapore, etc., to save on labor costs ... But this was the first time I have seen an expensive fur coat that was made somewhere besides North America or Europe. I'm sure it's simply my prejudice ... But when I saw the "China" tag sewn into the coat its' desirability and worth dropped considerably in my estimation.


(7) One of the most incredible furs I saw was in the window of J. Mendel -- A fabulous brown mink coat. I'm not clear what type it was (my color issues kicking in again) -- But it was a spectacular mahogany or lunaraine or whatever mink coat. The most unusual furs I saw were in Dennis Basso -- Unusual designs, fur trims, etc.


(8) Probably the most unusual fur I tried on was a Blackglama coat with a silver fox collar. I own a beautiful silver fox coat ... But the over-sized silver fox collar against the deep and rich Blackglama color of this coat was too spectacular and over-the-top for my sensibility. I definitely felt like Joe Pimp in that coat.

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Great report, JG! Thanks! I didn't get to make it out to much shopping this weekend, but I did go out and about in my mink, and my wife in one of hers.


Hopefully the gentleman who bought his coat is satisfied with it! At least he got one!


You know, you could have offered to walk with Ms. Sable with your umbrella! What a great way to start up a conversation! I know what you mean--I always cringe when my wife wears fur in the rain. She's gotten some water on it, but it's never been soaked.


As for Made in China...I feel the exact same way as you. I was in a Macy*s Fur Vault, and most of the pieces I saw there were made in china. What's crazy, though, is that more coats than we think come from China. Recently, I was checking out a garment that was made in the USA from Danish skins...but in fact, the fur portion of the coat was made in China! They just sewed the lining into the coat in the USA...and so final assembly was in the US, they could say Made in the USA. Kinda crazy.

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FF -- Some of the pricing simply did not make sense to me. Crappy mink for $5,000 (I would have valued it at more like $2,500 retail) or great mink for $6,500 (I would have valued it at more like $4,500 retail-- The collar was unusually and terrifically wide and the skins were superb). And the China mink (simply labeled female mink) was slightly more expensive than a US made Blackglama coat (I'm assuming it was 100% US construction!).


When do we see the new jacket??? Any comments???

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Just pulling this quote from this article ...


The study also showed strength in sales of mink, the material most associated with classic fur coats. Mink's market share of women's and men's fur lines grew to 71 percent from 61 percent in 2003.


I totally understand this. I think mink is my favorite (affordable) fur (sable is still my favorite fur). While it does not have the same level of glamour associated with longer-haired fox, I think mink is an incredibly luxurious and versatile fur. I already own a ranch mink coat and jacket ... But with the myriad styles and colors available, the only fur that I seriously considered buying this past weekend was mink. There's just something about the understated richness and elegance of mink. I would love to own a mahogany mink sweater and a floor length shawl collar Blackglama mink coat in the event anyone is wondering what to get me for Christmas this year.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Another fur update ....


Didn't realize that my "Update" posted this a.m. ... I started it and then decided "naah" and went to work.


Oh, well ... As long as this post exists ...


I was in Chicago and Milwaukee over the weekend. It snowed Saturday and was cold and windy on Sunday. I wore my coyote coat to several holiday related events Saturday and I was surprised at the number of compliments I received on the coat. I have always thought it was purt durn nice ... It was good to see the general public agrees with me.


I saw many furs both days -- Mostly women in mink coats of varying hues and lengths. I saw two men in fur -- One gentleman wearing an unusual mink jacket (ranch mink with some blue iris trim in an unusual pattern) and one gentleman wearing a beaver jacket (I thought of WF when I saw him ... The jacket was your typical ill-fitting men's fur garment ... It should have been taken in at least 4"). The winner of the "Fur of the Weekend Award" was the beautiful tanuki coat worn by a distinguished looking lady Sunday afternoon. The coat turned my head and reminded me why tanuki is one of my favorite furs.


I thought it was odd Sunday afternoon when the lady who normally hands out 10% discount coupons right outside of Elan Furs on Michigan Avenue was handing them out half a block away. It made sense when I passed the entrance to the Elan store ... I could feel someone staring at me and when I turned to see who it was it turned out to be a woman holding one of those #$%& "Fur is cruel" posters, protesting outside the salon. So they are still at it long after FFF. I looked at her, rolled my eyes, and went on my merry way ... Warmly dressed in my ankle length ranch mink coat.

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Furgot to mention all the men I saw this weekend in trooper hats -- Both real and faux fur. There must have been at least two dozen in the 2+ hours I was on Michigan Avenue Sunday. A couple of them were really nice ... I fear I may have broken one of the commandments, coveting my neighbor's fab fur hat.

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