Fur was one of the first materials used to make clothing. Although the popularity of fur today is less than it was even fifty years ago, it still has properties that make it desirable to many people. It is very warm and it is durable. In some cultures, fur is seen as glamorous and sophisticated, and is worn often by very affluent people. Cultures in very cold climates depend on fur to stay warm in extreme temperatures. Fur is often seen being worn as a coat, wrap, shawl, hat or hand muffs. Fox, mink, beaver and wolf are popular types of fur.
The use of fur can be controversial because some people think that it is cruel to kill an animal for its pelt. However, the fur industry is huge and there is still a demand for fur. In order to try to find a more humane way to provide fur to consumers, some businesses and individuals have started to make and market fashion accessories from what they call "accidental fur." Accidental fur is the fur from animals that were killed on the roadways. In other words, roadkill is now being turned into useful and elegant fur items!
A large number of animals are killed each day on roadways everywhere. The types of animals will vary by geographical location, but common carcasses found are raccoon, deer and muskrats. In Canada, finding a bear or a moose on the side of the road is not uncommon. Businesses have been started that collect roadkill and turn it into fine fur items. These furs have been sold throughout the world and the practice of using accidental fur is considered a more humane way to provide fur. This idea is catching on, and accidental fur is becoming more common in the fur market.
When a wild animal is hit by a car, it is examined to be sure the fur can be used. If it is usable, it is then skinned and the pelt is sent to a tannery to dry. From there it is turned into a beautiful fur accessory and sold to the public. Only non-endangered wild animals are used. Domestic pets, like cats and dogs, are not used, as that has the potential to make someone uncomfortable, knowing they are wearing someone's pet. Turning roadkill into beautiful fur pieces shows respect to the animal and some believe it allows their spirit to live on.
For more information on using furs in fashion, contact a company like fur coats by Herman Sellers Gough Furs.