Blog: It looks real, 'fur' goodness sake

Joe Ayling | 11 December 2007

My judgement of what is genuine was put to the test at the weekend when I attended The Clothes Show Live in Birmingham.

Animal rights group The RSPCA tested visitors on their ability to distinguish between displayed real and fake items, including perfume, watches, look-alike celebrities, and most significantly - fur. The charity was dedicating its large stand there towards a newly-launched campaign against real fur, called 100% Fake.

So how did I score? Well of the 18 items on display behind glass cabinets, I guessed 12 correctly. These included a fur coat and handbag, which were faux fur, pictures of Tom Cruise and Angelina Jolie and a £50 note. There was also a picture of a fake pair of the female anatomy that I won't dwell on, which I guessed right.

Among items on display that baffled me, however, were a genuine D&G belt, Gucci bag and Stella McCartney perfume. My girlfriend was fast and enthusiastic to point out they were all real though, meaning it could be an expensive Christmas.

The RSPCA hit the headlines on just-style last week, when it accused two leading UK retailers of wrongly labelling goods containing fur (see below), and is concerned that consumers are often unaware they are buying real fur.

There are two days left at The Clothes Show, and exhibitors will be revving up for one last push.

I enjoyed my visit to the annual event, and it was also interesting to see a zone dedicated solely to ethical fashion there this year. This signals the growing consumer interest in the UK's thriving bamboo and hemp-based industries.
By Joe Ayling, news editor.

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