I have had quite a few questions about how to care for the Vintage fur coats I have been selling for the past week or so. I wanted to touch on some really important information because caring for fur correctly can be the difference in it lasting one year or for the rest of your life!
I want to mention that I do not support the fur industry as it stands. I purchase vintage coats only, and I do this because although they are gorgeous, we do not need to make more of them. There are plenty of really amazing vintage fur coats out there, and contributing to the harm of animals that are not also used for food is very much against everything I stand for. Thats why you won't see things like real snake skin or croc in my collections. I use cowhide and occasionally some sheep or pig suede. This is because these animals are killed primarily for their meat, and the hides are a byproduct of that use.
Ok! Now that I've shared that with you, here are the things you need to know about Fur Coats!
- Do not attempt to clean your fur yourself! Scroll to our last bullet point to learn more about how fur is professionally cleaned!
- Your hanger is your best friend- Use a wide, shaped hanger to hang your fur on. The shaping allows for the fur to be naturally shaped to the shoulder to prevent extra strain on the splits of fur.
Wooden Hangers from Etsy - Made in America
- Summer Storage- Keeping dust away from your fur coat is key. BUT, DO NOT cover your coat with a plastic bag. Plastic can change the coloration of your coat because it prevents the material from breathing. Use a cotton bag to cover it from Spring to Fall!
- Natural fur hates heat. The fur might look ok, but the leather under the fur can dry out and crack if it is stored somewhere warm/hot. The ideal temperature for fur is 45 degrees F and 50% humidity.
- Do not store your coat in a Cedar closet or chest. This might be safest for wools and cashmeres, but the oils can harm fur.
Hanging storage bag - from The Laundress
- When you are wearing your coat, try not to sit on it or the fur too often. Throw it on the back of your chair at a restaurant or bar, rather than sitting on it. This will help keep the coat from "matting".
- Don't allow water to sit on your coat! Fur coats can get wet, this isn't the end of the world. The most important thing you can do once it's wet is to hang it in a well ventilated room to dry. Do not use a hair dryer, blow dryer or clothes dryer to get the water out.
- If you get caught in a rain storm and your coat is soaked through, it is safest to take your coat to a professional fur cleaner.
- How to tell if your fur coat is real? If you aren't purchasing a coat from someone like yours truly, you can find out if the fur is real by snipping off a few strands from a spot you wouldn't notice it missing (under the arm or back collar). Place the fur strands in a heat-resistant dish like an ashtray and light with a match. Natural animal hair will burn quickly to ash while synthetic fur will melt.
- Its great to get your coat cleaned once a year if you can find time, preferably before you slip it in a storage bag for the Spring/Summer.
- A fur professional will inspect your coat for stains, rips, and tears.
- The lining is hand-cleaned with specific attention to spots and stains.
- The fur is then placed in a large drum filled with sawdust and an environmentally-safe cleaning solution. The coat is tumbled in this drum which draws the dirt and oils from the fur. The coat is then vacuumed to remove the sawdust and hand steamed to remove any final residue.
- The next process involves "electrifying" the coat. Using large rollers, electricity is used to make each hair lift, separate, and lie in the same direction.