“Vegan Queen”. Her Majesty is keeping up with the climate emergency, and subsequent fashion trends. Queen Elizabeth II is making a real fashion statement. She is ditching real fur all together and replacing it with fake alternatives, out of love for the animals.
By doing so, Her Highness is encouraging an unconventional take on fur – an ancient costume in the fashion world, now being defied by the monarchy as well.
Rich History of Fur
Before diving straight into the royal hot topic, let’s go all the way back to when humans started using fur. This way we can understand where, why, and how this choice began.
As far as history goes, it was in prehistoric times when animal skin was primarily worn for practical reasons like warmth and protection, and interestingly, also for mystical beliefs.
Hunters’ fascination with the power of some animals, made them feel empowered when wearing their pelt. It was commonly accepted that the animal spirit remained with its skin and was carried on to the wearer.
It may well be possible that these hidden, magical properties of fur and leather still linger. As throughout the times, they have remained closely linked to the ruling layers of society. And more recently, it became a mainstream trend, and a huge market, that stays somehow correlated with enhanced status.
The “Vegan” Queen’s Wardrobe
So, who dresses Queen Elizabeth II? Angela Kelly, a British fashion designer, has taken on the role since 2002. She’s the one that’s responsible for all the ensembles that the Queen wears. Indeed, the general public learned that the British monarch is opting out of wearing real fur, from her memoir.
According to Orsola de Castro, founder of the Fashion Revolution global movement:
“The most sustainable garment is the one already in your wardrobe”.
And rightly so. The fur-free rule will only apply to the Head of State’s new outfits, with one exception worth mentioning – an alteration of a previous garment, worn in 2008, has seen the mink trim of a coat being replaced by a faux one.
The head of royalty is adhering to one of the major practices that maximize what you have in your closet, that is: recycle or mend your clothes!
Other Cruelty-Free Queens and Royals
Moving on to the other fur-free royal personalities, Princess Victoria of Sweden has similarly set the example of wearing animal-friendly apparel. The future queen of Sweden favours faux fur pieces form the Swedish brand Ida Sjostedt.
The ethical principles of Sjostedt encompass social responsibility, zero-waste approach and sustainable materials. As well as care and washing advice do minimize the environmental footprint of their garments.
However, looking at the preferred clothing brands of Duchess of Cambridge, we find that Kate Middleton wears TROY London.
The company offers both faux-fur and SAGA approved styles — SAGA is a certification that guarantees transparency, farm traceability and animal welfare — and Peruvian Connection that operates in sustainable and fair trade manners. Neither of them is fur-free, but both take into consideration animal and environmental impact.
So, the question remains: it is still a good decision to go completely fur-free even when its usage happens exclusively in sustainable productions or after the natural death of the animal? There is room for discussion. At the end of the day, you draw the line of your ethical boundaries.
Either way, I believe the “Vegan” Queen deserves a round of applause for protecting the animals and stirring up conservative thinking.
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