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John Fluevog is Killing Bunnies?

September 26th, 2011 Andrew Martens

I know, I’m just as bad as the mainstream media, what with sensational headlines and all.  The problem is that I like Fluevog’s shoes, and I really dislike that they’re using fur in their lineup again.  Just the other day I was passing by one of their stores in Vancouver, and saw a boot, not just trimmed, but covered in fur.  That sure brings me back to last year…

In July of 2010, a volunteer with an animal rescue group noticed a rabbit fur-trimmed ‘Fox’ shoe in the John Fluevog collection at one of their downtown Vancouver stores.  Since she owned both rabbits *and* a lot of Fluevog shoes, she was very disappointed, and left some negative feedback on Fluevog’s website.  After some back-and-forth with Greg Fluevog, he stated that:

We have discontinued using fur, and we have no intentions on using fur in the future.

It’s one year later, and I spotted this version of the ‘Conviction‘ clog in the front window of Fluevog’s Granville St. store in Vancouver.

Fluevog conviction clog with rabbit fur

Hoping that it was synthetic, I went inside and checked the label of another pair that was on display.  Sadly, natural rabbit fur from Peru.

Rabbit fur, from Peru

Sigh.

Initially I was happy when I couldn’t find the fur-covered version of the boot in their online catalog, but then I found a picture of it on their site on their 2011 Fall Line press release:

Certitude and Conviction, Fall 2011; image copyright John Fluevog Shoes, used without permission

Now, back in 2010, Fluevog’s explanation was that they were trying to use fur that was a byproduct of the gourmet meat industry in Europe, and that an Italian tannery was going to help Fluevog to ‘recycle’ fur that was otherwise going to be discarded.  But the tannery purportedly pulled a fast one on Fluevog and ended up selling them fur that originated from China.  I expect that Fluevog may have the same reasoning or excuse this year about ‘recycling’ fur, but to be honest I haven’t bothered contacting them – one reason being that I discovered this in their store on a Saturday afternoon.  But after the whole mess last year, the fact that they are once again using fur in their products shows no real understanding or remorse about the situation.  In fact, it smells of a story that was concocted in order to make the noisy animal rights people go away.

While I acknowledge that fur-trimmed or -lined garments may have some use in clothing in some parts of the world, using fur in such an unnecessary decorative manner is a waste.  And even if by some stretch of the imagination, this fur *were* an actual byproduct of the meat industry, it still serves to legitimize the commercial fur trade as an acceptable material for fashion.  There are synthetic alternatives available, so why not use those?

I implore John Fluevog to please remove these items from the floor.  Just get rid of them.  Don’t sell your existing stock like you did last year; just pull them off the floor, remove the fur, and salvage what you can of the shoes.  You knew that people – customers of yours, fans of your shoes and your style – were opposed to this last year.  And yet you did it again.  Why?

Oh, and please don’t do it again.  Bowie doesn’t approve.

I do not like it

Anyone from Fluevog who would like to contact me regarding this post can reach me at: fluevog at andrewmartens dot com

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