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Designer Karl Lagerfeld defends his use of fur

January 5, 2009 |  2:11 pm

Karl Lagerfeld of design house Chanel is in trouble with PETA Designer Karl Lagerfeld of Chanel is incurring the wrath of animal activists once again with his statements to the Telegraph defending his use of fur in his designs. 

Although Lagerfeld said he doesn't personally wear fur, he told the Telegraph:

"In a meat-eating world, wearing leather for shoes and clothes and even handbags, the discussion of fur is childish."

The designer was quoted as saying that hunters who have learned no other skills depend on the fur industry to make a living and that they are "killing those beasts who would kill us if they could."

A PETA spokesperson responded to Lagerfeld's statements:

"The vast majority of fur these days comes not from hunters as he suggests, but from Chinese fur farms, where no law protects the millions of animals who are routinely beaten and skinned alive.

"Lagerfeld’s childish refusal to acknowledge the needless suffering behind every piece of fur and listen to public opinion means that he is being overtaken in the style stakes by an increasing number of designers who believe that cruelty has no place in fashion."

(PETA's "Fur Is Dead" campaign quotes a 2006 International Fur Federation article that stated that 85% of animals killed for their fur are raised on factory farms.)

Our colleague Elizabeth Snead at the Dish Rag blog ponders:

Maybe he's just mad about that fur-industry expose video that Stella McCartney sent to him.  The designer, who narrates the video, says Lagerfeld "felt he needed to return" it to her. Click here to see the video. But we warn you, it's very hard to watch. Wanna bet Karl didn't?

--Lindsay Barnett

Photo: Christophe Morin / European Pressphoto Assn.

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