Thursday, April 9, 2009

Fur Fashions - No Animals Harmed!

Perhaps you read yesterday’s post, and started to wonder what you could do with all of that hair. My first suggestion would be to spread it around your yard, and let birds collect it to use in their nests. I regularly do this with both dog hair and horse hair after grooming. What fun it is to go for a stroll and see fibers from my animals in nests! However, if you go this route, you better act fast, as it is the end of nest building season.

Have you ever thought about incorporating fur into your fashion? No, I don’t mean killing mink, rabbit or fox to use their skin and fur… use your dog’s fur! No killing involved – in fact, just the opposite, by regularly grooming your pet you are improving their health and well being, and the excess fur can be spun into all sorts of fashionable accessories. A few people are currently capitalizing on the enjoyment of having a “piece of your pet” with you at all times, and the great thing is, this fur comes from regular grooming sessions! Catty Shack Creations gained their fame by collecting cat fur removed in routine grooming sessions and creating purses and other accessories, but they are now creating accessories using dog fur too! If you are interested in creating your own dog hair fashions check out the book, Knitting With Dog Hair.

If I saw someone carrying this bag made by Catty Shack Creations I would not think it came from the fur of their dog, would you?

A dear friend of mine over at Kate’s Equine is creating bracelets from horse’s tail hair. Again, no animals are harmed in the creation of this fashionable jewelry. I am actually wearing one of her bracelets as I write this. My bracelet is made from a horse I rode and showed in high school and college named Crabby. Crabby was recently retired, and donated to a young woman with Williams Syndrome, and is currently being used as a therapeutic riding horse. He’s the type of horse that loves having a job, but in his old age needed to step down from competition. He is miserable when he is not being ridden, groomed and loved and this is the perfect retirement situation for him. His new “mother” is hoping to compete in the Special Olympics this summer, and I am so proud of both her and Crabby!

When I was little my mother and I made a beautiful and fashionable hat embezzled with peacock feathers belonging to Mowie, our peacock. While I don’t condone ripping feathers from a bird, peacocks naturally do shed or drop feathers occasionally, and overtime these can be collected and used in all sorts of crafty ways. Mowie, named for the Mohawk of feathers he had as a baby, was a wonderful asset to our farm, as he enjoyed dining on ticks, which helped reduce the risk of tick born illnesses in both my family and our four legged friends.

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