Born Free USA announced this month the winners of its third annual “fffashion” competition. The fur-free fashion show highlighted the works of emerging designers “who believe in the benefits of shunning fur, protecting animals and the environment, and embracing the green fashion movement,” according to a press release.
The organization's website states, "Every year, more than 50 million animals are violently killed in the name of 'fashion.' Some fall victim to barbaric traps. Others spend the entirety of their lives in grim conditions in fur farms across the globe before being slaughtered."
Born Free USA's CEO, Will Travers, explained the idea behind the fashion show. He said the organization “created this competition to celebrate emerging fashion designers who believe in the welfare of animals and refuse to use fur in their work ... This year proves one thing: compassion is in fashion.”
According to Born Free, the winners of the fffashion show were chosen by a panel of celebrity judges, including actress Julia Barr (“All My Children”), Kristin Bauer (“True Blood”), and Rachelle Carson-Begley (“Living with Ed” on Discovery's Planet Green). Brita Bell, editor of E/The Environmental Magazine, activist and model Summer Rayne Oakes and fashion designer Elizabeth Emmanuel were also judges.
A list of the show's winners can be found here, and their designs can be seen in the slideshow below.
Various organizations have long fought the use of animal fur for clothing. Groups like PETA and Born Free USA have staged undercover investigations into the fur industry, revealing inhumane practices. PETA is noted for its provocative, and often nude, protests against fur, leather and animal abuse.
Animals who are trapped in the wild can suffer for days from blood loss, shock, dehydration, frostbite, gangrene, and attacks by predators. They may be caught in steel-jaw traps that slam down on their legs, often cutting to the bone; Conibear traps, which crush their necks with 90 pounds of pressure per square inch; or water-set traps, which leave beavers, muskrats, and other animals struggling for more than nine agonizing minutes before drowning.
Photos Courtesy of Charleton Churchill and Born Free USA. Captions Courtesy of Born Free USA.