Hollywood is known to cater to the stars, but catering to the activist? Well, that’s a whole other story. It is the 21st Century after all, and none are as familiar with the changing times as West Hollywood – home to celebrity fashion havens like Sunset boulevard and Melrose Avenue – as it takes the first steps to ban the sale of fur.
In a city that leads the fashion industry with its daring accessories, chic ensembles and fashion elite, it’s hard to say whether the city council will actually have enough support to pass the bill, but the small Southern California city bordered by Hollywood and Beverly Hills took the first step in this unusual ban – approving an ordinance outlawing the sale of animal pelts or skins with fur or hair.
“West Hollywood has always been on the leading edge of progressive, compassionate legislation. We are thrilled that this historic first has taken place right here in West Hollywood,” Shannon Keith, an organizer with Fur Free West Hollywood, an advocacy group pushing for the fur ban, told WWD.
As home to well established luxury boutiques including Jenni Kayne, 3.1 Phillip Lim and Alberta Ferretti, backlash is guaranteed. Especially, says Andrew Dryden, creator director for H Lorenzo’s men and women’s fashion line, because most of the West Hollywood retailers have already purchased their merchandise through spring. “It is a problem for us because we have [fur] stuff that we have already bought in the store, and we have stuff that we have bought for next season and the season after. I don’t see us complying anytime soon.”
Whether everyone feels strongly about this move, the process is far from complete – both retailers and the city council will likely have to wait months until the ordinance falls into full effect, and by then perhaps some of the spring merchandise will already be off the shelves.