Fake Fur, Real Women
In my previous blog I spoke about my love of animals and one of the things that drew me to fauxPlay was the ethical element of the business, as all of our faux fur is entirely man-made and I could never bear the thought of animals being harmed in the making of real fur products.
One of the first things that I did when we bought the business was sit down and think about the values that I wanted this business to have. One of the major things for me was that I wanted it to be a brand that reflected and appealed to real women.
In society there is still an awful lot of pressure on women and girls to be a certain weight, act a certain way, dress a certain way, and so on.
We often struggle to be accepted if we don’t fit into the “perfect woman” mould that society has created.
Things are changing, but slowly. And I feel it’s important that fauxPlay helps to change that mindset.
It has been heartening to see more inclusive models being used in the world of fashion. As women we are all different shapes, sizes, height, and age.
I wanted my brand to reflect this. When we bought the business, the website needed a lot of work.
It was what I described as “clunky”, and in urgent need of updating. One of the issues that I had with the site was that I didn’t feel that garments were shown properly. There was just picture after picture of a sultry-looking model wearing different faux-fur items. It seemed so boring, and looking at it as a potential buyer, there was nothing drawing me to the products.
I looked at websites on which I did want to buy some clothes and I realised that every time I wanted to buy an item I was picturing myself in that outfit at an event or occasion. That was what I needed to do with fauxPlay – I needed pictures of real women in real outfits.
I immediately sent out messages to many of the fabulous women I know and asked if they would be our “models” for fauxPlay – an entirely unpaid role, but one that I think everyone has thoroughly enjoyed.
The pictures we have now make me smile every time I look at them. They show women doing things like smiling and enjoying themselves (very few sultry poses, all of our models are natural smilers).
When I look at the pictures I can imagine myself in those different scenarios – cocktails with the girls, a day at the races, or a family wedding.
Our youngest model was my beautiful niece, who is just eight years old. Our oldest wouldn’t thank me for sharing her age publicly, so we’ll just say she is in the 50+ bracket.
I look at the pictures now and I feel proud that our range is representing women and girls across a range of ages and sizes.
It was great fun taking the pictures with the women and every one of those images now represents a happy memory for me.
I also wanted to get across the idea that faux fur products don’t just have to be for “posh” events – you can wear them with anything.
Several of our pictures have been taken with our models in jeans or casual coats and tops.
Some of our models wore a lot of make-up, some hardly any or none at all – it was their choice.
I don’t know if any of you will have seen the recent television series Mrs America, but that really brought home to me how much work there is still to do for women to be truly equal in society.
I think a large part of that can be done by us always building each other up, not knocking each other down.
As women we need to be supportive of each other and celebrate our different choices.
Whatever your “look”, the only thing that matters is that you as an individual are happy with it.
I hope that our new pictures reflect this ethos and that together we can help women to find our equal place in society.