Consumers currently prefer woolskin

16 February 2003

It started as a window display stunt when Istanbul-based garment producers, Asflas, displayed some short (very short) skirts fashioned from fur in their shop-front window. They caught the fashion mood of the moment in soft, sheep fur, dyed in fashion colours. They were unlined and skimpy for the winter season. Price $150. An Antalya retailer saw them and scooped up a score or so and sold them for $350. Several Russian ladies in Antalya saw them and passed the fashion tip along to friends and the items were a sell-out at $750. Russians define markets wherever they are but Antalya, on Türkiye's Mediterranean coast, enjoys a mild winter climate and the 'skimpy skirt' is probably not what your average Muscovite is wearing. Meanwhile in London, Marks and Spencer's reported run-away sales on their Turkish-produced ankle-length coats. These are lambskin and fully lined with combed and dyed sheep's fleece. About 1,000 moved off the Oxford Street racks in under an hour. The price tag was £600 - a loss-leading item, compared with the £1,200 that a designer label would command. Few are deterred from the feel of fur or the look of leather, regardless of seasons.

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