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I guess we should be happy that fake fur is considered more marketable?

Baby Phat handbags may be hideous, but at least they're not real leather.

Baby Phat handbags may be hideous, but at least they’re not real leather.

KVBC in Las Vegas (home of Las Vegans!) reports that the local Burlington Coat Factory is trying to pass off real fur as fake.

The article is little vague, and I can’t watch the video on my Mac, but it sounds like the Baby Phat coats are advertised as having faux fur trim, but the actual labels indicate that it’s real racoon or coyote fur. The Humane Society, who suspects it to be actually dog and/or cat fur, is on the case.

So, is Baby Phat and Phat Farm founder/CEO Russell “Cruel’s Not Cool” Simmons selling fur now as well as leather?


  1. Comment by

    Patrick Kwan

    on #

    Actually, Russell Simmons sold Phat Farm a couple years ago and is no longer involved. Phat Farm was indeed fur free when he was there, but Baby Phat, which was his ex-wife’s, was never fur free. Russell is vegan has always been a great animal advocate. Many New Yorkers may also recognize him from his frequent patronage of Red Bamboo or VP2.

  2. Comment by

    Jason Das

    on #

    Yeah, he sold the company, but according to the info I could find (here and here), Russell is still CEO of Phat Fashions, which includes both Baby Phat and Phat Farm. Kimora Lee Simmons was/is creative director or something at Baby Phat, but never owned it.

  3. Comment by


    on #

    I just spoke to a rep at Phat Farm and was told that they do indeed sell REAL fur trim on some of the coats in their line. This is in addition to the dozens of leather items they sell in the form of sneakers, and jackets, some down-filled also. Russell Simmons is indeed still CEO of Baby Phat, and therefore is directly responsible for the use of fur in the line–and for what very well might be dog and cat fur
    Russell Simmons also recently admitted to eating fish in an interview in the Miami Herald, and was very nonchalant about the whole thing.
    Please, let’s not lower the bar of the meaning of veganism to pander to celebrities and CEO’s who care more about their “bottom line” than anything else. A fish-eating, fur and leather selling “vegan” only serves to further confuse the public about veganism.
    Russell also recently became a shill for the diamond industry in their effort to deny the existence of conflict diamonds, in a transparent effort to do damage control since the release of the film Blood Diamond. Not surprisingly, Russell has a jewelry line–The Simmons Jewelry Company–which sells diamonds.
    Russell Simmons is no vegan–not by any stretch of the imagination, no matter how often he may eat at Red Bamboo.

  4. Comment by


    on #

    I want to second Edita’s comments: Veganism is not about celebrities and all of their bullshit—not even the ones like Alicia Silverstone who stick with it. Our culture’s morbid fascination and deification of celebrities is disgusting in and of itself, and we vegans should stop setting ourselves up for this kind of stupid shit.

    Russell Simmons is by no definition a vegan. Someone should have told his dumb butt that a long time ago, and stopped him from misusing the term all over mainstream media. People like him give vegans a bad name; but we also do ourselves a disservice by acting like he was somehow important to this movement for—what? Russell Simmons did nothing for the cause, especially when—this whole time—he’s been selling the bodies of dead animals.

  5. Comment by

    Olivia Lane

    on #

    oh skeet skeet.

  6. Comment by

    Jamie Hagen

    on #

    Nice work Edita. And more info about that nonsense involving Simmons and the conflict diamond industry here via the Colbert Report.