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Persian Lamb: Telling the Genuine from the Faux

by Sharon Maxwell - Yamamoto (01/06/09).

Persian Lamb is a beautiful fur. It’s warm, rather sturdy and can be sporty or dressy. It comes in different curl patterns, depending on the age of the lamb from which it was taken. So why can’t you find it anymore?

The answer is, you can, if you are willing to pay couture prices to buy the designer goods which incorporate the different types of Persian Lamb. There have been stories of Persian Lamb being a cruel fur because it required the killing of a pregnant ewe in order to get her unborn lamb. That is debatable; however, these stories have made it a less acceptable fur to wear. For those who admire and wish to acquire Persian Lamb, vintage is the way to go.

faux-persian-lamb-jacket-with-white-mink-collar

Persian Lamb is a beautiful fur. It’s warm, rather sturdy and can be sporty or dressy. It comes in different curl patterns, depending on the age of the lamb from which it was taken. But this one is faux, although the collar is white mink.

Persian lamb was very popular from the early 20th century until about the 1970’s, with the popularity waning a bit after that. It was still found trimming suits and coats; however, full Persian Lamb coats were not easily found after that time, hence the value of a vintage Lamb coat.

There are many vintage coats around, usually dating from the middle of the last century. But, there are also many manufacturers who developed fabrics that mimic the genuine article pretty well. Many people are fooled by the faux furs, and even those who sell vintage clothing are often not experts in the field and simply believe what they are told when they buy the garments from estates.

The term “Persian Lamb” can refer to many different types of lamb fur, sometimes called Astrakhan, Karakul or Broadtail. All of these refer to lamb, but at different ages after birth (or even before, taken from stillborn lambs). The type I will address in this article is the curly type, which is taken from the lambs when they are about 10 days old.

faux-persian-lamb-coat-with-mahogany-mink-collar

Faux Persian Lamb is easy to spot, if you know what you’re looking for. This is another example of a faux fur coat with a mahogany mink collar.

Faux Persian Lamb is notorious for being passed off as real. The very first Persian Lamb piece I ever (mistakenly) bought was faux fur, and I quickly learned how to tell the difference. I have even seen real and faux furs all labeled as genuine fur in a vintage store, simply because so many people just don’t know how to tell which is which. When I told the owner how to test it, she refused to look and said I was wrong, so I most certainly did not buy from her. An on-line seller once told me that Persian Lamb was shorn from the live animal and then sewn in a curl pattern on a fabric backing, so that’s why, although he “found the fabric between the curls, as I said he would, the coat was definitely real Persian Lamb.” I’m afraid he was in denial about how furs are made.

There is a lot of misconception out there, so to find out if the fur is genuine or faux, read on.

If you are buying a fur from a shop, do the following (or if shopping online, ask the seller to do these tests and look for these things):

  • Look at the fur under a strong light and part the curls with your fingers. If you see a woven black fabric between the curls, it’s faux fur. Real Persian Lamb has a smooth hide, which is covered with the hair, and the curls will be much harder to part. The curl pattern on a faux fur will appear to be too uniform, indicating it to be machine-made, while real fur has a much more random pattern of curls.
  • Next, beware if a seller claims a lamb coat has absolutely no flaws at all. Persian Lamb will nearly always have a bit of edge wear at the back of the neck, cuffs, pocket edges, front edges and around fasteners. The wear will appear to be ivory-colored hide showing through where the fur has worn off. There will usually be tiny areas where the curls have split from the hide, showing ivory-colored skin in little spots (which can be repaired by dabbing with black leather dye).
  • Finally, a faux Persian Lamb fur is rather lightweight, while the real thing usually weighs a ton.
persian-lamb-fur-closeup faux-persian-lamb-with-faux-fur-collar


Genuine Persian Lamb looks like the example on the left, while the example on the right is faux Persian Lamb with a faux fur collar.

Sometimes you will see a coat with tiny, nubby curls, and the seller or price tag may also state “Persian Lamb.” This is not fur at all, not even faux fur, but a wool fabric called “boucle.” This was a very popular fabric in the 1950’s, often called “Poodle Cloth,” but it is also confused with Persian Lamb.

I can look at a picture and instantly know if it’s real or fake. I can also pick one up without looking at it and know the same. If you are interested in Persian Lamb, you can learn this too, but you must do the tests and compare before you buy. Faux fur has its merits, but you should not buy unless you know which one you are getting. Good selling points in favor of the faux fur are that you don’t have to keep it in cold storage, it’s cheaper to clean, it’s sturdier and you can wear it in the rain.

Be aware that the faux Persian Lamb coats are usually accented with rabbit fur collars, while the real ones are made with mink collars (although there are exceptions). The faux Persian Lamb jackets you will find with the label “A Winter Product” almost always have a black Rabbit collar, black velvet buttons with loop closures and no furrier’s label. Sometimes this style has no label at all.

faux-persian-lamb-jacket-with-rabbit-collar-velvet-button-loop-closure

This little cropped coat is a common example of a faux Persian Lamb product.

This little cropped jacket (above) is  very common, and you will see yourself coming and going in it, so I only recommend this if you want something to wear running around town. The care label, which you will never find in a real fur, will state “Clean by Furrier Method Only, no Steam.” If you see that, you can be sure it’s not a real fur. Many people misunderstand this label and think “Furrier Method” means it’s real, while it actually means that the fur should be treated as if it were real. The names “Safari,” “Sportowne,” “Borgana” and “Miracurl” are a few of the most widely-known names of manufacturers and designers of faux fur garments.

safari-fairmoor-label somali-label zanzibar-by-fairmoor-la-france-label miracurl-label

These are examples of labels of faux Persian Lamb products. They often say “Clean by Furrier Method Only, no Steam,” which is true; this is how to treat a faux Persian Lamb product. But that doesn’t make it genuine Persian Lamb.

Isn’t it funny how a fur that has become so unpopular could be so greatly sought after in a faux fur version? It seems that people really do want the look of Persian Lamb. After reading this article, I hope those of you who wish to have the real thing can now identify it, acquire it, wear it and love it. I know I do.

Sharon Maxwell-Yamamoto is a Worthologist who specializes in vintage clothing and accessories.

WorthPoint: Get the Most from Your Antiques and Collectibles.

77 Responses to “Persian Lamb: Telling the Genuine from the Faux”

  1. Thank you for the interesting article. I do like persian lamb. Does vintage have value?

    • AnAhitA says:

      If your fur is the genuine article it’s value is approx: 4,500.00

      • AnAhita,
        I’m afraid you’re overestimating a vintage persian lamb coat by quite a bit. Even a vintage mint-condition Schiaparelli isn’t worth that. To give that kind of information, a coat would have to be really appraised in person and then believe me, persian lamb is just not worth that much. Mink might be, Chinchilla and certainly Sable, but not persian lamb.

        • AnAhitA says:

          Sharon pleae check ELAN FURS and you will see top quality Furrier prices , and yes of ourse one must add another type of fur to add some visual Intrest and design Factors

          AnA’HitA

          • AnAhita, I do know fur prices very well, and a brand new persian lamb coat can cost that, but this post is about vintage. Most vintage persian lamb coats are worth very little on the resale market. Only a collector’s piece like a Schiaparelli or one owned by a famous person would hold any higher value. Fur prices differ greatly between new and used. I have purchased many of both.

  2. Ann says:

    Very interesting! I do have a real Persian lamb coat that belonged to my grandmother, and you’re right – it weighs a ton! Since my grandmother was smaller and much shorter than I am, the coat does not really fit me well. I was considering having it altered, but would that compromise it’s real value? Any comments?

  3. Alice, vintage Persian lamb is not terribly valuable, but depending on its condition, a coat can cost about $150 or so.

    Ann (I think that’s what that tiny name says), if altering the coat will make it wearable, then go ahead and do it. A good furrier can re-style any fur coat that has pelts in good enough condition. If that doesn’t work, having it made into a nice big muff-purse with matching hat is a fun idea, or using some to trim another coat to match the muff and hat! Cute! If the coat is a designer label, like Schiaparelli, better to leave it intact and sell it in an online auction.

  4. Just thought of another thing, Ann….if you need an appraisal of the coat or an opinion on restyling it, you can “Ask a Worthologist” here on the site.. You will need to send pictures and they will assign the question to me.

    Take care!

  5. Heidi says:

    I just bought a full lengh coat from a flea market. It is all Persian Lamb without any other type of fur collar or cuff. I found a stamp on the underside of the hide.

    H Basch & Co.,Inc.
    Lammoire
    Hammer Brand
    Union

    Do you know anything about this? Any history about it?

    • Fred Basch says:

      The Hammer Brand is the Registred Trademark of Herman Basch Co. and if you have the Hammer Brand Stamp on your Persian Lamb it is the real deal.

  6. Lezlie says:

    First let me say that I appreciate your articles. They are very helpful and answer so many questions. Now, I have a question for you. I have an amazing faux leopard coat with the Fairmoor Safari label you have pictured in this article. The coat just fell into my hands. I know nothing about it. Would you please tell me when this line of faux fur was produced and perhaps a little something about the company that manufactured this product? I was also wondering if you had any ideas about what these coats are worth. I was so delighted to see these Fairmoor labels because I had never heard of this company before. Thank you so much for the most helpful information that you pass on to us.

  7. Lee says:

    I just bought a persian lamb jacket with a white/grey fur collar at a thrift store with a label that reads “Astrakan Made in France styled by Lepshire”. Based on your article I think it might be fake because the curl seems too uniform, the lining is rayon not silk, the furrier label says “A fashion from Hein’s”. There’s a stamp on the underside of the hide but is’t very legible except for FRANCE. What do you think? Thanks in advance.

  8. Tina says:

    My grandmothers persian-lamb coat was recently passed down to me. Based on the information in this article, I believe it is real Persian lamb. The label says:
    Toronto Furs
    K Bouyotonoulos
    1 Philhellinon Str.
    (Constitution Square)
    Athens – Greece

    The coat is interesting because there is no mink collar – the collar is persian lamb. Also, there is a zipper that runs along the hem of the coat where I can add it’s extension piece to make the coat longer.

    It doesn’t fit me but not sure how much it may be worth. Would like to know this before I would attempt to cut into it and make a purse, etc….

    Any comments or suggestions? Thanks

  9. Thanks to all for your comments! If you need specific information/valuation, please go to the Ask a Worthologist section! Thank you!

    DivaSharon

  10. Josie says:

    Hi
    I have just been given a jacket. I wonder if you could shed any light as to value etc on what details I am about to give.

    The coat is black, with a mink collar.
    The rest I am told is UNBORN LAMB FUR.
    The jacket was made in New York in the 1950s for a lady by the name ERICA, her name is embroided on the silk lining inside the jacket.

    It has a fur label authority label in it with a serial stamp/code or what seems to be.

    I know it is not faux as one of the seems running from the elbow is open and its hide.

    Does this sound like any special at all?
    Many thanks, josie

  11. HI Josie,

    Please go to “Ask a Worthologist” and you will be able to submit pictures to get an appraisal. Thanks for using Worthpoint!

  12. Vicki says:

    I was just given a (pre-owned) persian lamb jacket. There are a few gaps where some of the wool has pulled away from hide. A (Russian) seamstress who I use for various alterations and who says she is very skilled at repairing furs, etc. said that she needs “mink tape” and/or glue to repair. Does this sound correct? She said she would go in behind the lining to repair. Where do I find “mink tape”? Thanks for your comments……..I wouldn’t have a clue…..

    • Hi Vicki,

      I have searched for the answer and I’m sorry to tell you, I have never heard of mink tape. Maybe it’s a different term in Russian and she’s giving you a direct translation…? I’m so sorry I can’t help you on this one! If you find out, do tell me so I can learn something too! Thanks and good luck.

      Sharon

      • Vicki says:

        I don’t know what she used to repair jacket and she wouldn’t tell me………trade secret I guess. However, to my “nonexpert” eye, she has done a beautiful job. She missed a couple of spots which is no big deal because I can always take it back. She told me she used to work with minks in Los Angeles.

  13. Teri says:

    Thanks for the wonderfully informative article! I’ve been fascinated by Persian lamb and this was so helpful. The one thing I am wondering is how warm are the coats? I am new to living up north and am desperate for a warm coat. I’m guessing that Persian lamb isn’t the best option since it should not get wet — what happens when it does get wet? — but am curious if it might work on the cold, dry days. Thanks for any insight you can provide.

  14. Larry Pressler says:

    Was Persian lamb clothing made from unborn lamb skins? Do you know any more of the history of this unique process?
    Been a sheep rancher family since 1868 and didn’t know about this!!!

  15. Lisa says:

    Can you dye a grey persian lamb coat to black??

  16. BeBe says:

    I bought a full length black persian lamb coat at a flea market. It has an unpleasant smell. I have aired it in the sun for a day or so. Is there something else I can do to remove the smell. Thanks for your help.

  17. jinx says:

    I love the styles of vintage furs. How do you you wear them without looking like an old lady?

  18. LOL! Ah, yer killin’ me! Well, I never feel like an old lady…you don’t wear them with surgical stockings and orthopedic shoes. Do wear something elegant, sassy and flattering, keeping the outfit simple, allowing the fur to be the statement maker. Please go to my website, http://www.divasharonsdivinevintage, and read my introduction to wearing vintage. I give suggestions on what to wear and how to wear it. Most of all, wear ATTITUDE! You are FABULOUS in your vintage fur! :-)

    p.s. I have shower caps on my website, but I don’t recommend wearing them with furs….

  19. Bernice says:

    Hi there,

    I purchased a black persian lamb coat from the thrift store. It is black with a mink collar. I do not find a label. It weighs a ton!! It sure looks real. What do you think?

    • Sharon Maxwell - Yamamoto says:

      Hi Bernice,
      Brown can be a natural color for Persian lamb. The skin would still be an ivory color when the fur is torn off it. If it’s worn at the edges, the skin can look a dark color.

    • Sharon Maxwell - Yamamoto says:

      Hi again Bernice,
      Sorry, I put the wrong reply to you before. To answer your question, please go to the Ask a Worthologist section so you can submit a photo. It’s not really possible to tell you anything without a picture and at least a label, if it’s a recognizable one of faux furs.

  20. zoe ann kimmey says:

    Thanks for the very informative article. I bought a beautiful chocolate brown persian a couple of years ago and after reading about checking between the curls to see if it is skin or cloth, I am wandering about mine. Since it is brown, would that be a natural color or dyed?? what color would the skin be if it was a natural brown? Thanks very much.

    • Sharon Maxwell - Yamamoto says:

      Zoe Ann, I put your answer above my mistake. Brown can be a natural lamb color and the skin would appear dark if worn at the edges, as with a black lamb, but if the curls are torn off the skin, you will see the same ivory color there.

  21. Nikki says:

    I have a long Black Persian curley lamb coat that was just given to me. The problem with it is that when you touch it there’s a black oily substance that comes off on my hands. Does anyone know what that is, and is there a solution to the problem? Thanks.

    • Sharon Maxwell - Yamamoto says:

      Hi Nikki,
      Sorry for the late reply. I can’t imagine what on earth is on your persian lamb…please do take it to a furrier. I am sure it’s not something you can take care of at home. Please let me know what it was when you find out! Good luck!
      Thanks for coming to Worthpoint!

  22. Kay says:

    Y’all do realize you are talking about an aborted baby lamb! That’s horrifying!!!

    • Betty says:

      Yes Kay it’s disgusting. “Ladies and possibly a gentleman or two” go right ahead & wear your dead lamb skin with attitude so people know you’re not wearing faux. And in regards to VALUE$$$$ the SKIN was worth more to the lamb it was ripped from. Really how disgusting.

  23. Sarah Manning says:

    Hi Sharon,
    I bought my second black Persian (real) & the curious thing is that it is splitting. It split in the right shoulder, which I repaired with some glue & leather reinforcement (easy to so as the lining is open at the bottom of the coat. Then the left shoulder split a bit. I repaired it. Now the elbow – which I repaired then the same elbow split in another spot – so I added a large leather elbow reinforcement. This all happened the day after I bought it & I haven’t even left the house with it yet!

    Can you tell me… why would this happen? Shall I continue fixing it or is it a lost cause? My only thought is that perhaps the hide has dried out? That perhaps it wasn’t properly taken care of by its previous owner?

    Thanks for your help

    • Hi Sarah,

      Oh my, I’m sorry to tell you that it seems like a lost cause. If it’s splitting all over like that, you have surmised correctly, it’s dried out. Live and learn…we’ve all been stung like that, I’ll bet. I’ve had the same thing happen to me! Is there any way you can go back to the seller and tell/show them what happened? It doesn’t seem right that it’s absolutely unwearable. If not, you have to just chalk it up to experience and maybe make a pillow or bears out of it. I would do pillows because I don’t know how to make bears! LOL But next time, test the fur out (gently) by pulling on some of the areas that would get stressed to make sure it’s still sturdy enough to wear. Don’t shake vigorously, as that can actually tear a skin, but a little pulling won’t hurt if the skins are still wearable. It’s a bummer, though, and I feel for you! Learn from this and it will not happen to you again!

      Best wishes and thanks for coming to Worthpoint!

      Sharon

  24. cyn gioergio says:

    I am thinking of buying a gray varigated short persian lamb jacket, it has a label saying “Ozan Furs Reading Pa” should I assume this this is a real fur jackets because it was bought at a furrier shop?

    • Hi Cyn,

      Well, I hate to say you should ever assume, but the chances are very, very good that it’s a real fur. Furrier’s occasionally do sell faux furs, but all the best furriers I have ever been to have only sold the real thing. I have seen a furrier’s label in a faux fur once or twice, but it’s very rare. Try the tests I outline in the article to see if you can determine if it’s real or faux. I’m betting on the real, but of course, cannot guarantee.

  25. Emily says:

    I’m so glad that I found this article. I just cleaned out my closet and came across my black lambs wool coat that was given to me by my Great Aunt. The lining was silk and was ripped pretty bad. Since I love the coat, I decided to take out the lining and try and re-line it so that I could still wear the coat. Upon removing the old torn lining, I discovered a stamp that I decided to check out (how I found this article). It is stamped “H.Basch & Co Hammer – Brani ” on all of the leather pieces sown together. There is also a date of 1958 w/ 16 listed under it. I’m guessing that 1958 was the year it was made, but I’m not sure about the “16″

    Anyway, any suggestions on relining the coat? Should I attempt to do it myself? I’m a bit nervous about damaging the leather now. Can I condition it somehow first and then reline it?

    Thanks!

    Emily

  26. Lorna Parasilti says:

    Found a vintage coat that is black and brown with an art deco label, Harry Glotzer, 108 Pratt Street, Hartford, Conn. Any idea how old it is?

  27. amylynne says:

    Sharon– what a GREAT article! I learned A LOT! I recently found a sweet grey and black persian lamb coat witha mink collar. The label said Schiaparelli (sp? I don’t have it handy) and the this was also sewn all over the lining as well. I bought the coat for myself as a treat; it has been so cold and miserable lately here in the NorthEast (Massachusetts) It is a coat I can see myself wearing for many many years. I purchased the coat for $221, and left the store. Much to my surprise, I got a call from the store owner a day later..the coat had been mismarked–she was NOT calling to get more $ or try to get the coat back, but to tell me that there had been a nistake, and the coat was supposed to have been listed at $2210! I went back to the store to check, and saw another similar Schiaparelli persian lamb coat for $1600+!! My feeling is that the coat or any item is “worth” whatever the market (buyer) is willing to pay! I LOVE the coat, but could NEVER have afforded that price! Anyway…now my question…ssince the persian lamb coat has actual wool on the outside, is there any special care instructions? How can you keep the skin from getting too dry? Is there an oil or some conditioner? And is the coat worth insuring? I don’t want an appraisal; I am just curious if vintage Schiaparelli persian lamb coats in excellent condition actually sell for over $2200?!? Many thanks! Amylynne

    • Hi Amylynne,

      Wait a bit…I have located some “at home” cleaning and conditioning products and I plan to test them. If I think they’re good, I’ll recommend them here. Wouldn’t that be great, if we can do it at home? I can’t wait to report back!

      Take care,
      Sharon

  28. Katie says:

    Dear sharon,
    I am looking at a Persian wool coat on line. It has a grollmans Easton pa for the label the person selling it says that the hide under the liner is grey. The seller says it is very heavy. Is this possible?
    Thank you,
    Katie

    • HI Katie,
      Yes, it’s possible for the hide to appear gray if it has been dyed black. It sounds real, but it would be good if she could take a picture of the hide and send it to you. It shouldn’t look like any type of woven fabric at all, should look smooth and not fuzzy.

      Take care,
      Sharon

  29. Carolyn says:

    I have two of my grandmother’s “persian lamb” coats. One is short cropped jacket with no label and a fur collar;the lamb’s wool clearly has fabric between the curls. The other is long with a label that says “Designed by John Pilibosian New York” and has the qualities of the authentic persian lamb you describe in your article. Is this designer’s name familiar to you/anyone reading this? Thank you in advance.

  30. What interesting and great info! I have (what I believe is) a Persian lamb scarf) that I’ll now go and check.
    Seems to me, since it’s wool, that it would be VERY warm for the mid-Easterners who were asking, as well as very weather proof–shake off the rain or snow. Is this a duhh-h-h?, or am I making an ass-u-me?
    Can I ASSUME the ?’s that weren’t answered have to submit a Worthologist request? Bummer!

  31. elizabeth says:

    i have a black persian lamb walking coat with a mink collar. it says g. fox and company hartford connecticut. from the 50′s or 60′s. what is the approximate worth?
    Thanks for the help!

  32. Amanda says:

    Hi Sharon
    My local vintage shop is selling a ‘persian lamb full length coat for £1200. Trouble is it is cream. From your site I see they are all black or occassionally dark brown. Can you get them in cream or is this a fake?
    Thanks
    Amanda

  33. Deb Bilinski says:

    I was given a vintage persian lamb coat and wish to sell it. Unfortunately none of the vintage shops in my area will even look at it. Any suggestions? It is a full length coat with a black mink collar. It also has the most marvelous buttons. I live in upstate NY

  34. I inherited my mother’s genuine persian lamb jacket with mink color and cuffs. I believe it was purchased from a furrier in the 1950′s.

    I know my mother only wore it once as she had no place “fancy enough” to wear it. I have never worn it for the same reason. It is in absolute excellent and unworn condition.

    I now must sell it because I’m moving to Hawaii and know I will never be able to wear it.

    Can you please give me a ballpark range of what it would be worth so I can sell it? Thank you.

  35. I just got my hands on my great-aunt’s Persian lamb swing coat. She was very short and I am almost 6′ but I love the fur AND the black sable mink collar!! So, I simply took it to a seamstress and had her removed the sleeves and make the armhole a bit larger and Voila! I have the most FABULOUS vest!! I’m saving the extra fun to make a jacket and use on the collar and cuffs! My aunt would be so thrill that I am “recycling” her coat!!

    I also have her 3/4″ white mink coat and don’t know what to do with that! Suggestions?

    • Colleen Millar says:

      I agree that redesigning a vintage coat is the way to go. I have been buying up coats for just this purpose. I am on the look-out for persian lamb, I have always used mink. I want to turn it into a designer bag and a vest like you have. Last week I took a purse that I had never used and added a mink flap and voila everyone is amazed the the look. I now want to start working with persian lamb. I am all about recycling old into new !!!

  36. Hi,

    I just got a vintage silver mink and lamb coat, it smells like foul perfume, like pertulo oil. How do I get that smell out. How would I get it appraised?

    • Hi Sharon,
      You emailed me directly already and maybe you didn’t get my reply, but your coat is faux fur and can be dry cleaned by any cleaner. To get an appraisal, please see “Ask a Worthologist” on this website.

      Take care,
      Sharon

  37. Carlon says:

    I have a Persian lamb hat that says jj steiner and sons ny is it authentic please let me know ASAP thank you!

  38. Fantastic guide, I found it to be very useful. Perhaps you have heard of fixazipper.org? They have a lot of of free tutorials on zipper repair and maintenance, the majority of them include videos also. I have serviced a number of zippers on my kids clothes using their free videos, you might want to chekc them out.

  39. Patricia says:

    Thank you for the your informative article. I just purchased my first (now I know) authentic Persian Lamb
    coat from an Estate sale. Its beautiful, but I had
    no idea if it was authentic, until reading your article.
    My final confirmation was when you mentioned the weight.
    I’ve never owned a coat this heavy! Thanks Again

  40. Terry O'Day says:

    I have an authentic Persian lamb coat with a grey mink collar that was purchased at N. L. Kaplan in Buffalo, New York thirty years ago. The owner died over twenty years ago. Her coat has been carefully preserved and is in mint condition. The lining is embossed with a floral pattern and her name embroidered in it.
    I would be willing to sell it at a good price.

  41. Yinka Awe says:

    How do I get an the musty smell out of my astrakhan coat?

  42. Yinka Awe says:

    I really love the coat, but it smells real bad. Thank you.

  43. Yinka says:

    Thank you

    • Yinka, only professional cleaning can remove a bad smell and then, some odors simply won’t ever come out. But to make it less noticeable, I hang the coat with a dryer sheet taped to the middle of the hanger, not touching the fur, but the nice fragrance does permeate the fur and mask the objectionable odor. It’s exchanging one smell for another, but frankly, I would prefer the fresh fragrance of a dryer sheet over a musty smell any day, wouldn’t you? If you can get a cotton (not plastic) garment bag and hang the coat in it, just place a couple of dryer sheets in the bottom, not touching the fur, and the fragrance should really get into the coat and make it nicer to wear (and nicer to sit next to for your companion!)

      Thanks for coming to Worthpoint!

  44. Nurraa Ali says:

    I have inherited my grandmother’s Persian Lamb coat and have kept it for more then thirty years it is in excellent condition. It has a mink silver collar and I am sure it is the real thing my grandmother had many furs. It is one size smaller then I am but I still can wear it and wore it twenty years ago to my mothers funeral. I have only taken it out of my attic once a year since then and found my self repairing some small areas of it with Black thread a few years ago. The label does say a Miracurl, however it is very heavy coat (weighs a ton)and I believe it is the real thing, I would like to know for sure before I have it professionally cleaned.

    • Hi Nurraa,
      From what I know to be true, Miracurl is a brand of faux fur. Even the name suggests that a synthetic fabric could quite miraculously be made to curl in such an authentic way, so as to appear almost real. I hate to say I know it all, because I don’t, but I am 99.9% sure that the coat is faux Persian Lamb. If you do the tests I mention in my article, especially checking between the curls under a good light, you can be sure. And do let me know what you find!

      Also, a person who wore fur a lot may have purchased a faux fur to wear when the weather was too wet for the real ones she loved so much. A faux fur coat is great for running around in the rain. Just a thought.

      Thanks for visiting Worthpoint!

  45. Genna says:

    Sharon -

    Thank you for all the great information.
    I am about to attempt a remake of my mother-in-law’s Persian lamb jacket. I’d like to convert it into a vest.

    Did you Feb 2011 experiments with home products result in any recommendations for cleaning or reconditioning our vintage pieces?

  46. Monica says:

    This is a very informative article! I read through the comments as well, and they are helpful.

    I do have a question myself.

    You say the coats are heavy. What would you estimate the weight of a short jacket to be approximately? I think I could tell in person, but I have been looking online a lot lately.

    I *love* vintage and have worn it for years. Beautiful, well-made things never go out of style.

    Many thanks!

  47. Nina says:

    I have a black and a brown Persian lamb coat from mother and grand mother. They are from Galvin Brennin Furriers in Boston. Are they real?

  48. carole says:

    Sharon, I have a Persian Lamb coat from the 50s that was my Mother’s. The skins are still very soft and pliable. The coat is 3/4 length, long sleeves and is beautiful. VERY heavy. I am wondering what the value of this could possibly be. Can you help me out?

  49. Lynn says:

    I have a Nathan Berman (Philadelphia Furrier) Cropped Shawl Collar that goes down to the bottom with slit pockets. It is so stylish and not old fashioned looking at all, and in great shape, the lining too. It smells like urine though – Any tips on how or where to have cleaned? Will the smell be go away ever?

  50. Lexi DeRock says:

    Great article. I was just discussing this with a friend of mine who purchased one of these coats for 10 bucks at a second hand shop and she was telling me she read online that it was possibly worth hundreds if not thousands. I did have to disagree though with those who would price it that high. Maybe it is based more on where we live (Paris) but these coats (the real ones) are dime a dozen here. I vintage and thrift a lot and come across at least one real one a week usually more and not one of them was over 100€…maybe it’s just supply and demand, but they really are not that rare. They were very popular for a very long time and there are still soooooo many of them out there that I don’t see how people could think they would be worth much.
    Plus fur (unless it has a designer label) is like a car, as soon as you drive it off the lot it loses so much of it’s initial value.
    That being said, love these coats and great guide to finding the real stuff vs fake :)

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