Fur Futures member Chloe Corrillon is a recent graduate from Haute Ecole Francisco Ferrer in Brussels, Belgium. After graduating, Chloe attended a fur workshop program in Centria University, Finland where she learnt new crafting skills and enhanced her interest in fur. Chloe therefore joined our Fur Futures program in which we granted her the chance to learn first hand skills at furrier Rebecca Bradley London for a short internship.
Below Chloe talks about her time at the London furrier.
During my study I had the opportunity to participate to a discovering fur workshop program in Centria University, Finland. I have always been interested in learning new crafting skills and the craftsmanship of fur really got me curious to learn more.
Which is why after graduating I have had the chance to intern at Rebecca Bradley London, a furrier studio from January until the end of March. I read about them on the IFF website « skills and careers » page. The brand is relatively known in London for their repair, remodel, and bespoke clothing and accessories services but also has its own products collections. When I first got there, I was impressed by all the different fur garments and skins that were in the studio. I expanded my knowledge of fur types but there is still a lot I don’t know about. I also learned how to take proper care of the skins and fur items.
At the beginning of my internship I was mostly helping them with their repairs and remodels which was a way to introduce me to different hand sewing techniques. It was really interesting to see the insides of the fur coats and the different construction techniques used to make them. The extra fur of the coats that had been shortened was sometimes used to make new accessories. I have learnt how to make multiple pompom key rings and earmuffs sewn by hand.
To practice cutting with the blade and sewing on the fur machine I had a huge bag given to me filled with lots of different bits of fur to play with in order to make something out of it. The first one I assembled stripes and we turned it into a scarf by closing it and adding an hook and eye. The second one I did was a bit more elaborated as I did a double sided fur scarf with stripes and checks techniques.
An other thing I have been doing is making teddy bears. It was a good way to see where to place the patterns on the skins so that the hair direction and length are symmetrical. I have made a couple of them with different fur types and I have realised that some are more difficult than others to sew on the machine.
Although this internship was not very long It was very interesting as I feel like I have seen and learned a lot. I want to keep on discovering new things and learning more about the fur trade. As I previously worked only with fabrics during my studies and if i had to compare, I would say that working with fur is not more or less complex than working with fabrics. It is just two completely different crafts and industries which works well on their own but combined together as well.
For the future I am not picturing myself as a full time furrier as I miss working with fabrics. I guess working for a brand that works with both fur and fabric would be a good path for me.
I am grateful to IFF for helping me finance this opportunity I had, as well as to the Rebecca Bradley London team for having me and sharing their knowledge and skills.
To find out more on Fur Futures, please visit: https://www.wearefur.com/skills-careers/fur-futures/