Call it highway couture: Fur fashion products made from roadkill

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The company's website says Petit Mort Fur is operating on a "cruelty-free" philosophy:

Petite Mort Fur's mission is to shift the $35 Billion fur industry built on the lives of 50 million caged and trapped animals every year to a paradigm of compassion, sensibility, and freedom by respectfully resurrecting 365 million wild animals killed on our roads every year, which are currently thrown away. Petite Mort Fur clients can stay warm and fabulous knowing they've made a compassionate and informed choice.

Company founder Pamela Paquin said she gets the pelts from dead animals but she’s picky about what she uses. She said she doesn’t take the animals that have been flattened.

"But the ones in the break-down lane that look like they're asleep are often salvageable," she said in an interview with

Paquin said she gathers the carcasses either on her own or with a cousin; she also works with highway departments and animal control officers to find them. You have to be licensed to gather roadkill in Massachusetts.

The individual pieces cost between $1,000 and $5,000 because of the intensive labor, Paquin said.

But there are also novelty accessories like fur earrings for much less on the company's Esty site.