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Fashion: Here comes the fuzz...

Springtime: chicks are hatching, lambs are gambolling and the fashion set are shag-tastic. No, not in the way you may think. We're talking shaggy coats, darling – whether crinkly sheep, long-haired goat or full-on fur, it's set to be the cognoscenti's outerwear of choice.

Big, hairy coats have been fluffing around backstage for a while, at Sonia Rykiel this summer and Gareth Pugh last winter. Now they're hogging the limelight as a trend in their own right – and rightly so, as they don't half take up a lot of room.

But not everyone knows how to shag well: in this trend, more is more. Work from Kant's theory of accessory beauty: a sheep is beautiful because it is a sheep; a shaggy coat is beautiful because it in no way resembles its original purpose, so keep colours bright and as far from the farmyard as possible. Marios Schwab showed fizzy, jewel-like blues and corals, while Dolce & Gabbana's version came in a sizzling hot pink, like a love child of Barbie and Bigfoot.

But can brights be a bit too flashy? Pixie Geldof clearly thought so, when she wore a House of Holland shag recently, in muted slate grey, heather and black. The block stripes on the unruly wool are a satisfying imposition of order on nature, and control is important: you're wearing the coat, not it you. Otherwise, you run the risk of looking like last season's bestseller, the Christmas toy-chart topper and fuzzy cutie Elmo, from Sesame Street.