How did you come up with the name of your company?
Although my company is based in the United States, the designing phase takes place in Italy, where I spend most of my time nowadays. I wanted the name to reflect my Italian heritage and combine elements of strength and softness, traits of the women we design for. I boldly adopted the last name of one of the most discussed medieval Italian families, the Borgias, and added my mother’s first name to balance the fierceness of the Borgia name with the delicate simplicity that the name Anna evokes. I love how it sounds: Annaborgia.
What does “sustainable fashion” mean to you?
It means something that stands the test of time for quality and style while respecting the environment and adhering to a strict policy of non-violence to animals. At Annaborgia, we’re creating a conscious capsule collection of essential garments that will be timeless, easy to wear, travel-friendly, and totally comfortable.
What inspired you to start a sustainable fashion line?
Prior to launching Annaborgia, I worked as a wedding photographer for 15 years, mainly in California. During those years, I observed first-hand the unsustainable nature of wedding fashion. There are 2.2 million weddings every year in the United States alone. If you take an average of 4 bridesmaids per wedding, you get 8.8 million bridesmaid garments that are mostly never used again every year. This is definitely an unsustainable trend for the environment and people’s pockets. Also, as is universally well-known, most bridesmaid looks are unflattering and dated. Confronted with this reality, it was just irresistible for me to create a line of minimal, classic looks that are ceremony-friendly and easy to transition and style for other social and casual events. In addition, my vegan lifestyle prompted me to source cruelty-free, eco-friendly luxe textiles.
What is your company’s mission?
Although Annaborgia’s designs are not focused solely on bridal attire, we aim to disrupt the wedding fashion industry by presenting beautiful, sustainable alternatives to women that reject the wasteful practices of traditional weddings and who want to smartly re-wear their wedding outfit for years to come.
Do you have a 5 or 10-year vision for your company that you could share with us?
In the next 5 or 10 years, my vision for Annaborgia is to be a pioneer in the reinvention of wedding fashion. I want Annaborgia to be a sustainable wedding fashion company for the next generations. I also envision Annaborgia to be an established brand that contributes to a more conscious shopping attitude. I also hope to expand Annaborgia’s product range to include handbags and shoes, strictly vegan (and fabulous!) of course!
Who is your customer?
The Annaborgia customer is a trend-setter and a globe trotter. She is an indomitable, fearless, and considerate woman who takes great care of everything around her. She is a conscious shopper with fabulous style.
What is something you wish people knew about sustainable fashion?
Sustainable Fashion is slowly shaking off the stigma of being solely represented by cotton t-shirts. Stella McCartney is leading the way to show the world that it is possible to produce luxe garments without harming animals or the planet. At Annaborgia, we would love to see more sustainable fashion designers featured on the pages of mainstream fashion magazines.
What’s the most challenging thing about running a sustainable business?
Undoubtedly the production costs. Our textiles are processed without toxic dyes so they are a bit expensive to begin with. To support local businesses and fair trade practices, we produce locally in the San Francisco Bay Area. Keeping production local has the upside of allowing us maximum quality control standards.
Is there someone who inspires you and why?
Livia Firth, Safia Minney, and Orsola de Castro – all women that are committed to exposing the unethical practices of Fast Fashion by spreading their message of Fair Trade and Sustainability. These women are the voice of all of the unheard women who work in Asian sweatshops earning as little as $2.00 a day. As citizens of the world, we have a responsibility to live by good principles, so once you become aware of the poor principles that Fast Fashion operates under, you have a responsibility to take action and to not look away.
Other than your own, which sustainable fashion brands do you like?
I like Stella McCartney (of course), Vaute Couture, Reformation, MadeFair and Matt & Nat.
Is there anything else you’d like us to know about you or your company?
We recently switched our selling model from a traditional retail-based model to an exclusive online direct to customer model. By making this switch, we are able to avoid the extra costs associated with selling to retailers and channel those cost savings into making beautifully crafted apparel available for a palatable price tag. Check us out at www.annaborgia.com. Thank you!
Just For Fun
What’s your spirit animal?
definitely a bird
What’s your favorite lunch?
I don’t have a favorite, I love to experiment with food.
What’s your favorite color?
at the moment, white