We had the good fortune of connecting with Anna Tagliabue and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Anna, what matters most to you?
I consider my best achievements in life, my personal accomplishments as a human being. Through internal growth, open mindedness, awareness and always searching for deeper layers, through meditation and the purity of a higher consciousness. Awakened conscious. And not let the ego prevail. That’s why I feel so close to the animal cause, started a #ReFAUXlution, became an animal rights activist and a vegan. Because of the nature of my business and as a new fashion designer I felt it was my obligation and responsibility to understand what was behind the fur industry and fashion in general. What I’ve found was and still is abhorrent, cruel and unjust. This is why I pledged to use high end luxury fashion as a means to spread awareness, open people’s hearts, reconnect them to the animals and nature and encourage them to reject all exploitation and injustice of non human animals and human animals alike. I use activism through fashion while promoting veganism as the moral imperative of our time. A cruelty free lifestyle that is beautiful, luxurious and glamorous with dignity and integrity. Fashion in Action for moral progress.
Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
I feel proud of what I achieved so far. I created a real brand with a strong product, philosophy and mission statement from nothing. I’ve been searching for this kind of high quality luxury faux fur product for 20 years, but never found it anywhere; so I decided to create it myself. Coming from a serious luxury fashion background, having worked for and learned from two of the most influential fashion houses — Fendi and Prada — the Pelush DNA is dynamically influenced by both fashion houses, combined with my personal sensibilities to elegance, luxury, glamour, tradition, innovation, and the social/animal rights agenda; Pelush redefines fashion in the twenty-first century cruelty free future. There were many bumps, trial and errors along the way. It took a long time to find the perfect pattern maker and I struggled to find the right person who could make the product look spectacular from the inside out. It was a frustrating and expensive process. Eventually, after 5 different companies I found Pelush’s perfect match, a small atelier in New York City, and made the first capsule collection. Making mistakes is useful. In the beginning I was using silk for the coat linings and included some mohair coats in 3 colors. One day, Peta explained to me what/who was behind the wool, leather, feather and silk industries and I was completely shocked. I fully immersed myself in learning more and found myself in a vortex of horrors of unimaginable cruelty done to animals for fashion, food, sports, entertainment and experiments. After watching some life changing documentaries like Earthlings, Cowspiracy, What the Health etc, I discovered Ed Winters (@Earthlinged) and became vegan immediately. At that point I refused to take any part of so much suffering and exploitation, so after one year that I was in business, I started the company all over again and relaunch Pelush as a vegan cruelty free brand with my first runway show during NY Fashion Week. Compassion is fashion, but the fight is not over yet.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
Because of Covid-19 Manhattan is not as dynamic and fun as it used to be. Several restaurants, hotels and stores have closed. I would take my friends to all my favorite vegan restaurants in the city like Vegan Jean George (ABCV) inside ABC carpet and home, which is also a fabulous store. Delice & Sarrasin in the West Village, all Matthew Kenney vegan restaurants, Ladybird and so many others. Bergdorf Goodman store on 5th Ave is always a must and I like the Restoration Hardware store in the meat packing district and the restaurant upstairs has some nice vegan dishes. I liked to go to fancy bars inside hotels as well but life has changed now.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
So many people inspired me for change like my husband, who gave me the possibility to start the business, Peta who taught me about the wool, leather, feather and silk industries and Ed Winters (@Earthlinged), my hero and idol who is the most inspirational and compassionate human being on the planet, that helped me go vegan and stay vegan for life. But ultimately it’s always up to us to take action. The outcome is in our hands. We are in control of our fate, as we’re writing the future for the next generations to come and a new chapter in our history. Each of us is a player of our own destiny and every player is a transfer of energy for the receiver. The choices we make every single day have a direct repercussion on humanity’s fate and the planet. We must choose wisely, with kindness and compassion for all living beings that share this planet with us. Only love remains at the end.
The photo of the runway show credit HiTecMODA. The rest are mine.