Behind Annaborgia’s name

On this International Women’s Day I feel like sharing a personal story.
Today is certainly a day of celebration, but honoring women and their great impact and influence on my past and present it’s really a daily practice for me.

Growing up in Italy, I was surrounded by a diversity of strong female personalities. My grandmother and some of my aunts had no trouble speaking their minds against the old fashion Italian males. My mother, on the contrary was quite a submissive and gentle soul. She took more then I could have born and to this day, the reason is still a mystery to me.

So I guess that’s why my instinct drew me to idolize female characters from movies and books with vivacious and fearless personalities. As a young girl I would have been happy to trade places with Pippi Longstockings, the indomitable independent kid that lived with a horse, a monkey and a constant smile on her face. In my teenage years, I was inspired by the unconventional Jo from Alcott’s Little Women, and actress Katharine Hepburn and the defiant tempered women she portrayed in her movies and ultimately, she became my inspiration behind my first Annaborgia designs.

These figures surely influenced my free spirited personality today. Or perhaps I am trying to be the person my mom would have wanted to be but didn’t or couldn’t reach out to be. She died too young for me to find out.

My mother never had a chance to see me flourish as an artist, first as a photographer, now as an emerging designer… she departed this world when I was just 21. There will always be this wonder, this missing piece in my life.  What would she think of the woman I have become?

My way of honoring her in my journey today, is by giving my brand her sweet name: Anna. For all those dresses she sew for me and my sister, pampering us like precious dolls. I can’t help but wonder where her talent would have taken her if only she had the chance.

You used to tell me you would have liked to travel sweet Anna… By now, I hope your spirit has visited all those places you’d dreamt of, and once in a while, you’ve come to rest on my shoulder patting it gently with pride.



Cover Photo by Volkan Olmez 

2 replies on “Behind Annaborgia’s name

  • Jennifer Nini

    Thank you for sharing this personal story Daniela. I was wondering what was behind your brand name 🙂

    I identify with so much of what you have written (I also followed those fictional characters!). My mother has similar traits and in my teens I judged her (too harshly when I look back at it) for not putting her foot down, for being a “door mat” for not being assertive enough.

    I realise now that we have grown up differently, have different partners, have different situations and perhaps my mother has become the sum of her experiences. When she tells me about what she was like before she had a family, I can see the same independent streak I have. It’s funny how life changes you. But now that I am older and getting to know my mum as a human being and not just as my mum, I can see that underneath it all she has a strength that I didn’t know existed when I was growing up.

    I am truly grateful that I still have the chance to get to know my mum now as an adult. She is a remarkable woman. As I’m sure your mum was too. I’m sure she would have been very proud of the women you have become 🙂

    Jennifer Nini

    • Daniela

      Dear Jennifer, thank you so much for reaching out! Becoming adults it’s definitely an humbling experience. We think we know it all in our teens but there are so many nuances we have yet to grasp. I am glad you have the chance to live a fulfilling relationship with you mom, it certainly is something to treasure!


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