Peruvian Connection, founded by Annie Hurlbut Zander will unveil its Holiday collection at a private event on November 7th in Manhattan. The brand, which Hurlburt started after a life changing trip to Peru more than 40 years ago, has grown to become a reference for shoppers of sustainable and luxury clothing.
While there researching anthropology, Annie fell in love with the extraordinary hand-woven mantas and ponchos that she discovered in the markets of Cuzco. Fascinated by these ethnographic textiles, she began learning everything she could about the spinning and dyeing of the alpaca fibers, the warp-faced weaving techniques and the ancient textile traditions of the Andes. Before she left Peru, she bought a sweater for her mother’s 50th birthday to take back to the farm in Kansas. Her mother adored the sweater, and her friends did too. So much so that they recognized an opportunity not only to bring artisan-crafted garments to the US market but help to sustain the Andean communities and natural environment which underlie Peru’s extraordinary textile tradition. From there Peruvian Connection was born.
For more than 40 years, Peruvian Connection has worked with small, women-owned, cottage knitting industries in the Andes. Over time, they have evolved and flourished along with Peruvian Connection with many now being run by the daughters and granddaughters of the original owners. There is a strong loyalty between Peruvian Connection and its knitters. They rely on Peruvian Connection season after season, decade after decade. Their shared passion for exceptional quality and small batch production has yielded collections that grow ever more sophisticated with every season.
Each piece is a celebration of ethnographic textiles from around the world, made by skilled Andean artisans whose art form will continue to be a time-honored tradition with Peruvian Connection. Alpaca and pima cotton remain the constant threads throughout each collection, as the company continues to support and preserve the most luxurious Peruvian fibers.
The alpaca is perhaps the most ecologically friendly luxury fiber producing animal. Unlike the sharp hooves of cashmere goats, the soft padded feet and gentle grazing habits of alpacas do minimal damage to the altiplano it inhabits. Alpacas provide the foundation for the livelihood of approximately 50,000 herding families in the Andes.
Today, Peruvian Connection has grown into an internationally renowned brand for luxury Peruvian textiles and fibers. Since the first alpaca sweater, the original vision remains: to offer artisan-made designs in indigenous Andean luxury fibers. In 2016, Peruvian Connection was named the First Ambassador of Alpaca in the US by Alpaca del Perú, the organization representing the finest grades of alpaca in the world.