L'Officiel Hommes USA
THE FASHION FURRIER
LYSA LASH FINDS THE PERFECT FUR FOR THE CONSCIOUS FASHIONISTA.
Lysa Lash has fur in her blood. Well, not literally, but almost: Lash is a fourth generation furrier from Montreal. With only basic experience in the fur industry as a cutter of pelts, Lash’s great-greatgrandfather boarded a boat to Canada. Freezing in the biting cold, Samuel Grossman announced to the questioning immigration officers that he had (very limited) experience in the fur industry. What became Samuel Grossman Furs was passed down through the family and in the 1960s, Lash’s grandfather made a name for himself in the fashion world as a top furrier not only through his skill and fashion sense, but also for his trustworthy personality.
Samuel Grossman Furs is no more, but Lash hasn’t turned her back on the legacy her grandfather cultivated. Lysa Lash Furs represents a modern approach to a historical practice. She’s maintained relationships from her grandfather’s time and values the same high-quality work, but Lash has adapted the furrier business for the more casual modern woman. She sells contemporary pieces— which she’s recently started to design herself—at private trunk shows. These events are invite-only, held at what Lash likes to call “sexy addresses.”
Lash isn’t oblivious to the realities of being a furrier in the budding age of earth-consciousness. The exclusive nature of her business serves a dual purpose: it’s meant to create a low-key and comfortable VIP experience, but it also means protection. She makes sure no activist can get their bucket full of red paint close enough to cause damage.
Today, animal rights and sustainability are on everyone’s mind, making the issue of fur more divisive than ever. Many consumers and fashion brands alike are turning their backs on leather and fur in favor of faux alternatives. Of course, the fur industry is not without (furry) casualties, but like most other furriers in North America, Lash finds her furs from trusted sources that comply with regulations set by both Canada and the United States that ensure the most ethical production of fur.
Synthetic fur alternatives are often made from petroleum-based plastics or acrylic polymers, meaning faux fur that is thrown away can take
hundreds, if not thousands of years to biodegrade. Fur—although very durable and often treated to preserve its quality—is a natural material. With unshakeable confidence, Lash stands by the fact that “fur is the most sustainable product in the world,” and immediately offers several documents to back up her claim.
Over champagne and conversation, Lash works personally to match the best piece with each client. This is where she wants to distance herself from other, more traditional furriers. Lash isn’t concerned with the sale—lysa Lash Furs has turned down invitations from the likes of Barney’s and Bergdorf’s. Every woman at the trunk show is encouraged to try on every piece, so that the “right piece ends up on the right person.” Lash wants to find each person a fur they will love forever, because “that is sustainable fashion.”