Fresh out with its fall collection and busy planning a fall cocktail party and fashion show to be held in San Francisco next week, Saffron Rare Threads is continuing to build on its rep as a Financial District haven for women seeking polished, professional, yet original apparel that’s made in San Francisco. We caught up with longtime local designer Priya Saraswati to discuss her label, inspired by the world’s most coveted spice.
Tell us about the fall collection photo shoot. Where was it shot and why did you choose the location? I wanted the San Francisco couple with a cute guy, very in love and very urban. When my photographer Billy Winters was previewing the collection, he saw the fabrics and decided on North Beach.
You’ve been designing your line since 2004. How has being in San Francisco helped develop the aesthetic of Saffon Rare Threads over the years? It has mostly influenced things like fabric choices or silhouettes. For example, we sold maxi dresses with sleeves this summer because there aren’t many opportunities here to wear a sun dress. Instead of doing long, wool coats, we’ll do a shorter, herringbone trench because it speaks more to our customer.
Speaking of your customer, how would you describe the Saffron Rare Threads woman? Our customer is (usually) a working professional woman, working moms, women who do not have a lot of time to go shopping. We have a personal relationship with our customers. Even on our buying trips, we have customers in mind. We’ll wonder about taking a chance on something and then list six customers off the top of our heads that would be into the style.
How has the brand changed and progressed over the years? When I first started out, I was doing really “matchy-matchy” suits and now that has turned into a cute pair of shorts and a matching vest that a girl will wear with tights, booties and a little chunky sweater. People are dressing more casually, and we have to accomodate that.
Any favorite pieces from the fall collection? The Eila dress is just a great piece. It’s a great print and will just work well on every body type. We carry sizes from XS to XL. I fit myself (an extra small), and we just go up from there. We want every customer to feel there is something here for them.
Want to see it for yourself? Stop by Saffron Rare Threads on Friday October 19th for the label’s fall cocktail party and fashion show. Check out the SF Indie Fashion Calendar for more info.
Photography by Billy Winters for Saffron Rare Threads
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