Elite Living Africa — Art of the Scarf

sarah grace london in elite living africa front cover and article

Designer Sarah Grace tells Elite Living Africa the story of how she was able to change her own destiny, turning her passion for art and fashion into a unique scarf business.

Words by Georgia Lewis

London designer Sarah Grace has parlayed her love of art and fashion into a luxury silk scarf business, appropriately named Sarah Grace London. Born and raised in London, she tells us about her path from the corporate world to high-end style, with her unique and artistic scarves.

What inspired you to use the marbling technique on your scarves?

My uncle lives in Japan and this gave me great exposure to the Asian culture. I found the art in Japan to be absolutely fascinating. The technique of marbling intrigued me. In Japan, this technique is called “suminagashi” or “floating ink”.

How did you master the suminagashi technique?

I studied interior and spatial design at Chelsea College of Art and design at University of the Arts London before I went travelling. During my travels, I’d thought I could combine my passion for clothes and fine art by designing wearable art. But I wanted to know how to transfer art onto silk scarves. I recalled the suminagashi technique from my time in Japan and, better still, I remembered it being used on silk. It was then that I knew this was the technique that I wanted to use. I researched the process of marbling, and worked out how to modify it with a modern twist.

How did you come to start your business?

I worked in luxury events and wedding planning, as well as finance, which was great experience, giving me an insight into business, but it was not going to be my long-term career. I could see there was a business opportunity in combining fashion and art, and if I wanted to follow my passion, it was up to me to learn about the business world, beyond what I’d already learnt as an employee.

Did you undertake any studies?

As well as working with British manufacturers and learning about fabrics, I took a course at Somerset House in London. This course helps people who dream of turning hobbies into businesses.

Tell us more about your brand and ambitions.

My brand is a British brand aimed at the luxury consumers worldwide. I feel privileged to be blessed with artistic talent and to be able to turn this talent into a business, so I want to give back to those less fortunate than myself in my local community. My company is supporting The Marylebone Project, which provides essential support to homeless women. For me, to see women wearing a luxury Sarah Grace scarf will be a dream come true. Then I’ll know that my business is a force for the good in the local community.

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