Sara, Silk & Squares: Introducing Squar'd Away
Square-wearer, Sara Harari-Buchnea is the creator of Squar'd Away. Originally from Canada, Sara has been a part of the art world for more than ten years. Using her eye for aesthetics, she began Squar'd Away to create simple objects that make people happy whenever they look at them or hold them in their hands. With its ability to soften a look or give it an edge, and countless ways it can be styled, reinterpreting the classic bandana became an endless source of fascination for Sara.
I had the opportunity to meet Sara at her women's work-space, The Wing. Sara is a warm, engaging gal and we became fast pals. While still fairly new to the scarf production biz, Sara has established herself through her beautiful designs and quality materials.
Scarves are the perfect travel accessory to complete a look. Not sure how to style it? Well, each one of Sara's squares comes with a poster with 20+ ways to wear your new square. These squares are your timeless accessory to carry you through years and trends.
How was Squar'd Away born?
The truth is I’ve been obsessed with bandanas and neck scarves for quite a while. They’re the perfect little accessory and have the ability to completely transform a look by either softening it or by adding an edge. I had been seeing them all over Brooklyn and realized there were barely any mid-range options between say, a cotton bandana from Levi’s and a super high-end scarf from Hermès.
I also had been looking for a way to continually give money towards Parkinson’s research. My dad has been living with the disease for over ten years so donating 20% of the proceeds of the sale of each square to the Michael J. Fox Foundation is my way of showing my love and support.
In a few words, how would you describe your business?
Squar’d Away is the classic bandana, reborn in pure silk, designed, handcrafted and packaged in New York.
So you're creating a bandana...what does that process look like?
I work with some amazing graphic designers who take my sketches/vision and make them a reality in the form of a digital file. The scarves are printed with American-made inks in lower Manhattan and then they make their way over to Brooklyn where they are individually cut out by hand and then sewn on hand operated sewing machines one at a time. Packaging/order fulfillment is also done out of Brooklyn.
Working locally with manufacturers in NYC allows me to be personally and closely involved in the production process. This helps me to create the product with a lot of TLC and bring my customers something I’m always proud of.
What's your favorite part about your job?
There are so many things I love about what I’m doing now that it’s hard to boil them down. I think my absolute favorite thing is making the donations to the Michael J. Fox Foundation. I can’t wait until the day that I’m consistently cutting them fat checks with tons of zeros.
Where do you find inspiration?
Anywhere and (literally) everywhere. Just being out and about here in Brooklyn and Manhattan provides inspiration for days. I also travel a lot and love seeing the way different trends are interpreted in other big cities. Then there are those places that are just magical and shift my perspective through their crafts, food and overall aesthetic.
Any advice for creatives just starting out?
TRUST YOUR GUT. No matter what. Being able to tap into your gut feeling when making decisions or being in certain situations is like developing a super power. Go with it. Feel good about everything you do or it will come back to haunt you.
Favorite spots in NYC?
I’m currently living out my life at The Wing (women’s only co-working space) and can’t remember how I did it before this place opened.
I’m (not so) secretly obsessed with the period rooms at the Metropolitan Museum as well as the Renaissance Art galleries. The Frick Collection is also always a beautiful escape from the craziness of the city when I need one and the best part is my inner art history nerd can run free.
I could eat at Giuseppina’s in Greenwood every night; it’s the best pizza I’ve ever had. There, I said it.