When Barcelona-born, New York–based clothing designer Stefania Borras was deciding what to name her line, she turned to the evocative power of scent for inspiration. Particularly, the scent of the datura flower, a deadly deliriant with a honey-like fragrance that Borras feels adroitly captures the essence of the women she makes clothes for: mysterious, elegant, and complicated.
The sartorial shorthand for the kind of clothing Borras crafts is “basics”—minimalistic separates with simple silhouettes. Yet “basic” these are not; rather, Datura offers wardrobe staples elevated by their very fine materials: immutably lustrous cashmere, wool, mohair, crêpe de chine, charmeuse, and georgette. “Rich natural fibers are my favorite,” Borras explains. “I love the feel and touch of a high-end fabric, and so I wanted to continue upgrading the quality of my cloth while keeping the product at an affordable price point.” To do so, Borras has kept her business online-only, providing clothing priced to reflect its quality alone, sans unfriendly brick-and-mortar boutique markups. “We source our fabrics from traditional mills, and we manufacture locally. Right now we have made the last four collections here in Manhattan. The process is much more controlled that way,” she continues. “My customers are women who love clothes, who look at the label before buying because they have an appreciation for good materials and care about transparency and sustainability in how clothing is manufactured.”
As a result of such careful detail-orientation, each one of Datura’s pieces is a treasure it its own right, from jewel-toned velvet tops to Russian-red silk dresses, and belted kimono coats to lush mohair sweaters, all in pitch-perfect colours like forest green and candy-rose pink. “Our customers are intelligent, strong, opinionated, busy, working women,” says Borras. In Datura, they find substance and style alike.