Rustic Thread Boutique brings boho-hip fashion to Denver

Now that spring has arrived, the fashion faithful have a bouquet of shopping options to help with the transition out of winter sweaters. If you are looking for unique, boho-hip, stylish designs to add to your spring wardrobe, head to the Rustic Thread Boutique in Highland. We recently chatted with Sarah Markway about the boutique and its brand-new partnership with RVCA (pronounced: roo-kah).

See also: Nine best fashion events for April

Westword: Sarah, tell us about yourself. Where are you from?

Sarah Markway: I'm originally from Chicago, but my husband and I moved here two and a half years ago from L.A., where I spent a great portion of my career. I'm an outdoor girl who loves to ski and camp, but loves to do it in style!

When did you first discover your love for fashion and how did you get into the business of fashion?

I have had a passion for fashion since I was little; dressing up in my mother's closet was a norm. I look at fashion as an art form -- how you style yourself and how you dress reflects who you are and what your personality is. We are what we wear!

I have been in the industry since I could start working and have worked for different mass retailers throughout my career in various outlets of either styling, buying or managing multi-store functions. I was beginning to feel bit disconnected, though, in my corporate life, as I missed the customer connection. This was a main reason I decided to leave corporate retail and open up my own.

What is your take on the state of fashion in Denver?

I think fashion in Denver is on the cusp of being competitive with other markets. Since opening Rustic Thread six months ago, I have seen my customers go from more conservative to more adventurous in taking risks on mixing patterns or trying new layering styles. I think Denver has great fashion -- it just needs to continue to evolve and grow. There is a fashion story to be told in Denver, and I want to be a part of helping that story coming alive.

Tell us about Rustic Thread. What was your inspiration for opening the boutique and how did you decide on the name?

When I moved here, I researched Denver boutiques and only a few popped up on the radar. Most major cities have "boutique" shopping areas or niches throughout the city -- Denver was a little more spread out and I wanted to help grow this niche in Denver. There are great boutiques in Denver and I wanted to be able to add to this collection of eclectic shopping with a West Coast edge. I knew I liked the word "thread" because it's how the fashion industry all starts: by a thread woven into a new piece. '"Rustic" is my personal style -- I'm a bit of a classic boho style, and love all things that have a bit of a rustic edge or vibe.

Who are some of the designers that shoppers will find when they shop at Rustic Thread?

Most of my lines come from L.A. or San Fran designers, and I like mixing this with local accessory designers. Some of my favorite brands right now are RVCA, Lani, Cotton &Candy and LoveMarks. I carry over twenty different brands and continuously get new shipments in with new brands. I love the hunt to find untapped brands that are just starting off or that you will not find anywhere else in Denver.

This week you will be hosting a trunk show launching a new partnership with RVCA (pronounced: roo-kuh)?

Yes, RVCA has been one of my favorite West Coast brands and they recently revamped their women's line. The April 4 launch party is my first collection I will receive from them, and I am so excited to share this brand with our shoppers. RVCA will also be doing free giveaways, as well as a drawing to win a full RVCA outfit from head to toe: "RVCA is built upon the balance of opposites: order, chaos...past, present...light, dark. The RVCA girl is no different. She's inspired by street culture as much as the runway. She's simply complicated, quietly vibrant and beautifully unrefined."

What trends can we expect to see from RVCA?

You will see a lot of great rich color from RVCA: rust and deep olive greens stood out to me, as well as great back detail of tops, sweaters, and dresses. We are carrying a small start to their summer collection, so expect to see really cute maxi dresses with great back detail, high-waisted chambray skirts paired back with one of their vintage tanks, summer swing dresses and great layering pieces as well.

Why should fashion-savvy shoppers put Rustic Thread on their "must shop" list?

We believe in helping women find great pieces to add to collections they already have at home -- and at an affordable price. We want you to find one-of-a-kind styles that fit your personal style, whether it is a classic or trend-forward style. I believe in creating a great environment for shoppers: Chat it up with our great in-store talent that has knowledge on product and how to style, and ensure you are walking out with great pieces that will become staples in your wardrobe. The RVCA Trunk Show runs from 5 to 8 p.m. on Friday, April 4 at Rustic Thread Boutique, 3716 West 32nd Avenue.

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Tracie Keesee