Fashion Hall of Obscurity – Sara Fredericks

Rose print silk taffeta balloon skirt dress with ‘Intermission’ hemline, c. 1956 – 1958, labelled Sara Fredericks

Sara Fredericks was born in Boston in 1903. While married to Frederick Cohen, who was in the shoe business, she opened a small dress shop on Newbury Street in Boston in 1934. After divorcing Cohen she married Harold Rudnick, a real-estate developer. Relocating most the year to Palm Beach in Florida, Sara Fredericks took the opportunity to open a luxury clothing salon there. By the 1950s Fredericks was travelling to Europe twice a year, as well as New York and California, to buy her stock. She also hired designers, including Richard Tam and Ferdinand Sarmi, to create clothes under the Sara Fredericks label.

Her salon was a success and more branches opened, often in high end hotels of wealthy resort towns, including seasonal outlets for where the wealthy summered. In 1967 Fredericks opened her tenth shop on 57th street in New York but in 1973 the company filed for Chapter 11 protection. The ‘over 30’ socialites which had been the focus customer of Sara Fredericks were disappearing. The company successfully reorganized and re-emerged. Fredericks sold her Salon Shops in 1983 but remained president until her death in 1986. The company closed in 1993.

2 thoughts on “Fashion Hall of Obscurity – Sara Fredericks

  1. A small correction to your article entitled “Fashion Hall of Obscurity – Sara Fredericks”…

    You state “After divorcing Cohen she married Harold Rudnick, a real-estate agent.”

    Harold Rudnick was never a real-estate agent. Rather, he was a prominent Boston commercial real-estate developer.

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