Frances Francis designs clothing for women that have the look of fit without being fitted. Frances has been designing clothes since she was a young girl. Designing and sewing runs in her family. Frances' great aunts had a prominent tailoring shop on Newbury Street in Boston. Family stories told of them shopping in Paris for new designs and fabrics. Aunt Eleanor proudly remembers the dresses they made for her dances.
Her own path to clothing design took years of hard work. It was 1980 when Frances fell in love with weaving which led her to begin classes at Massachusetts College of Art and a duel major in textiles and fashion design. After completing her degree she began showing her hand woven clothing line at American Craft Shows. In 1990 she applied to a newly developed graduate program at The Rhode Island School of Design (RISD) and earned her Master’s Degree in Textile Design. After designing sweaters in the New York and Boston areas Frances' love of Cape Cod drew her back to the area. A wholesale company was started in Eastham and she participated in shows around the country to grow her new business. Frances reconnected with a Korean friend that she met while interning who had started up her own sewing factory and became one of her clients. Shortly after Frances hired local Cape and Fall River women to make her clothing that was sold to boutiques around the country for twelve years.
In 2003 Frances opened her first boutique in a rustic barn in Wellfleet and followed with a second in Orleans. “This store is open with light from 4 big windows, is has the feel of a French salon to me,” she says. Frances produces two “lifestyle lines” a season, both of which are adaptable to relaxed special occasions, the work place and a casual lifestyle. Frances’s success is in large part due to her perseverance in following her passion. “My designs incorporate the unity of form, color and fabric that harmonize with the body; the cut of these clothes provide a sizing that fits a variety of body types,” concludes Frances.