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Friends pursue shared passion, develop T-shirt line in St. John's

Lauren Saunders (left) and Emily Evans run the SALT clothing company in St. John’s.
Lauren Saunders (left) and Emily Evans run the SALT clothing company in St. John’s.

Lauren Saunders and Emily Evans have been friends forever. The pair started making clothes for their Barbie dolls as children, and now they are business partners with the same love of fashion.

“We’ve always wanted to do something clothing related,” said Saunders. “Ever since we were kids.”

The women grew up together in Grand Falls-Windsor, but made their way to St. John’s for university.

“We used to talk about going to school for fashion design,” said Saunders. “But it never really turned out that way, and we settled into our own careers and lives.”

Over the next decade, the women began their separate careers, but their passion for fashion never faded.

“Both of us knew there was a little something missing in our lives,” said Evans. “It’s obvious you’re passionate about something when you still want to pursue it over a decade later.”

Evans has been involved with photography for eight years, but last year she started a 100-day project, under the salt philosophy.

“The salt philosophy for us is all about being genuine and natural,” said Evans.

“When you hear someone being referred to as ‘the salt of the earth,’ you automatically know they are good-natured people who are true to themselves,” said Saunders.

Evans’ 100-day project consisted of a photo shoot every day, no matter what was happening in her personal life.

“It really inspired me, and that’s sort of where the ‘Salt’ logo came to life,” said Evans.

The pair started printing their logos on plain white T-shirts in April, and they have been working flat out ever since.

Right now there are four different T-shirt styles.

“Our most popular style right now is definitely the comfy crew neck sweater,” said Saunders. “We knew from the minute we started we wanted to make a grey sweatshirt. We both used to live in old grey sweatshirts, so these are a lot nicer than they were.”

The logo is simple and it’s something the pair feels that anybody can wear and identify with.

“A lot of people who we never expected have come to buy shirts,” said Saunders. “It’s been one of the best parts.”

The pair told The Telegram that men and women of all ages and backgrounds have purchased T-shirts.

“One day a lady was here buying a shirt for her young daughter,” said Evans. “A few minutes later a guy in his 20s showed up on his motorcycle, full of tattoos, looking for one as well. It was the best.”

The shop, SALT, is located in St. John’s, where stock is kept and orders are filled.

“The grandmother who previously owned this space had it as a convenience store,” said Evans. “The family told me that it was always known as ‘the shop’ and asked if I would consider keeping the name alive. That’s why we are ‘The Shop, SALT.’”

The women have been keeping busy with pop-up shops, yoga in the park and networking as much as possible.

“For now, this is our side project,” said Evans. “But it’s definitely full-time work.”

Saunders and Evans say they have some big ideas coming up, including a couple of new items for the fall.

“The shop is pretty much where we spend all of our free time,” said Saunders. “We’re always thinking about what fun things we could do next.”

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