Capsule Wardrobe / Inspiration / Style

The SF Stylist | Caroline Rooney


It’s been so fun to highlight women whose Style + Grace inspires us!

Last month we featured Krystal Bick and today I’m excited to introduce my talented friend Caroline – a San Francisco Stylist and just plain delightful human being.



Photos c/o Emily Scott

” As a stylist, I specialize in menswear. That means I spend most of my days working with male clients, in male dominated menswear shops, tailoring shops and department stores. It’s important to me to dress in a way that looks pulled together, on-trend, and also in line aesthetically with the look I recommend for my clients. Often times, when I first meeting clients and associates, there’s a certain doubt about my experience in menswear, both because of my age, and because I’m a woman.

“It’s my job to immediately debunk that by presenting myself (and my business) as professional, experienced, and knowledgeable of trends, design, and construction.”

– Caroline

 “My aesthetic centers around elevated basics – the idea that honing your personal style starts with a wardrobe of well-fitting, quality, timeless basics, then you layer in the fun stuff such as more personal or trendy pieces. I want to be consistent in my personal life with the aesthetic that I’ve built my business around.

“For my own closet, I only buy pieces that fall into one of two categories: “I could wear this everyday and feel pulled together” basics, and “I love this so much, it’s terribly unique, and I absolutely have to have this” fun pieces.

“My recent acquisitions? A camel Ralph Lauren car coat for my basics, and a very loud, very fun (and very fabulous) sequin pencil skirt that I bought in Paris during Fashion Week.”

“For basics, I gravitate towards brands like Paige Denim, Amour Vert, Vince, Theory, and Dion Lee. For wow pieces, I purchase unique items when I’m traveling, pepper in vintage pieces, and bring in pops of color in my shoes and handbags. For accessories, I love red – a red shoe or handbag makes a bold but classic statement. Right now I alternate between my red repetto flats from Hero Shop and my red ankle tie heels from Schutz.

“I chose to specialize in menswear because the market is focused on basics, impeccable tailoring and fit, and nuanced design details on basic silhouttes. In San Francisco, I encourage my clients to invest in good quality sweaters, well fitting shirts, high quality t-shirts, slim fitting trousers and chinos, and a really dark, classic pair of slim cut denim.

“Those are also pieces I invest in – with pieces like these you can essentially create a “uniform” to look pulled together and polished every day.”

” This is my confident, pulled together, “I’m the expert” look. When I’m working with a client I want to feel polished, and like I’m on my game.

“My job requires answering a lot of nuanced questions, being put on the spot about how or why something fits the way it does, while playing therapist to my client’s insecurities and concerns. I’m also required to be knowledgeable, relevant, engaged, and quick on my feet.”

“I love these jeans from Talley. They’re the absolute favorite jeans I’ve ever owned, and I recommend them to anyone who will listen. They’re higher waisted, and skinny without being painted on. I want to look elegant and pulled together — not sexy or exposed — so I prefer pieces that flatter my shape, are a bit longer (I don’t want to show my stomach when I’m reaching on a clothing rack or helping fit a jacket on a 6’5″ athlete!)”

“I am always on the hunt for the perfect white blouse. I think a crisp, white, silk, t-shirt style blouse is the most important basic in my wardrobe. This one is from a brand that I buy in Mexico City called Bimba y Lola. They’re a Spanish brand that we don’t have in the US – I go nuts for it when I’m visiting my in-laws.

“This jacket is a favorite because it’s menswear inspired, and helps me feel professional, without feeling stuffy. I bought it from a vintage store when I left New York, and I still wear it at least once a week. My friend Emily Meyer makes the coolest menswear inspired pieces for women, and I like to think this jacket gives off that same cool, classic, yet laid back, vibe.”

“Wearing heels makes me feel professional, but I also need something comfortable. These suede boots were one of my first purchases when I moved from New York. The cut and the suede makes them feel very California to me, and I like that they aren’t too serious or sleek. I want my outfit to say, “I’m in charge”, without being intimidating.

“The details: I like simple jewelry. I wear my wedding and engagement bands, a band I bought myself as a gift when I first launched my company, and my vintage Cartier tank every day. I feel naked without them, but I prefer to stop there, unless I’m wearing bold earrings for an event.”

“I do love pocket squares – I think wearing one shows you care, and took an extra effort to really polish your personal appearance. This one is a vintage handkerchief. The bag is a tote from the company I started with my husband called Shop Padrisimo. We import local craft items from the cities we visit on our travels, but have a soft spot for items from Mexico City and surrounding areas. My husband grew up in Mexico City, and most of our family lives there so we try to support the design and rich maker community that is so prevalent there.”

1 comment on “The SF Stylist | Caroline Rooney”

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *