With workplace trends changing (bye, bye staid suit) Elenor Mak, 33, found it hard to find the time to shop—let alone look professional and trendy. After catching up with her old friend, Cheryl Han, 31, at a Harvard Business School alumni mixer, the women realized there was an opportunity to connect women who were sartorially savvy with those who just needed someone to tell them what to wear. By December 2012, Keaton Row, a free personal styling site, was doing just that.
Why is there a need for a site like Keaton Row?Cheryl: We’re empowering two groups of women. We’re not only giving that busy woman the luxury and personalization of a personal stylist but we’re also giving women who’ve been a “stylist” in their own social networks an opportunity to become an actual stylist. They come to us, they launch their own business, they build their own client base, and we help them market and run it.
Who is your style muse?Elenor: It’s really our Keaton Row stylists. They’re real life people and they know your budget, your body type. They know how to make it work for all of us.
What item of clothing are you planning on splurging on this season?Elenor: A Rag & Bone leather combination jacket. It’s a beautiful olive color, which I love.Cheryl: Philip Lim’s Pashli Satchel in Cobalt. I tend to always do black when it’s an investment piece, but I’m getting out of my comfort zone.
What are your workday and weekend uniforms?Cheryl: I’ve been really into shorts this season. I have a pair of Theory leather shorts like these that I love and a pair of Rebecca Minkoff printed shorts. I have these Topshop embroidered shorts that are amazing. I just bought a pair of J Brand rolled-up cropped distressed jeans. I love wearing them with flats and a James t–shirt on the weekend.Elenor: The whole concept of desk to dinner really appeals to me. I’ve invested in four Splendid racerback tank dresses and I wear at least one a week. They’re soft and casual but you can pair them with a really nice blazer and a pair of high pumps. On the weekend, I usually wear a pair of J Brand cigarette jeans with a t-shirt or sweater and a pair of boots. I love Michael Kors boots. I have several pairs.
You feel most creative when you're wearing…Elenor: This vintage pleated, mid-length skirt that my mom made when she was in her 20s. My mom is a big fashion influence for me, so when I wear that skirt I feel pretty inspired.Cheryl: A pair of Clover Canyon printed pants like this pair. The first time I wore them I was nervous, but now when I wear the pants I feel super-empowered and creative. I almost feel like I could be a stylist myself.
Plus, Cheryl and Elenor share their style essentials with us! See their must-haves.