I’ve been a fan of Mary Gonsalves Kinney ever since I first featured her as part of my “Closet Case” series. She’s got mad style, and seriously lives and breathes fashion. As a professional stylist and the editor and co-founder of Sister | Brother Style, Mary has her fingers on the pulse of all that is fashionable.
I met up with Mary last night at Julius Clothing as she was wrapping up fittings for an exciting event she’s putting on this Thursday—Fashion’s Night Out (FNO) at Pavilions, a runway event benefiting the UC Davis Children’s Hospital. The event promises shopping, gourmet food trucks, cocktails, a hip-hop performance, entertainment by DJ Dave Carvalho and, of course, a spectacular runway show featuring some of Sacramento’s most fashion-forward people as well as local celebrities. Admission is free and the event runs from 6:00 – 11:00 p.m., with the runway show kicking off at 8:00 p.m. You won’t want to miss this event. Seriously.
In the mean time, read below for more about what it means to be a stylist, what we can all expect from fall fashions and how you can be deemed “fierce” by this style goddess.
For more information, visit the FNO event page on Facebook.
How did you get started as a stylist?
It all happened rather organically. I have always been fashion obsessed—since I was a child. I would literally stay up late at night putting “looks” together. It got worse as I got older and well, then I started getting requests from friends and friends of friends to “dress” them for special events. Once I made a habit of this, people started encouraging me to make a business out of it and so I did. The rest is history!
How do you define great style?
Style is all about confidence. I don’t care if you’re wearing a paper sack, if you have the bravado and the swagger to pull it off, you’re going to look like a million bucks. Piecing together low end with high end and everything in between is a skill…not everyone has it. Some think labels are the way to go and trust me, I like my finer things, but a healthy mix is always better. I see style as an art. It’s purely subjective. Regardless of whether your boho or hipster or goth, if you have an aura about you, I’m going to think you’re fierce.
What fall trends are you excited about?
I’m all about gloves with fur trim and argyle socks this fall. I also love the ankle boot. Leather mixed with denim and jeans with velvet appliqué—so many amazing and wearable trends coming, I can’t even take it.
What current trend, if any, do you think we will see fall out of style?
I think neon is going to take a back seat. It’s been around for some time. I think we’ll see more of navy, cream black and gray (my favorites)—nail colors, makeup, etc. are darker and richer.
What has been the highlight of your styling career thus far?
I have been so blessed. I really can’t pinpoint one particular experience. I’ve worked with so many amazing fashion companies and my latest 14-page spread with Sacramento Magazine was really quite an outstanding experience. I’m going to New York in November and I’m launching my second fashion styling and branding company alongside partner, Lauri Levenfeld, this month. It’s called the StyleArmy. I have a feeling that will be pretty amazing.
Have any tips on how we can all look fabulous everyday?
Put a little makeup on and do your hair. It’s not hard. Try to do one of those things everyday regardless of what you’re doing. Even if you’re going to the gym, wear a cool pair of sneakers or a vintage tank top and some funky pants. Always try and turn it up a notch…never be complacent with your look. Never settle.
This is the second year you’re organizing FNO at Pavillions. How did you get started with this event?
Sister | Brother Style did Fashion Gives Back as our launch party and we did a show with local celebrity types. Everyone had a blast and we raised a bunch of money or the Capital City Aids Fund. Once people saw that model and the success we had there, everyone wanted to do it. I got a call 6 months later to do FNO at Pavilions. We sort of patented the concept here in town and have ran with it. We’re very proud of what we’ve accomplished there and love that the community comes together for these events.
What can we expect from this year’s event?
Awesome lineup of models, amazing food, drinks and great company. Sacramento is a fashion force to be reckoned with—no doubt.