Interview With Katie Hintz-Zambrano of Refinery29 SF
A Q&A With Refinery29 San Francisco's Katie Hintz-Zambrano
With editor Katie Hintz-Zambrano at the helm, online style hub Refinery29 has just branched into the local San Francisco market, bringing us all the SF fashion news that's fit to print. I was eager to chat with Hintz-Zambrano, a recent transplant from the Big Apple, and hear her thoughts about shopping and style in the City by the Bay, and she gladly obliged. From hill-friendly heels to windy-city beauty secrets, check out our convo below!
PopSugar SF: What are your favorite shopping haunts in San Francisco?
Katie Hintz-Zambrano: There are so many great shops in the city, but I would say I especially love BellJar and Gravel & Gold in the Mission, Reliquary in Hayes Valley, and places where I can sift through a bunch of merchandise to find surprises and bargains, such as Crossroads (the Castro location!) and Cris consignment in Russian Hill.
PS: How about your favorites for aspirational window shopping?
PS: You recently wrote a great post about hill-friendly heels for SF. What's one shoe you can't live without in the City by the Bay?
KHZ: Honestly, Jack Purcell sneakers! But when I'm in a fancier ensemble, I have a great pair of black canvas lace-up peep-toe heels that I got for something like $20 at Crossroads that are surprisingly comfortable and somewhat slope friendly.
This year, however, I really want to invest in a pair of heels or boots by local designer Martha Davis. She was an industrial designer before she was a shoe designer, so form always meets function in her designs, which I find really important.
PS: What trends are you seeing for Spring in San Francisco?
KHZ: Because it's always a bit breezy, I can see the midi- and maxiskirt trend really taking hold here. I like that the silhouette has a sort of hippie, throw-back vibe, which is very authentic to San Francisco, but paired with a really nice thick cardigan or cool jacket, it also looks very modern. For guys, I think it continues to be nice, fitted dark denim or rolled-up trousers paired with collared shirts, and shoes sans socks. It's kind of a J.Crew catalog look, but I actually consider that a good thing!
PS: When you need a break, where do you love to primp and relax?
KHZ: I live in Noe Valley and there are so many great (and super cheap!) nail salons. So I'll often hit one of those for a little nail work. I also really like the Benefit Brow Bar in the Marina. And otherwise, to relax I love to take a run around the Panhandle. After thinking about this question, I realize I definitely need to pamper myself more! Ha.
PS: You recently relocated here from New York. What differences have you seen between New York and SF styles?
KHZ: Because the majority of the US fashion industry — including fashion media, designers, PR agencies, etc. — is all centered in New York, there are people with amazing style just wandering around all the time. Whereas here, the people that are really into fashion are few and far between, so I have to say it's a lot more refreshing to meet someone in San Francisco who has great style, because it's not a given like it is in New York. And overall San Francisco is just so much more casual. You'll go into a nice restaurant here and no one is especially dressed up. While I think it's definitely important to make a little bit of an effort, I also like that no one looks uncomfortable here. There's a real authenticity that translates to how people dress.
PS: San Francisco, as you may have noticed, can be a windy, foggy city. Any beauty secrets to share for handling the breeze and mist?
KHZ: The biggest one is probably just carrying a hand mirror and your lipgloss or lipstick in your bag and applying it when you get to wherever you're going. If you do it beforehand, there's a big chance your hair is just going to whip around and get stuck in it.
PS: What upcoming San Francisco event, happening, or launch are you most excited about?
KHZ: I am really excited about some of the collaborative retail projects set to open, including MAC Modern Appealing Clothing's new space in Dogpatch, which is a collaboration with Piccino restaurant and some other businesses. The Valencia strip in the Mission is also absolutely blowing up at the moment and Revolver, Mollusk Surf Shop, Rosenthal Gallery, and (perhaps) Prairie Collective are working on a very cool project around Valencia and 15th Street. I'm also excited to see what Shotwell does in its new Mission space. Overall, it's a very, very exciting time to be writing about and living in San Francisco!