I love a good find, and for those Fall evenings quickly approaching, my new go-to accessory is a Carolyn Rowan cashmere shawl. Carolyn has been in the fashion industry forever, and started her own brand of beautiful accessories that complete every outfit. She takes pride in the craftsmanship, as each piece is handmade locally, and unique. Whether it be special jeweled buttons, fur trim or fringe, these shawls, wraps, and scarfs are made to last and be worn time and time again, a true staple in your wardrobe. Carolyn is all about quality, and her product is reflective of that. Whether you have a special occasion and need to warm up your look effortlessly, or simply want to be classic, cozy and chic in your jeans, Carolyn’s newest collection is the perfect finishing touch!
How many years have you been in business in NYC?
The concept began in 2014. Between sourcing, creating beading and canvases to actual production, it took a full year to get up and running. We officially launched in 2015.
How did you get your start and what was your initial inspiration?
I have always worked in fashion. The inspiration was to create unique pieces - not mass produced - that felt like jewelry. As a consultant to Judith Leiber, working in accessories taught me about craftsmanship and proprietary design.
What do you feel differentiates you from others in your field?
Since we have so many handmade, hand-sewn designs, we celebrate being a niche brand. So much is disposable even in the luxury sector, so we appreciate being a cool, small brand made to last.
What do you feel gives you longevity in this big city with so many options?
Our longevity is in the hopes of always coming up with that piece you reach for that makes you feel special and finishes your outfit.
How do you positively impact your clientele?
We want everyone to feel special when they step out the door, wearing the accessory that completes their look and makes them feel confident.
What is your favorite part of your job?
My favorite party of the job is connecting with customers. I love when we make a personal appearance, and someone says it’s their favorite accessory.
What is your favorite secret NYC spot?
My favorite spot is Via Quadronno. My most creative hours are early in the day, and starting with an iced macchiato is a sure-fire start to a great day.
How do you benefit mamas?
We are the last thing you put on, so what better way to benefit moms than to have that perfect layer or accessory? You can literally be in jeans and a T-shirt but throw on a great cashmere scarf or wrap or shawl.
What is the most memorable feedback a client has given you?
We had one customer tell us that if her house was on fire, she would grab the photos and her mink cape.
Pay it forward and name your top colleagues in the same field or related field.
I love Jeffry Levinson’s clutches. He also celebrates a small but luxury brand that elevates any outfit. I admire anyone trying to grow a small business as it’s so challenging and you have to love what you do because it’s easier to quit. I also love Bandier because she too had a vision and inspire women to feel good about themselves.
What is the best advice anyone's ever given you? Or what is your "mantra" / words to live by?
Just do it. (Nike)
As moms, the day can escape us, what is your best time-saving trick?
The best time-saving trick is to make your list of the 10 things you have to get done, and hope to get half done. The day always takes dips and turns - it’s hard to plan and cross everything off your list. It’s all about priorities and expectations.