Shop Talk: Emily Holt's Hero Shop In The Tenderloin Is Oh So Chic

Photographs sourced from Hero Shop

Photographs sourced from Hero Shop

Former Vogue Editor, Emily Holt Brings Heroic Style to SF. And we. Are. In. Awe.

Nestled in the imminent neighborhood of the Tenderloin, you’ll find a hidden gem that exhibits a universal sanctuary of prominent style and eclectic curiosities. As local shops are becoming [even more] ubiquitous throughout the neighborhoods of San Francisco, there’s one that puts the city en vogue. Its name is Hero Shop, a fun and true concept store that brings the beauty of heroism to life. Bay area native and former Vogue Editor, Emily Holt is the founder and mastermind behind the fashion-forward and altruistic boutique.

True to its name, the one-stop-Hero-Shop features coveted products sourced from an array ofhigh-fashion labels and local brands. Its admirable curation of ready-to-wear fashion, one-of-a-kind jewelry, and tech gadgets has something for both the misses and misters in your life. “Everyone can participate, from the fashion conscious to the fashion curious”  the business entrepreneur expressed in her Indiegogo campaign, raising almost $46,000 for her quaint and cool shop. The boutique is home to designers like Creatures of the Wind, Stevie Howell, Trademark and local herbal maker / Ayurvedic aromatherapy practitioner Dawn De La Fuente of s/he.

Aside from its highly notable labels, Emily hopes to establish a community of distinct style, art, and philanthropy that will enrich the up-and-coming neighborhood of the Tenderloin. In efforts to foster and boast the integrity of the TL, Hero Shop joined forces with local organizations and non-profits that provide support to local families, under-privileged students, and persons in need. Programs like 826 Valencia and Raphael House are just a couple of the heroic organizations that are making progressive change to the Cinderella annex of the city.

There’s no denying that the neighborhood is in great need. Hero Shop aims to share our success and our energy with our neighbors who are doing important work.
— Emily Holt

In addition to its camaraderie with neighboring local powerhouses, Hero Shop is steps, if not Minutes away from local galleries like Book & Job, Instragram hot spot Mr.Holmes Bakery and the hustle and bustle of Union Square. It’s location tag is in the midst of adjacent districts to the Fillmore, Japantown, and iconic Nob Hill, making for an epic #SundayFunday filled with à la mode fashion, irreverent eats, and top charting views. And that my friends, is what [we] San Franciscans live for.

But before Hero Shop marked its spot on the 7x7 grid, the Los Gatos native was living in the Big Apple where she established herself as a reputable editor.  A true Californian indeed, Emily was a predominate contributor in the fashion industry working for renowned publications at W, Women’s Wear Daily (WWD), and Vogue. Her dream job as an editor came to an end when she realized she was ready and inspired to transform the fashion scene in San Francisco. “Everyone warned me that San Francisco has no style. As a hometown girl, I defended the city and refused to believe it. The difference is that they save labels for special occasions. In New York, I’ve worn Marni to pick up almond milk at Trader Joes.“

A hero in our eyes, Emily Holt is the real deal when it comes to chasing dreams and making things happen. And our 14 Question with the Superhero herself proves exactly that. Read on friends, and cheers to Hero Shop’s first anniversary in the Golden City (make sure to stop by and say hi)!

14 Questions with Emily Holt

BC: What was your motivation behind Hero Shop?

EH: I wanted to open a fun, friendly store that celebrates true fashion and community.

BC: Did you have any setbacks or fearful intuitions about opening a brick-and mortar shop, especially in the Tenderloin?  If so, how did you overcome those fears?

EH: I always knew it was risky to open brick-and-mortar in this climate and choose to do it off-the-beaten-path. But I felt SF needed something different, something slightly unexpected. Also, I’m really stubborn and so once I decided I was going to do it, nothing was going to stop me. 

BC: Do you have a creative process when it comes to curating the products you carry?

EH: There has to be a personal connection—whether I know and like the designer or love to wear the brand or just get a kick out of a certain item.

BC: What was the last gift you gave someone?

EH: Denim placemats by SF-based label UBi-IND and a brass Jonathan Adler serving set for my friends’ wedding.

BC: In one to two words, how would you describe your style?

EH: Love a turtleneck

BC: NY pizza or the Mission burrito?

EH: Mission burrito (BC: that’s what we thought.)

BC: Who is your favorite super hero?

EH: Linda Carter as Wonder Woman

BC: Favorite designer?

EH: Too many to name

BC: Favorite San Francisco brunch spot?

EH:  I don’t have the patience for brunch. Too much waiting.

BC: What is one piece of advice you would give to an aspiring business entrepreneur?

EH: Know enough about what you’re doing so that you’re educated but not so much that you’re discouraged.

BC: What was your childhood dream?

EH: To be a backup dancer for Janet Jackson

BC: What do you miss most about being at Vogue?

EH: My friends

BC: Central park or Golden Gate Park?

EH: Golden Gate Park

BC: If you had the opportunity to live another life, who would you aspire to be?

EH: Malia or Sasha Obama—can you imagine being raised by Michelle and Barack?


// 982 Post St, Tenderloin, heroshopsf.com