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Style Council 2014: Pramana Collective's Brandee Barker

Photography by Cooper Carras; Hair: Fiona Terranova for diPietro Todd salon; Makeup: Josephine Wissenberg for Aubri Balk, inc

Lauded by the New York Times for buying Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg his “first” suit, former Facebook head of public relations Brandee Barker has since moved on to helm the communications consulting company, The Pramana Collective (whose name includes the Sanskrit word for knowledge). In her role, the 43-year-old is advising the likes of Dropbox, Airbnb, and Pinterest on such factors as product launches and digital strategies. With her stylish blend of what she calls “LA roots and SF sophistication,” Barker’s standard work attire of J Brand jeans and Alexander McQueen tops is on par with the everyday fashion of such powerful female tech execs as Sheryl Sandberg (whose book, Lean In, Barker helped launch in 2013). Though the Menlo Park resident says she’s lucky if she knows what she’ll be working on next week (we suspect that her claim is designed to deflect attention away from her top-secret projects), it’s safe to say that she’ll be charting a start-up’s meteoric rise. “The tech industry may be packed with smarts,” she says, “but business savvy and style are in shorter supply.” 

Mandatory bijou

Sarah Chloe necklace engraved with Logan, my son’s name

Obsessive behavior

I have an unhealthy designer handbag fixation, and I have an equally unhealthy trucker hat fetish—these two obsessions often don’t work together.

Brand loyalty

All Apple, all the time

Favorite restaurant

I’m sure it would be The French Laundry—if I could ever get in.

Home goods

I just covered [the walls of] my son’s room with a mod Rex Ray for Flavor Paper design called “Padauk.”

Beauty staples

Laura Mercier tinted moisturizer, Trish McEvoy high volume mascara, and Tom Ford ultra shine lip gloss in tawny pink.

Words to live by

Don’t do anything half-assed.

Favorite classic SF experience?

The annual street fairs and riding the cable car anywhere. I mean, what other city can you take a cable car to work or to see the sites?

Favorite SF street to stroll and why?

A looooonnng stroll starting at Pine and Fillmore, up over the hill to Union, and then over towards Polk.

Favorite public artwork in the Bay Area?

The Bay Lights by Leo Villareal

Go-to spot in the Bay Area for a culture fix?

The Exploratorium - I have a curious four-year-old son so everything is an amazing discovery.

Day-off itinerary:

  • Early, leisurely no-traffic drive up from Menlo Park to the city

  • Stop for a Mint Mojito coffee at Philz on Van Ness

  • A brisk walk along Crissy Field and park car for the day, Uber takes over as city transportation

  • Head over to Wash Park to meet friends for brunch at Park Tavern (must-have avocado toast)

  • Hope for a spotting of the Parrots of Telegraph Hill while sitting outside

  • 1:05 p.m. Giants game at AT&T park (snack on garlic fries & Anchor Steam Liberty Ale)

  • Late afternoon stroll down Hayes, stopping at few boutiques for a little home & fashion shopping

  • Quick stop at The Blues Jean Bar on Union for a jeans fix on route to dinner in the Marina

  • Dinner at Pabu (any sashimi and Miso Black Cod) OR the The Ramen Bar (Shrimp and Crab Dumpling Ramen) - any restaurant from Michael Mina is an SF treasure!

  • Night cap with owner & friends at Reed & Greenough

  • Pick up car at Crissy Field and head home to the burbs

One word to describe the Bay Area:

Majestic

If you could bring one Bay Area eat to a deserted island to subsist on for the rest of your days, what would it be?

Brussel sprout chips from Park Tavern

 This article was published in 7x7's September 2014 issue. Click here to subscribe.