Our Story


OUR STORY

We all know that we’re best at what we’re most passionate about, but sometimes it takes a leap of faith to align our dreams with reality. Brothers Sean and Ian Kalember have long had an appreciation for fine style, passed down from their mother, who raised them with what they both describe as “an impeccable eye.” Ian says, “We’ve always had a passion for the finer things in life and fashion was naturally a part of that.”

Both longtime insurance industry professionals, one night at work, the brothers were brainstorming about what type of business they would love to start together and agreed on a men’s clothing store. Sean recalls, “It just seemed fun and inspiring. Really, it was about creating something that was uniquely and 100% accountably ours. No bosses, no rules. Just us and our ability to create, our eye, and our passion.”

Less than a week later, the serendipity was not lost on Ian when he was having lunch with an acquaintance and she mentioned wanting to sell her downtown Santa Rosa men’s clothing store. Though the business was doing well, her heart was more in the women’s clothing store she owned. Despite the long shot, Sean and Ian decided to go for it, and eight months later they opened KALIBER.

Sean explains, “KALIBER was a concept born from the idea of finding what was missing from our own lives. We were bored and in need of something fresh. We needed a creative outlet, a space to feed our energies, a project for fun. It so happens that by doing so, we filled a void in the market.”

In the short time that KALIBER has been in business, it’s been voted Best Men’s Clothing Store by The Bohemian and has made the Bay Area A List. However, Ian says, “Our biggest compliments come from referrals and direct customer compliments. We are pretty proud of our Yelp reviews.” Their long string of five-star reviews speaks volumes.

Sean adds, “The community has had an amazing response! We have a very strong customer base that is growing every day. We do no traditional advertising, so everything is word-of-mouth.” Six months after opening their doors, Sean resigned from his position of nine years to devote all of his time and energy to the shop.

What the Kalember brothers bring to the North Bay is not only a carefully curated lineup of specialty brands not available elsewhere in the county, but an ethos heavily rooted in service and integrity. Sean says, “It’s what sets us apart, and ultimately it’s just who we are. The personal aspect is what I love the most: our regulars become friends. They’re as much a part of this as we are. We have a good time here, so it’s important to us that everyone coming in has a good time, too.” He adds, “You’re not at the mall at a huge department store. You’re in my store. I personally picked out every single item, and I’m going to do my best to find you something perfect.”

The experience and response have been so overwhelmingly positive that Sean and Ian are considering the potential of opening a second shop in the future. For now, though, they stay focused on evolving and fine-tuning their D Street store and developing their online shop.

They took the leap and great things ensued. As Ian says, “It was the vessel that brought new challenges to us personally, which provided opportunities for growth in our relationship as brothers and as men. The critical lessons we’ve learned on this journey are worth so much more than the success of the store, but it sure feels good when something you created from the heart works.”

Written By: Goli Mohammadi