A third location of On The Fringe Hair Design hits downtown Vancouver
After successfully opening and operating two salon locations over the past 11 years-one at the University of Victoria, followed by another at the University of BC-salon owner and Joico international artistic team member Shannon Simmonds decided it was time to venture off campus. Envisioning a more grown-up version of her two youth-driven salons, Simmonds set her sights on Vancouver’s Main Street, a prime location in the city’s downtown.
“I wanted the salon off campus to be a bit more upscale but have the same friendly, positive environment as the other two locations.” Ensuring a welcoming environment thus became a key focus for Simmonds, who set up the rectangular 2,000 sq. ft. space to put the focus back on the client.
The salon’s spacious waiting room is a prime example of this design strategy. Not only is it ample and comfortable, but also strategically situated out of view of the cutting stations. This way, if a stylist is running behind, he or she is not distracted or pressured by the presence of a waiting client. The stylist stays in the moment, focused on the client sitting at his or her chair.
Inspired by a stylist station she saw at Joico’s Artistic Institute in Amsterdam, Simmonds also personally designed 7 ft. mirrors for each cutting station. “The large mirrors not only create a long and lean space, they also allow the client to become the main focal point,” she explains. The salon’s track lighting and large windows add to this effect, working together to cast a flattering light on the individual sitting at each chair.
Next, Simmonds chose a simple colour palette-mostly white décor paired with subtle, fresh pops of green throughout-for the industrial-style space. “To create a balance in the salon, I wanted to combine industrial with organic and hard with soft,” she explains.
The salon was also designed with professional education in mind. As a Joico concept salon, Simmonds’s latest location also features a 400 sq. ft. education centre where Joico classes are held. Simmonds also uses the multifunctional room as a workshop to experiment on mannequin heads and a place to set up photo shoots. “Education has always been very important to me. It’s one of the only ways you can get further ahead in this industry,” she says.
Preferring to hire stylists right out of school, she wants this third location to be the first step in the training process. From there, as stylists become more advanced, they will be able to circulate from one location to another-what Simmonds calls a “stylist exchange.”
Name: On The Fringe Hair Design
Info: 4166 Main Street, Vancouver, BC; 604.569.0856;
Owner: Shannon Simmonds
Opened: July 22, 2009
Breakdown: 2000 sq. ft., six staff members and growing, eight cutting stations, four backwash sinks, one colour bar, office and education room.
Retail: Joico, Fixmen and Evolve
Management Software: Insight Salon and Spa Software
Hours of operation: Tues. and Wed.: 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.; Thurs. and Fri. 10 a.m. to 8 p.m.; Sat. 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.; Sun. 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.
By Melissa Brazier
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