Sour Grapes and Saddle Sores
Hairstylists, a lay-off proof occupation June 4, 2009
In a conversation with Barber Rob Stachniak, who operates a barber shop in downtown Wyoming, it occurred to me that I might look into the whole matter of hair styling. The shop is called Robâ€™s Place. He began practice in Princeville in 2004. He graduated from Quad City barber and hair styling college. He and his shop are licensed by the State of Illinois. I asked the kind of questions we usually ask people who are in a profession. He told me, that he liked styling hair and found the relationship with his clients to be interesting. He said while he will never be rich, the work is profitable and enjoyable.
There are, to my knowledge, six beauticians and two barbers in the town of Wyoming. They all carry certificates of education. That seems to me to be lot of hair styling and as I continue you will learn that they are all busy. Appointments are the general order of the day however, there are exceptions..
Joyce Price, who operates the Blue Buff shop in Wyomingâ€™s south end told me a funny story about the term hair stylist. She said that the very early days, women were not allowed to cut hair, only a barber could cut hair. So the beautician always worked in conjunction with a male barber. One day, she was in a friendâ€™s shop who was trimming a client's hair. Joyce was surprised and said, you canâ€™t do that. The friend replied, I am not cutting hair, I am styling hair. It is all in a word!
Joyce opened her shop in her home January 1,1976. She graduated from a beauty college in East Peoria. It used to be that beauty shops were inspected on an annual basis; today continuing education is all that is required to renew licenses. She said that the reason she became a beautician was first, that she liked working with hair and second, she would be home with her children as they grew up. She said her clients have become her friends over the years.
Sally Pepper operates her beauty shop outside her home on East Williams Street, Wyoming. She employs two beauticians and a barber. Her first shop was opened in Chillicothe in 1970 and she moved Wyoming in 1989.
It amazed me that she was able to operate her shop and do such a great job as Wyoming's Mayor for eight years.
Coni Andersonâ€™s shop is Coniâ€™s Hair Care on West Grove St, in Wyoming. I asked her why she chose hair styling. She said, "Love to style hair. When I was in the sixth grade, I used to do hair for free because I loved it." That seems more like a calling than a profession. She said that she had busy times and quiet times but that the shop does well.
Coni has two degrees from the Beauty College in Rock Island, Il..one to style hair and the other to teach the art of styling. She taught in the college in 1972. She married Ron Anderson in 1974 and moved her shop to Wyoming.
Debbie Polk operates her shop in her home. She began styling hair for her friends in the 7th and 8th grades. She went to Barber School in Peoria in 1951 and worked for several other beauticians for some years. She opened her present shop in 1983, and named it Mane Street Design. Like all of the stylists in this Wyoming group, she likes to design hair styles, finds satisfaction in the finished product, and is happy working with her clients. She said that when she began she was styling up to eighteen persons a day, now she works three days a week. Both of her daughters like to style hair, Emily, who lives in Rockford, is the only one who is licensed.
Google tells us that hair stylists are the most lay-off proof of all professions. Some one always wants his or her hair styled. Obviously the need is here in Stark County. I chose not to check to see if there were other shops in the county, I assume there are. As friend Rob says, it is a hairy situation!
Hair Stylists are in their profession for two reasons for the satisfaction of helping peopleâ€™s hair look good and, to become friends with their clients. With the persons interviewed in this column it can be assured that hair stylists are good community folks who enjoy styling peopleâ€™s hair.
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