Sara Jade Hair & Beauty

In the first of a two part Featured Design, this month I interviewed Sara Jade of Sara Jade Hair & Beauty.  Sara relocated her salon earlier this year and the interior design is impressive.  Here’s what Sara had to say;


Did you have a clear vision for the interior design of your salon?

Interior Desinger Melbourne
Sara Jade in her salon

Sara Jade has been in hairdressing for 19 years therefore her vision for the interior design of her salon and for the feeling she wanted to evoke for her clients was very clear.  Sara wanted a Modern French interior design, and she spent 12 months researching this style by reading various books to help refine what she wanted. Ultimately this vision became Sara’s dream.

In terms of the vision for her clients, this was very clear too, Sara wanted to create a space that emulated a bedroom dressing table, with large mirrors, draws and comfortable seating.  She wanted to create a balance of professional salon and a welcoming, homely feeling not easily apparent in other salons.  Aware that her client’s are busy women dealing with the daily hustle and bustle of life, Sara wanted her salon to be ‘time out’ where her clients could look and feel great.

Following a serious health scare Sara decided to take the plunge, having already outgrown her previous salon and with new insight into the fragility of life, she decided to drive forward to realise her dream and took the first practical step by visiting her bank manager.  Sara’s vision has been executed to perfection and her pride is obvious as she says ‘wow, what a journey but look what I’ve created, it was worth it’.

Did you instruct an interior designer or do it yourself? 

Sara instructed professionals to create the blue prints to ensure the building had appropriate plumbing and lighting to be a functional salon as well as meeting all the necessary building regulations but the actual styling was her own creation.

How long did it take from concept to completion?

The journey started in August 2012 when Sara made the ultimate decision to move into bigger premises. It took three months to draw up the plans in late 2013 and actual work started early December with Sara being able to open for business in early January 2014.  There are still a few bits and pieces that need doing such as wiring and changing the basins but overall the bulk of the work is complete.

Is there some part of the interior design that happened by accident?

Sara is having a custom made table for the ‘colour zone’, a unique concept to Sara Jade’s salon, this is a zone where women can sit and work on their lap top or tablet while their colour is developing away from the cutting chair/mirror where women usually wait.  Currently, the table and chairs for this zone are Sara’s own outdoor setting but due to the colours they work in the overall interior design scheme and have been an ideal interim measure until the custom made table is delivered.

 From your experience in other hair dressing salons what was a ‘must have’ for your salon?

The day before I interviewed Sara I actually went into to the salon to have my own hair cut by Lisa (who did a fabulous job) and what was obvious to me was the great functionality of the space and no wonder as Sara’s ‘must haves’ were power points on either side of the mirror, drawers for client’s bags, moveable foot stools, and clear zones for cutting, washing, beauty and so on.

Was the black and white colour palette your idea?

The colour scheme was chosen by Sara as she wanted something different from her previous salon that was mainly brown with an old romantic French feel. Sara wanted a fresher look for her new salon and black, white, silver/grey are her favourite colours. Sara was particularly proud of the tiles she chose for their colour, texture and functionality.

What are the defining characteristics of your salon that are similar to your own individual characteristics?

Sara was quite clear and confident in her response; bold, simple, glamorous and stylish.

 What are the underlying business values/ethos that are represented in the interior design?

Service and quality. Sara said she wanted her clients to feel like they’ve stepped into a glamorous dressing room where they would ‘feel fantastic’.  Function and good flow between the different zones was also critical and the salon is aesthically beautiful and as well as a beautiful space to work in.

Since opening are there any functional problems or any changes you want to make?

The cutting stations were opposite each other which meant employees were constantly in each other’s way, so a change had to be made and we re-positioned the cutting stations to be diagonal to each other which has made a huge difference to how employees work and move around the salon.

 Where there any problems that could have been avoided if you had instructed an interior designer?

Yes and no, some building challenges could have been avoided if an interior designer was involved who was better able to communicate with trades people but only Sara could have realised the styling vision for her salon.

 What kind of feedback have you been getting from clients?

Simply both old and new clients just love it and are constantly telling Sara how fresh and warm the space feels.

Anything else you love about the space or would like to say about your salon?

Sara says ‘I love the salon, my space is fresh’ with a balance of professional salon with a welcoming, homely feel.