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Hair studio is a Blueprint for success

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Blueprint Hair Salon team: since opening in 2014, the studio has grown. Pictured are staff members, front row from left is Shapri Joell and Kristen Medeiros. Back row is Kerri Pennix, Meghan Desilva and studio owner Raquel Brown. Missing are Casey Daniels, Torri Franks and Tia Sampson (Photograph by Akil Simmons)

Raquel Brown took the leap of faith when she opened Blueprint Hair Studio in Hamilton four years ago.

At the time she was 26, and had been a hairstylist for eight years after completing her studies at Marca College in Toronto.

Mrs Brown worked at the Willow Stream Spa, at the Fairmont Southampton.

“ I have always loved hair” she said. I was working as a hair and nails technician at the Willow Stream Spa as I was really into working in high-end places and being around an environment where people love to pamper themselves.”

The mother of one said she did not have any intention of opening her own salon, but clients kept pushing her towards it.

“For many years clients have asked me to start my own business and at first I didn’t want to do it,” she said.

Although reluctant, in 2014 she opened Blueprint Hair Studio in the Pearman Building at 9 Par-la-Ville Road.

Being a young entrepreneur and a business owner, she realised she needed support and reached out to two business coaches. One was Jenny Smatt, who works at Ontru, a local company that provides coaching services to individuals and businesses; the other coach was overseas in Alberta, Canada.

“They help keep me on task,” said Mrs Brown. “Because being a business owner is completely different from just working for yourself. I needed a lot of guidance. I love criticism and people guiding me and telling me what to do to become a better version of myself.”

She said the biggest progression since opening the hair studio was the number of staff.

“I originally had one other person and myself, now its five of us.”

She mentioned that her employees have been supportive and stood by her and played a key role in the development of the salon.

“I want to give credit to my team; without them, I couldn’t be where I am now. Thank you for supporting me. As a young business owner they took the leap of faith with me an I’m grateful.”

Mrs Brown believes in investing in her staff to develop them and become better hairstylist s and people.

“I want to eventually have my staff take my clients, so I can manage the salon. I want my business to work for me, not me work for my business.”

Her family has played a major role in her success so far, and she admitted she could not do it without the help of her parents, Warren and Alryta Furbert.

“My parents helped me open the salon by financing it as I did not have the money. I am very grateful to them for this,” she said. She also thanked her husband, Thomas Brown, who assisted in building the salon.

“My husband is a carpenter and he has pretty much built my salon. This was great because I didn’t have to pay anyone to do it so I am very thankful for him.”

Blueprint has a range of services including, cutting, braiding, natural and relaxed hair, women and men’s hair services, colouring, extensions and more.

The salon is to offer a tip and sip event, where people can come and get tips and advice on how to care for their hair and learn how to maintain their “do” after leaving the salon. In addition, they will be showing guests how to do quick up do hairstyles.

For more information on the salon and details on the tip and sip event, visit http://www.bphairstudio.com/ or call 232.2583 or e-mail: bphairstudio.com.

Doing well: Raquel Brown, owner of Blueprint Hair Stdui, who took a leap of faith when she opened the business four years ago and has seen it grow with additional staff members added (Photograph by Akil Simmons)