Shelly Miller and Teighla Norris decided to pursue their dream of opening a hair salon when their dream location became available. 102 North Williamson is located right on Elon University’s campus and is currently on its way to becoming a boutique salon called 102 North. The building is currently being renovated, but they plan on opening in early April.
Miller and Norris emphasized that being on Elon’s campus was a large part of their inspiration. They believe the location has a target market.
“I love the idea of the rotating students and people coming in and out and the changing of clients, even over the four years that they’re here,” Miller said. They even waited for this specific location to become available before choosing to open their salon. “It’s a perfect clientele market right here.”
Miller and Norris have both worked at numerous salons in the past and specialize in color and stylized hair cuts. “We like natural lived-in color, really natural highlights,” Miller said. “We both really care a lot about the integrity of the hair and the health of the hair.” They also plan on using products that are healthy for hair and the environment.
To ensure a “boutique” feel, the salon will be kept at minimal capacity. Miller and Norris plan on creating an open space with a minimalist, modern aesthetic. “We want to create the highest quality that we can give on every service,” Miller said. “We both want to work in a very laid back environment and do what we love without the craziness of busy salons, which are great too.”
They both felt the renovation was necessary to open up the space and create the right environment for the new salon. The goal is that “every person has a feel of their space,” said Miller. “We pushed the walls back just to have a little privacy back here.”
Additionally, the pair plans on offering very specific services when they first open. They will not be offering men’s cuts. They will be sticking to their art that they have studied and enjoy most. “We finally found our true passion and kind of color,” Norris said. “[We’re] not working just to be working.”
Along with their passion, both have gained a lot of experience in their areas of expertise. “My mom was a hairstylist, so I grew up in a hair salon,” said Norris. The two also both attended school for hair and have over ten years in salon experience.
Opening a business is a brand new experience for Miller and Norris. They are both self-taught entrepreneurs, and they agreed that the best way to learn was through experience. “I don’t know how anybody would go straight to owning a salon or anything from school,” Miller said. “Being in a salon and seeing all the things for the behind the scenes on the business aspect, you understand it then.”
The two are looking forward to joining the downtown Elon community. Miller’s husband works at Elon, and both owners have lived in the area for a while. “We liked the idea in this little community because we both love it a lot,” Miller said.
Miller and Norris are mothers and met through their kids who attended school together. Both of them took time from their hair careers to be full-time moms. “I am just looking forward to getting back behind the chair,” Norris said. They both are looking forward to being “full-ish” time moms again.
Miller and Norris have Instagram pages showcasing their work as hairstylists. Because they have both worked in past salons, they are able to preview their work for new clients. 102 North will also be launching a website and social media pages in the coming weeks.