Styling Midtown

October 9th, 2013


“So I was hired to style an open house at Midtown.” Don’t I sound all highfalutin? Like Rachel Zoe, celebrity stylist, listing off one of the five styling jobs she has booked for the afternoon, that is after approving her new shoe line and picking out millions of dollars worth of jewelry for “Annie” (that would be Hathaway). Then it’s home for some quality time with “Sky Sky” before spending two hours getting her make-up done so she and Rog can go to a store opening during which they will just “go in, say Hi and leave because I’m so exhausted. Seriously, I’m so tired it’s ba-nan-as.” Yeah right, that’s exactly my situation. I’m not one bit highfalutin, but that’s not the case at Midtown Hair Studio, the newest happening salon one town over from my little burg.

It’s owner Megan sent me a text one Saturday afternoon in July. Megan is a very good friend of my niece Morgan and after opening a new hair studio in her hometown decided it was time to hold an open house and asked if I could come up with some decor for the big day. “No problem.” I said, “When is it?” “Next Saturday, if you don’t have time I understand.” was the reply. Oh boy, a week to pull something together, that would mean I couldn’t schedule in my normal amount of procrastination. Since I’m not one to turn down a job I told her I’d get to work.

computer screen

First up I designed some picks for her to use with the finger foods she would be serving. Megan sent me her business logo which I made into a pick design and then I came across the coolest little ’60’s era caricature that just looked like it belonged in a hair salon. Plus she reminded me of Megan so I put her on a pick as well.

Paper punch

Because I was short on time I had to use what I had on hand. I rounded up all of my “candy (I guess the fancy word is Apothecary) jars” and modified the label I had made a few months earlier for Mikaelyn’s graduation. Having learned a lesson from my Prom centerpieces, this time I hot glued the labels and ribbon to the jars. I did this with the hope of being able to eventually peel everything off my jars and no one being any the wiser. The plan was I would fill the jars with whatever fun hair supplies Megan had on hand.

Candy Jars

Next up were the chalkboards, because apparently I can’t decorate without chalkboards anymore. I already had one funky frame that I had painted orange months earlier. Orange was, from what I could deduce after pumping my niece Marli (who had already had her hair done at Midtown) for information, an accent color in Megan’s studio. This also finally helped me decide what color to paint my “Jack and Chrissy” frame.


My “Jack and Chrissy” frame had been discovered by one of my Design Assistants (my mom) while working a shift at a nearby thrift shop. It was a plastic, fake bamboo framed mirror that would have looked right at home hanging in Jack and Chrissy’s (and Janet, I know, I know, everybody always forgets about Janet) apartment. Mom snagged it for $5 and it had been sitting in my garage ever since waiting for a coat of paint. Once it was painted it was off to my other Design Assistant’s wood shop where it would be fitted for a chalkboard insert.

“Jack and Chrissy” got my best chalk reproduction of Megan’s business logo and the other frame, which I also had a chalkboard insert made for, got my standard chalk “Welcome”.

welcome sign

Oh, I almost forgot about the twigs. How could I forget about the twigs. The twigs were taken from the big bunch of curly willow branches that had been living in my garage for over a year, compliments of my friend JoAnn. I planned to paint two bunches orange and then put them in the glass vases we used at my niece Morgan’s wedding (please take note of all of my “re-using and recycling” thank you very much). Painting twigs doesn’t sound like a big deal, but let me tell you it is. Especially when you don’t start painting until 10 p.m. and are forced to do it in your garage so that you can actually see what you’re painting. I of course chose spray paint as my medium, which meant more dead brain cells and a really sore trigger finger since it took forever to cover every bit of those branches. Spray paint also meant that when I picked the glass vase, which I had been using to determine how many twigs I would need, off of my garage floor it left behind a nice white circle. This made me stop, and look around only to notice every surface in my garage was covered with orange spray paint. And it looked even worse the next morning, luckily since it was overspray, most of it came off with some scrubbing.

Finally the day dawned and I carefully packed up all of my glassware in my trusty laundry basket (classy right?) and picked up my sister Kelli, who I roped into helping, and hit the road. When we got there I got my first look at Megan’s studio and it was every bit as nice as a hair salon in Midtown N.Y.C.


My favorite things, besides the brick wall, were the shampoo stations… totally cool, and orange.

salon wash stations

And then there was this awesome chandelier…


and the chalkboard that my niece Marli had “done her thing on” just a few days earlier…

Martha's chalkboard

I got to setting up and Megan found me some funky hair rollers to fill the candy jars…

jar of rollers 2

and I propped “Jack and Chrissy” up on one of the wood crates I grabbed from my house on the way out the door.

jar of rollers

And then, my very favorite thing. I made a bigger version of the cute ’60’s girl and popped her into a plastic frame I bought from a sweet little old lady at her garage sale for 50 cents. Of course I had painted the frame orange while inside my orange garage. I put her under some glass in the center of it all.

under glass dome

And finally, the finished product, before all the food was added.

table set up

All done in a week’s time, pretty impressed if I do say so myself (said the professional procrastinator).

3 Responses to “Styling Midtown”

  1. Rebekah Says:

    Looks great–as usual–Kerri! Love your writing style; makes me laugh (in a good way). And who hasn’t spray painted in their garage after midnight only to discover everything covered in that lovely “dust”?! 🙂 Okay…maybe it’s just us creatives.

  2. kris newman Says:

    This is so cute! i love the little mod girl! and i love Marli’s chalkboard – she got the chalk jean. Wish i had it 🙁

  3. Kerri Says:

    Thanks for the kind words. Glad to hear I’m not the only one with a “colorful” garage!

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