Local entrepreneur and hair stylist Gretchen Blaylock started her business on Facebook but recently expanded to a storefront.
Her daughter recently turned 5 years old and started kindergarten, and Blaylock wanted to go back to work. And she wanted to expand beyond a salon. So she bought boutique items for wholesale prices and sold them via Facebook initially.
"It went over really, really well," she said. "It went over so well that it was time-consuming just packaging and shipping and doing invoices and all of that; it was almost overwhelming."
So she started looking for a storefront and finally found a place that felt right. Now, Labella Jewels Salon & Boutique is located at 8513 Hixson Pike.
The investment came from money she saved herself, and her family helped do work on the interior, such as building a separation between the salon and boutique. And Blaylock refurbished old furniture to create a cozy feeling, she said.
Now, she has five employees and is looking to hire another hair stylist.
The salon offers everything from cuts and colors to waxes. A shampoo and cut starts at $18, a color starts at $40, highlights start at $70, and an eyebrow wax is $10. Blaylock said appointments are needed, although she hopes to be able to take walk-ins when she hires another stylist.
"It has been going really good," she said. "I've gained a lot more new hair clients, which I wasn't really expecting."
Through the boutique Blaylock sells women's jewelry, dresses of varying lengths, leggings, scarves and boots. She also offers monogrammed items, such as shirts and hats.
"A lot of people that come in—they have seen a lot of the same items that I carry in online boutiques," she said. "I carry the exact same thing but for a cheaper price. You don't have to wait for shipping, and you don't have to pay a shipping fee."
Sign up for our email list to get your morning news delivered directly to your inbox. All we need is your email address.